The Allen Harbor Canal Throw – Doable or Too Far?
Allen Harbor is located in the Quonset Point section of North Kingstown, RI. It features a dog park, multiple beach accesses, a busy marina, and stunning views of Narragansett Bay. It is where my wife and I got engaged and also the canal we sailed through on our way to getting married out in the middle of Narragansett Bay some years back. Our 2 Weims, Rookie and Nora, love exploring over there. In the summer, there is a lot of activity with the boats passing through the canal, fishing on the beaches on either side of the canal, and families enjoying this amazing spot.
Each time I have visited the canal on the opposite side of the Allen Harbor Marina, I think to myself “could I throw a rock from here to there? Or maybe have a game of catch with someone on the other side there.” There being Calf Pasture Point. From the Allen Harbor Marina side of the canal looking over to the Calf Pasture Point side, it doesn’t really seem like that big of a stretch. Over the years, and making sure no one is traveling through, I have attempted to throw rocks from one side to the other, and have failed every single time. Sure sometimes I can get a rock about halfway or a little further if my arm is feeling strong. Sometimes I get a little momentum and hurl it like I am trying to throw out a runner on a tag play at home plate, only to see the rock land just about the same spot halfway across the canal. Bummer.
Yesterday , the 26th of January, was an incredible morning for a winter walk. 50° temps, wow very seasonal for January, so I took a walk over to the bike path which has awesome views of Allen Harbor. On my way down and back in the short loop, I stopped at a park bench and took a long look over Allen Harbor and saw the canal from a different vantage point. This vantage point spurned me on to do some research into the possibility of whether I could throw a rock or a baseball from one side of the canal to the other. This blog is the first of many to establish an answer to this burning question (well its sort of simmering, not burning) – The Allen Harbor Canal Throw – Doable or Too Far? This should be fun…
Roughly estimating through Google Maps, I was able to calculate the distance from one side of the canal to the other – about 300 feet. Now that is from shore to shore with the rock/baseball landing on the edge of the shore on the other side. Great for the rock situation, but if you are playing catch the distance may actually be slighting further to account for the height of the person you are playing catch with. See, I told you this was going to be fun. So, it is about 300 feet of distance across the canal. What size rock would you need? How about the wind speed traveling through the canal, will that knock down your throw? What arm angle and what arm speed and how much velocity will you need to throw your rock or baseball across? The physics of the Allen Harbor throw will come in a later blog. Let’s just say, there are a number of external factors that need to be considered including the size of the rock, the wind, the sandy patch of beach you are throwing from, and so on.
Now by way of comparison, here are a few examples of how far 300 feet is:
300 feet at North Kingstown’s Rolling Greens Golf Course gets you headed in the right direction on the 1st Hole! My tee shots tend to be 300 feet in the wrong direction on the golf course, unlike this straight shot.
300 feet is the length of Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, MA as well as every other football stadium that I have ever been to. That’s because 300 feet is equal to 100 yards. Do you think a football player could heave a football across the Allen Harbor Canal? Anything is possible…
A 300 feet heave from center field in Fenway Park to nab a potential base runner (hopefully from the NYY) heading for home? Probably not a stretch for a major league baseball player whose throwing arm is in tip top shape. Me? I would be lucky to hit the cut off man standing at or around 2nd base at this junction of my athletic career.
I am going to reach out to a few experts in the fields of math, throwing a baseball/rock, and weather conditions and get some expert advice and analysis on this matter. Also, I plan on shooting a bunch of video in the coming weeks and months of me attempting to throw a rock from one side to the other. Again making sure no boaters or animals are harmed in the process. This should be a fun exercise and it may lead to the answer of this simmering, I mean burning question – The Allen Harbor Canal Throw – Doable or Too Far?
Clinics and Conditioning IN THE COMMUNITY TRAVEL air speed velocity allen harbor baseball throw canal throw fenway park golf course north kingstown physics quonset
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