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Topics - John P

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Trip reports / First canoe trip of the year!
« on: April 15, 2021, 02:24:00 AM »

Boat trips are not as easy these days, because the canoes are out in the country and I'm here in suburbia. But last Saturday was warm, and I had to go out to where the boats are, so a voyage became a possibility. I took the boat out to a place called Hubbard Pond, in southern New Hampshire, which I've posted about here before. It's actually rather difficult to get a picture during a nude canoe trip, as I can't get the camera far enough away in the boat, and it's quite a production to set the camera up in a tree and then hop in the boat and do some amusing antics while the camera clicks away.  So the only picture I have of myself is actually taken on land, and you'll have to take my word for it that the picture showing Mt Monadnock over the bow of the boat was actually made while I was naked!

The water was still pretty cold. I didn't have the fortitude to make myself swim.

Brian Johnson made this himself on old-fashioned movie film, but perhaps it was done in the post-film era using antiquated equipment. Anyway, he's a hiking and paddling naturist. Although he's British, he's hiked the Pacific Crest Trail 3 times, and wrote a guide book about it.

Trip reports / An early beach trip
« on: March 31, 2021, 04:50:17 AM »
This beach north of Boston is a fine place to enjoy a walk if there's a warm day in late winter or autumn. You can't go in summer, because it's part of a wildlife refuge, and they close the beach for seabird nesting. There are no staff patrolling or observing, so if you're willing to walk farther than most people go, you have a good chance of being able to get your clothes off!


You approach the beach over the dunes, via a boardwalk.

You might get the whole place to yourself, except for a guy taking pictures.

I was the only person there without shoes! Maybe everyone else thought their toes would become too numb to step.

I ended up very pleased with myself. (Pictures taken with the camera strapped to a piece of driftwood which I shoved into the sand.)

But you don’t have to walk. You could just sit.

Yes, I did spend some of the time in freedom and comfort! I stayed dressed that way walking back, until I started seeing clothed people near the boardwalk.

Free Range Naturism / Naked on the lava fields
« on: March 26, 2021, 05:07:46 AM »
Stripping off a few layers when things heat up can often be the most natural thing in the world.

Few of us, however, would attempt it in front of a crowd of hundreds while stood in front of a volcano spewing lava.

Trip reports / First picture of the year!
« on: March 17, 2021, 06:41:17 PM »
Call me feeble, but I haven't done anything nude outdoors this year. Then last Thursday was one of those late winter days when it was suddenly but briefly warm, so I felt the need to get out and feel the air. I should have made it a beach day, but instead I went to an area of woods and trails owned by a conservation organization and had a nice walk in the woods. There were too many people around for any sustained nudity, but I managed to get a picture, and although there wasn't snow everywhere, I wanted to show that we still have some. Yes, it's a little cool if it gets in your Tevas!
(Note: Imgur seems to be requiring viewers to claim to be 18 to see nudity. I'm trying another service.)

There are actually three pictures. The first one is for Facebook where textile friends will see it:

Then there's the one for Facebook naturist groups where you still get into trouble for nudity:

Then there's the one with life the way it should be:

Free Range Naturism / Solstice hike in Vermont this June
« on: March 11, 2021, 04:05:00 AM »
This year the solstice hike has the prospect of meeting friends who've traveled from far away, so I'm starting a thread well ahead of time. Perhaps as things become more clear, people will want to post here to coordinate plans.

There was a hike in 2020, but it wasn't very well recorded. Here's a report on the 2019 event, for the benefit of anyone who isn't familiar with what it's like:

It's not yet clear when the 2021 hike will take place. You can't just say, "Summer solstice is on June 21", because it doesn't necessarily happen on that date. In fact this year the North Pole makes its closest approach to the sun on June 20 at about 11:30pm in the eastern time zone (Monday, June 21, 2021 at 03:32 UTC) so June 20 may be the date for the hike. As the date gets closer, we'll see what the consensus is for which day we actually walk.

Free Range Naturism / Small naturist ramblers
« on: January 07, 2021, 06:43:10 PM »

Free Range Naturism / Poor choice of how to be a free range naturist
« on: January 06, 2021, 07:59:17 PM »

JBG, does that Secret Naturist's Handbook of yours explain how to deal with large hungry reptiles?

Naturism & Art / Really spectacular picture!
« on: December 06, 2020, 05:07:27 PM »
I won't copy it here because it's not public domain, but this is where you can see it, as of this moment:

They say the location is Smalls Falls in Lisbon, Maine.

Someone on another forum posted this video from German TV, about a new official clothing-optional hiking trail there. It's worth a look even if you don't speak German, just to see how they've hidden all the usual objectionable body parts without being too obvious with the censorship! But I thought it was a good thing that they've got this official trail.

