So how old is your average sea kayaker these days? 121? Sorry, but you know it’s true. Now we’ve talked about this issue a zillion times already and I’m not going to beat a dead Venezuelan tree frog here. Actually, the thing about age just popped into my head the other day when I found myself talking to someone about the safety of sea kayaking in general. Continue reading
I’m certainly not going to wade into the second guessing game that goes on with these sorts of incidents, but if you’re a sea kayaker or coach it would be worth your while to read this incident report about the events of October 4th in Netarts Bay off the coast of Oregon. Personally, I only have two rather general impressions; The first is that I feel for the author of the report, I totally hear where he’s coming from. Secondly, the sea is very big and we are very small. Nothing brings that closer to home than when we’re trying to solve a scary problem out there.
A kiss on the wind and we’ll make the land – k. bush
You could probably guess I was running a bit scattershot the last few days. It sure showed up this morning I can tell you. I ran the morning obstacle course out the door with the intent to be on the lake for day 8 of my 100 mile paddle. Getting to the lake was the easy part. Yeah, I was wearing my sexy base layers.. but what I didn’t do was bring my outer layers. Oops! Well, I was there wasn’t I? So with the sun shining through some broken clouds to the east I figured I could get away it. Continue reading
Pay Attention Idiot!!! Has anyone ever yelled something like that at you? Maybe they did but you just weren’t paying attention? I can’t remember ever taking that sort of abuse when I’ve paddled, but I’ve had my share of one finger solutes when driving I’m sure! Most of the time, the shouting has to do with simple human error being witnessed by someone of low intelligence, but sometimes, well, we should pay more attention.. Continue reading
don’t give up
‘cos you have friends
don’t give up
you’re not beaten yet
don’t give up
I know you can make it good – gabriel
Learn to know what you don’t know. Then know it. In some ways our lives are way too simple. We get up, we eat, we drive the same route to work each day, we do a job we’ve done for a thousand years, then drive the same route home, eat and then veg in front of a television. Days pass. Weeks turn into months and months into years. There’s nothing wrong with that exactly, but it may lead us to feel way too secure in what we think we know. Then suddenly, shockingly things can go very wrong. Continue reading
As a sea kayaking coach I see lots of kayaks & gear on the water each year. I have the opportunity to see how students actually use their gear, how it works for them and how sometimes it really fails. Take these Cam-Clips for instance. I’ve ranted about them in the past, but they never seem to go away either. They’re like a bad dream that just lingers in your memory and ruins your day. Why? Well, the first time I was introduced to these Current Design’s hooky-strappy things, a student was working on a layback roll. When they rolled the kayak, they put their back against the hull, slid a bit, and hooked the shoulder strap of their PFD under the cam lever! They were stuck. It was a really scary moment for them and not a very pleasant introduction to rolling a kayak either. Even after I rolled them up, they couldn’t just sit up. They had to slide back off the clip, (after we figured it out.) then sit up. It wouldn’t be hard to imagine that under duress and upside down, a person may never realize they have to slide to their left to get free.. Then what? Continue reading
The problem with ultra low-calorie beer is that it tastes like something akin to beer flavored mineral water. Add a lemon or lime and it’s not so bad! The trick with beer (or any alcohol) and boating is to leave the bottle closed until after you’re off the water. When it comes to kayaking, I’ll admit that a couple of times I’ve done it the other way round. That was enough to teach me what a stupid idea that was. Even a very slight buzz is enough to make you a sloppy, inefficient paddler. Not to mention inattentive and slow. I’m sorry, you need your reaction time on the water every bit as much as you need it on the road. It seems like someone is always giving speeches about how drinking and boating don’t mix. I’m not going to preach, I’m just going to say there’s no point. It’s no fun anyway. Save the beer the end of the day. Hopefully you don’t have to settle for low-cal!