Covid-19 Information

Click here for the most current State of Maine information on the Covid-19 situation.

Buying, Fitting & Delivering Your New Covid-Clean Kayak
NDK Pilgrim Carbon Kevlar

Covid-19’s first wave hit just as your and our new set of NDK’s were unloaded from our pre-season container. All are now stored on Peaks or in MIKCo’s Portland warehouse. So all sit in dry, protected storage until we can get your new boat(s) to you.

While we’re all figuring and adjusting to this Brave New World of reduced movement and "sheltering in place", I have prepped and delivered a couple of our paddlers’ custom ordered brand new NDKs - in what I believe is a highly risk-reduced process, as I know some of you hope to paddle before this Covid Thing subsides sometime well into the summer or Fall. If you’re a buyer of one of our new MIKCo in-stock retail boats … same process.

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Before these Boats Arrived in Maine

All of our current custom and new retail Nigel Dennis Kayaks were built at the SKUK factory, Holyhead, Anglesey, North Wales no later than January, 2020. Thus I feel it safe to represent these boats as coronavirus- free on manufacture. Then each kayak was wrapped at the factory in bubble wrap plus a clean poly sheet material, and taped closed so no part of the boat’s surface was exposed. Factory guys then loaded the container in January, which was locked by customs until we opened it here in Portland about 6 weeks later. MIKCo unloads and stores each still-factory wrapped and sealed kayaks in our locked-up, dry, inside warehouse storage racks. To date, the science indicates that the Covid-19 virus is unlikely to have survived on composite or plastic for the last few months.

For All New Boat Purchasers

At this point, I feel comfortable indicating that a new wrapped boat transferred from our warehouse onto your car’s kayak rack is a very low risk venture regarding Covid-19. Once loaded onto your car, we can cut off the packaging before you depart, OR when home you can don gloves and use a knife or shears to cut off the packaging, bag it and dispose of it. From them on its only your cooties on it!

For MIKCo’s New Custom Ordered Boat Purchasers and Those Seeking Outfitting

As you may know, Tom B. usually custom foams and outfits new boats for our full price buyers/paddlers who seek same. We feel that such outfitting offers that extra control, on-water-confidence and safety flowing from the personalized fitting of thigh, hip and bulkhead foam to support effective, efficient use of your lower body contact in bumpy water; kneecap position and height, femur structure, hamstring and hip flexibility, pelvis angle are all relevant. BUT you and I can’t do this so much right now. However, as I’ve done hundreds of paddler specific outfitting of NDK’s, if I collect needed physical data of your lower body physique, I do feel confident about cutting and shaping a close approximation for you, though it'll side on the "looser" fit. The glue I use makes it easy to (without damage), later reshape or replace to complete your fitting.

After completing this boat work, I wipe down all primary surfaces with acetone, especially in and around the cockpit, alcohol on the rest. Then gloved up, I rewrap your new boat with its two protective layers, which I then move/transfer into our locked Portland storage unit. You make an appointment, we meet outside, staying 6’ plus apart, and we load your new boat onto your vehicle. I’d listen to any alternative or suggested modifications to this plan?

So, what do you think? Ready to paddle?

Peaks Island and our Casco Bay Lines Ferry
Machigonne II departing from Peaks Island

Maine, Portland, Casco Bay Lines and all of us on Peaks Island, now expect all of us to be wearing a face mask when in public where physical distancing is challenged. Please. CBL service is restricted to essential services and business travel. Governor Mills and our CDC has continued Maine’s 14 day self-quarantine obligation for out-of-staters not involved in essential services or work related travel.

For the most updated information on our Casco Bay Lines ferry:

Covid-19 and the Common Good
Kayak Beach in Winter

Our legal rights are important, but always must be balanced with everyone else's interests. I spent years as a lawyer fighting for our constitutional and legal rights; do think I'm qualified to suggest they are the lowest standard of conduct, the minimum legal right guaranteed to us, one step about illegal.

So despite my firm support and belief in our guaranteed rights, I am far more appreciative of all those seeking to live their lives on higher ethical spiritual or other moral values.

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My letter to Next Door

Islanders, Friends, People,

Thanks to all seeking to keep our overall Common Interest ahead of each of our individual secondary needs. That is exactly what 'flattening the curve' is all about in this Brave New World at least for an unknown spell, Particular thanks to our daily commuting health care workers, essential service folks, our Hannigan's market, Food Pantry and other food handlers, CBL people, and other utility workers. Without your commitment, risk and service our island ways would be, and likely will be, far more severely challenged and harmful to one of the oldest population groups in the country.

So to all of our Islanders, Friends and Visitors moving around freely, especially those citing their 'individual rights' vs our community interest, or those not staying current with our health and medical folks' worries and fears about their lack of personal protection, fear of too many patients, of being able to meet to do their job safely for all...I ask you to recognize most of us Don't Have Another Place to Go To, and please answer 2 questions for yourself before you exercise your 'choice' to come visit us right now:

  1. Is your choice to "visit" adding to the Community Cure or to the Risk of the Problem?
  2. Can you look in the eye of that overly stressed, probably tired, health care worker in Portland who is sacrificing for us all, and say to them: "I'm not worried about you taking my possible exposure home to your kids."?

Every movement amongst others has an increased risk to us all. All of us who live here who we know and see daily, we know something about their daily exposures, and we can question and probably verify their human contacts, hence we can better analyze the risk.

I'd suggest that it is fair to ask our Islanders, Friends and Visitors if you care of the Common Good and are actively being part of our Cure. No you don't have to answer affirmatively, but please know that we have a calm, accepting and long term memory.

Thanks for considering,

Tom Bergh, 70 Luther St.