So I sent the link to my friend Rainer (pronounced Rye-ner) whom I met on the Naked European Walking Tour, and who then joined two other friends and me in New Zealand last year, and he's also one of the organizers of the Natury website in Germany. I asked if he knew about this trail, and he responded quickly but with a very negative view. He has an outlook like the body freedom activists Vincent Bethell and Steve Gough in Britain, saying that anything official is going to be a "tolerated ghetto" designed to keep naturists in confinement! Whereas my friends here would be ready to accept any such concession gratefully. I wonder what people here would think. Here's Rainer's message:

Dear John,
I've heard of that, I don't like it at all, and I've never been there, I will definitely not go to that place under any circumstances, and I'm not a friend of "official naked hiking trails", because that can / could / might bring some limited-thinking, unsane in mind people to the idea:

"Oh, there are some official nude hiking trails: That means, that elsewhere nude hiking is not allowed!"

That is -- due to my opinion, a very bad idea -- because some people with such an unsane mindset try to ringfence naturists:
Therefore, there is an article on the natury website as a counterstatement:

Herzliche Grüße | With best wishes,

Trip reports / A few short trips
« on: October 09, 2020, 04:33:42 AM »
I've been accumulating photos from several activities over the last few weeks, where there aren't enough from any one trip to make up a decent sized report for this site. I'm combining them together in a single page, so the continuity is a little confusing. The first one was "The world's shortest canoe camping trip" where I paddled my camping gear a hundred yards across an inlet which I could have walked around. But the point of hauling the boat in (a lot more than 100 yards!) was to do some cruising around the lake, a former reservoir, no longer used for water supply. I did some minor exploring using the lake as a base. This was done with my solo boat, as opposed to the bigger boat that I use for shared trips.

If you want to see what happened to the old Strathmore mill, it was like this:

Then a couple of pictures for a challenge on a Facebook group, "Naturism on stairs". After thinking I had nothing to contribute, I found an old stairway in an outdoor location which I walked to after visiting the celebrated Walden Pond.

Next some canoeing with my dear wife, who tolerates my naturist antics without usually joining in. But this time we did do some skinny-dippin'! No, no illustrations available.

Then a couple of swims in a pond close to home in the Boston suburbs. I'm experimenting on myself to see how late in the year I can (a) enjoy swimming and (b) force myself to swim even when I no longer enjoy it. So far (a) still applies.

And last, a couple of pictures from a hike I did in central Massachusetts, looking north to Mt Watatic and the hills in southern New Hampshire. I have a new gadget to clamp my phone onto a mini-tripod which I can strap into a tree, so a new toy to play with!

Arrived at the lake, hoping to see a nice sunset, but the forest fires in the west made the sky hazy.

I was also hoping for a clear night with a sky full of stars, but that didn’t happen either.

I did cruise around the lake, once in daylight and twice at night.

Next day, a naturist friend came in to visit, and we had a swim. After that, I went out to visit the ruins of the Strathmore Paper mill in the town of Russell.

After sitting abandoned for 20 years, the mill finally burned down earlier this year.

My camp site on the shore of the lake.

View from my tent.

Sitting by the camp fire, sipping a “Country driver”, my own invention combining the concepts of Country Time + screwdrivers.

Next morning, ready to depart with the boat loaded.

Two pictures taken in the distinguished town of Concord MA, where the “Shot heard round the world” was fired.

I did these for the Canadian Naturists group on Facebook, which is why they’re censored.

Another trip, and this was an attempt at using a canoe paddle as a selfie stick—fail!

Naturism is re-creating Eden, only this time we can eat all the apples we want.

My wife took this picture while standing on the shore. She says she can’t turn around to take pictures while sitting in the boat.

The next few pictures are from a location near home called Wright’s Pond, which has walking trails and a public beach.

Here’s the public beach, which is officially closed for the season but still getting a few visitors as the leaves change color.

Water temperaure is down to the low 60s, but on a reasonably warm day, it’s still possible to enjoy swimming.

I’ve discovered that there’s access to the shore at a certain point which isn’t visible from many other places!

Finally a couple of pictures from a place called Mt Hunger, on the Midstate Trail in central Massachusetts.


Free Range Naturism / The Naked Rancher
« on: September 10, 2020, 05:28:18 AM »
A different kind of "Free range" here!

This is in Montana, but being reported from England. The Metro is pretty scurrilous--should we believe it?

Trip reports / Camping and paddling western Massachusetts
« on: August 28, 2020, 08:46:14 PM »
Here's a report on a trip I did earlier this week with my wife. Kathy had hip replacement surgery back in June, and she's currently trying to raise her level of physical activity, so this represented some "firsts" for her. First canoe trip, first camping trip, first swim! And happily, all these experiences went well.

We started out in a location east of the Connecticut River, in the town of Holland. The plan was to go down the Quinebaug River a couple of miles to Brimfield Lake, then turn around and come back, but the water level was so low and the river was so choked with weeds that we decided not to try it, and we just paddled around Holland Pond instead. It wasn't very exciting, and I didn't take any pictures. Plus there were enough people around that clothing seemed necessary the whole time.

