Mailbag: Newport needs bike lanes more than paddleboard lanes

September 17, 2012
  • FRIENDLY COMPETITION: Kevin Spitzer, center, attempts to knock Jacob Scuder off his paddleboard as Sevin Gentry tries to upend Spitzer on Wednesday in the Back Bay. The three are part of the Newport Aquatic Center rowing team
FRIENDLY COMPETITION: Kevin Spitzer, center, attempts… (SCOTT SMELTZER,…)

Newport Beach needs bicycle lanes along Coast Highway, not stand-up paddling lanes in Newport Harbor. Why should stand-up paddlers be restricted in their movements, while Pavilion rental boats, swimmers, yacht club sailboats, kayaks, homeowner Duffy boats, prone paddlers, city-sponsored aquatic activity members and Aquatic Center users roam free?

Shouldn't there be a lane for that jet packing concern in the turning basin? Who is more visible on the water, a swimmer or a stand-up paddler?

Does City Councilwoman Leslie Daigle have statistics for her claim that paddlers present a danger, or is she just knuckling under to a few well-heeled boat owners who throw support her way during the election season?

I see boaters with a beer or wine glass in their hand all the time in Newport Harbor. I have yet to see a paddler doing the same. Who is creating the greater risk here?

Stand-up paddling is a sport that many can enjoy, and Newport Harbor provides an ideal setting. I suggest Daigle follow Mayor Nancy Gardner's lead and give it a try.


She might discover that it's much more enjoyable than being a nanny to the rest of us.

Mike Novak

San Clemente


No paddle lanes

Seriously? Paddle lanes?

What's next — an amusement park in the harbor?

I've read some ridiculous suggestions by our City Council members, but this one takes the cake! Perhaps during the summer months, relegating a specific section of the harbor to beginning paddleboarders might make more sense. The speed limit in the harbor is 5 mph for boaters, who adhere to that speed limit.

I paddleboard three to four times a week while boats are making their way in and out of the harbor. Believe me, we can manage without the help of the City Council.

By the way, in Hawaii, they actually have military ships in and out of Pearl Harbor, which may explain the reasoning for more restrictive stand-up paddleboarding rules!

Juli Hayden

Newport Beach


Newport police don't use Lackie, Dammeier & McGill

Please be advised that Newport Beach Police Assn. is not now, and has never been, represented by the law firm of Lackie, Dammeier & McGill (LDM). Moreover, NBPA wishes to go on record as opposing any unethical tactics that LDM might have employed in Costa Mesa, Buena Park, El Monte or elsewhere.

Daily Pilot Articles Daily Pilot Articles