Day 2 of the 90Miler starts below the bridge at Long Lake, heads northeast under the Route 30 bridge, past Round Island and the Camp Islands, and into the Raquette River, just before the end of the Lake at Turtle Beach. The River flows rather swiftly here up to the Raquette Falls. There are multiple warnings here about not going further on the River past the entrance to the carry. One that I (Gordon) remember most vividly is the hulk of a battered and torn up aluminum canoe set upright at the carry entrance. The carry around the falls is one of the longest of the 90 Miler, about one mile. It is rough going, hilly, bumpy and stony.
Here is an old illustration of a guide setting off on the carry. Note that these guideboats are early models with a transom on their stern. Around 1870 guideboat builders adopted the double-ended design. This was perhaps to allow the boats to be easier to carry or to make them somewhat lighter.
Once completing the carry, racers join the Raquette River. This leg of the race concludes at the public launch, called the “crusher” on the Raquette River. It is just north of the town of Tupper Lake. It is called the crusher since there used to be a large stone crusher there when Route 30 was built.
Jon’s narrative of Day 2 follows: “A good night’s sleep and solid breakfast energized us for Day 2, a 30 mile run from Endion in Long Lake to the “crusher” boat launch near Tupper Lake. We got off the starting line well, benefiting from a tailwind push down Long Lake.
We pulled away gradually today, confident in our lead but not wanting to give an inch. We had several guideboats in sight as we entered the Raquette River. The boost the current gave us was welcome and we cruised easily into the Raquette River Carry.
The carry is a mile long slog up and over the Raquette Falls, Never has it been easy but it was an especially brutal climb this year with a fully laden guideboat. We had our drinking water supply in back packs. This allowed us to lighten the load and carry some stuff on our backs. Our goal here was to move efficiently and quickly and get back into the water without sacrificing any time.
Back in the water we saw no guideboats in sight.
We spent the rest of the race catching and passing canoes. We were surprised and thrilled to finish Day 2 still maintaining a solid lead over any other guideboat.
One more day to go. Day 3 will prove to be the most difficult of the three legs.