Then we moved on to camp beside the Westfield River in a location I've visited occasionally over the years. I found the spot in 1973 when I had my first job, in Connecticut. When a weekend came, I promised myself that I would drive north and find a place to camp, and go skinny-dipping! My exploring instinct was pretty good, because I found this spot and got both in one place. It's not totally unknown, and people do go there to camp and swim, but as unofficial campsites go, it seems to get a low level of trash and general destruction. On this occasion, we arrived and found a man and a woman sitting by the water, and in a reversal of the usual situation, he had shorts on and she was naked. I was concerned that they planned to camp there, and if they had, I had a "Plan B" site in mind, but it's not as good. So I decided to approach them and ask how long they were staying, and it seemed best to do it naked! So that's what I did, and in fact when the woman first saw me she reached for clothing, but then she relaxed and put it down again. They said they were just there to enjoy the spot for an hour or two, so we set up our chairs and table a little way away, and read books and made a cup of tea. Eventually they left and we moved in and claimed the site. We didn't see anyone else for the rest of our time there. By the way, this is a site for railroad enthusiasts, because the main line between Boston and Albany is just the other side of the river. Business must be good for CSX Transportation Inc, because we didn't get an uninterrupted might's sleep! In spite of low water in the river, the swimming was pretty good. Since Kathy doesn't favor minimalist camping, we took our large tent, and folding chairs and table. Does this make it a "glamping" trip?

The next day we got a late start, but it didn't matter. After taking down our campsite and having another swim, we moved on to Littleville Lake. That's an artificial lake created to defend towns downstream from flooding, so it needs to be kept at low level. Even so, it's a couple of miles long, with boat ramps at each end. In hopes of evading power boats, we used the upper ramp, but in fact there wasn't a motor anywhere on the entire lake that day. I haven't got any pictures of our craft under way, but I paddled most of the lake nude, both ways.

We got dinner at a roadside restaurant with outdoor dining, but then had to finish our meal in the car when a rainstorm suddenly struck! However, just up the road on the 2nd or 3rd highest bridge in the state (depending on the tide in Boston Harbor) we drove straight toward a rainbow. All a very excellent trip.

We set up our table and chairs on a level spot overlooking the river.

I gathered wood so we could have a fire in the evening, but we never got around to lighting it. Maybe someone will use the wood.

The boat is on the ground so we can get the tailgate open.

Does that rock across the river look like a bison lying down?

With the big tent and table and chairs, maybe we’re glamping!

A fake picture, because I wasn’t actually cooking anything.

Boat loaded on car, and we’re ready to go.

Paddling down Littleville Lake, from the swampy end where the stream comes in.

Our lunch spot with flowers growing in the water.

A local resident ignored us.

I thought this picture would show how I was easting lunch with my feet in the water!

Looking down to the dam. The Corps of Engineers keeps the lake partly full, but the level might rise if there’s a flood.

The boat ramp near the dam, where we met a lady with a solo kayak. She’d gone to retrieve her car when I took the picture.

View up the lake from the boat ramp.

Heading back up the lake, with a tail wind kicking up very small waves.

An intrepid paddler!

This is the Facebook version.

A bonus—on the way home we drove through a shower of rain, and there was a fine rainbow over the French King Bridge.

Trip reports / Western Massachusetts again
« on: July 26, 2020, 04:54:50 AM »
The previous trip was somewhat in the way of exploration, and this was a repeat. I had persuaded 4 friends to sign up, but there was a dubious weather forecast and it ended up as just Dan and me, and I was the only one who did it as an overnight. But Dan was very impressed with our first stop, a swimmin' hole with bootleg camping alongside (not as trashy as these places sometimes are) and a bonus railroad passing by. I discovered that place back in 1973, on a weekend just a few weeks after starting my first job. These places are all on or near the Westfield River, in "eastern western Massachusetts". We had a most excellent time.

The bug-eyed monster is my little tent, which I left without its flysheet as the weather was so pleasant. This place was a discovery from my previous trip, a “must camp” spot!

Dinner by the river, in front of a nice swimmin’ hole.

Sunset on the river bank.

By the campfire, with the camera set to flash.

Same again, but just taken by firelight.

Next day, I met Dan and we visited another swimmin’ hole.

Same person and place. Then we decided to hike down a hillside in search of waterfalls.

First we encountered this ruin. Dan’s best guess was a 1960s Ford Bronco.

We did find the waterfalls…

...but the amount of water was very small.

A dedicated skinny-dipper will make the best of any location!

We decided, after having come down so far, that we deserved a swim. So we continued to the river, a descent of 850 feet total.

Per ardua, ad aqua.

We thought it was worth it!

Next stop was the disused reservoir, with an old mill site nearby.

A swim here washed off the sweat from the 850 foot climb we’d just done.

I’m a fun guy too!

Now for some history—the Arches, built in the 1830s.

Certainly the engineering is interesting.

But also, there are several lovely swimmin’ holes here.

Also a small waterfall flowing in.

Last sip before we hit the road.

It is a somewhat vertical road.

Dan salutes CSX Transportation!

And a final salute above the pool before we walked out in a warm rain. And then home.

Naturism & Art / What's in this picture?
« on: July 07, 2020, 04:11:09 AM »

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