I can't believe that The Golden Gate Sea Kayak Symposium starts in less than a week away! I'm sooooo excited about it. Looking the teaching schedule, I was pleased to discover that I'm assisting on three full-day sessions which include: Rock Gardening Skills & Safety with Roger Schumann and Cate Hawthorne Advanced Boat Control Master Class with Jen Kleck and John Dye Alcatraz SF Bay Journey with Gordon Brown and Bryant Burkhardt To help prep for the weekend I decided to turn to Hollywood to tell me what to do. Last night was all about Sean Connery and Nicolas Cage in The Rock. They had to run around Alcatraz and save San Francisco from a nerve gas attack while this morning I got ready for the inevitable a real life car chase by watching that famous chase scene from the movie Bullitt. Here it is below because Steve McQueen has never been cooler and the movie is 100% awesome. Other than that I just need to pack and figure out how I'm going to get my gear on the plan while keep within the super restrictive bag requirements. Photo credit: GGSKS
Hey all you paddling dames, Looks like it could be the last year for the infamous (it's not just famous, it's IN-famous) Ladies of the Lake symposium. A note was posted on the organizers website (Down Wind Sports) that due to dwindling participation and rising costs, it's proving to be a difficult event to run. Gladly they announced that they are going to give it another kick at the can for its 10th anniversary but for it to run it's going to need 100 registrants for their deadline of June 1. This year the Ladies of the Lake Symposium will be taking place in Munising, Michigan on August 14-17. If you have never attended before (and you are a lady) you really need to add it to your calendar. Over the weekend they offer a huge boat-load of kayak instructional clinics for beginners to experts in a super low-pressure environment. Ladies of the Lake is perfect if you are the type of person who gets intimidated by the macho-man image that sometimes comes along with the sport or even these types of events. This year they are doing some sort of cowboy theme and they should have more details shortly on their website. I know last year it was all about pirates and I have a foggy memory of seeing photos of some sort of 1930's flapper dinner party a couple of years ago. Though it is titled, "Ladies of the Lake", you are welcome to drag your man along. To keep him from getting bored, there is a separate Man Camp program taking place on Saturday. The website describes it as, "Man Camp gives those without the proper gender specific equipment needed to attend Ladies of the Lake a way to have some fun on the water and fine-tune their own paddling skills." Ladies of the Lake is one of the very few woman-specific kayak symposiums taking place in North America so if you have considered it in the past, show your support and get yourself registered early. Remember, the deadline is June 1. More info: Flickr photo…
The Bay of Fundy Sea Kayak Symposium is looking for coaches for the weekend so if that tweaks your interest read the email and apply pronto: The Bay of Fundy Sea Kayak Symposium is currently building their coaching team for the 2014 event to be held September 12-15, 2014 in Argyle, Nova Scotia, Canada. The process is open to Paddle Canada, BCU and ACA sea kayak coaches. There is an application to be filled out and submitted by prospective coaches. Please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Application deadline is January 15, 2014. Application can be downloaded here. If you have never paddled the Bay of Fundy in Atlantic Canada before you need to consider attending this year for sure. It's a beautiful place and last year's event was very well received. Justine Curgenven attended last year and recently posted this teaser trailer for her new short film, Fundy Fun.
I was terribly excited to get an email from the organizers of the Golden Gate Sea Kayak Symposium inviting me to come teach at this year on January 31 through to February 2, 2014. The GGSKS has been on my bucket list for many years and I’m thrilled to finally make the trip out to San Francisco. Now in its 6th year; the GGSKS has proven to be the premier rough water paddling event in North America and one of the best in the world. The reasons are simple, the location is superb and the list of coaches is first rate. As you can tell by the name, the symposium takes place in Horseshoe Bay right in the heart of San Francisco in the shadow of the Golden Gate Bridge. How cool is that? Paddling in the area is first rate with lots of rock gardens, tidal currents & surf so paddlers of all abilities will be happy. As far as coaches, the teaching list this year looks pretty first rate with the likes of Sean Morley, Gordon Brown, Rob Avery, Christopher Lockyer, Jen Kleck, Ginni Callahan, Ben Lawry, Cindy & Steve Scherrer, Leon Sommé, Paul Kuthe, Matt Nelson all going to be there. This is just a partial list of coaches so check out the website for more info. The full weekend schedule should be posted soon (Update: it's posted now!) but in the past they have offered courses focused around topics like rock hopping, surf, working in tides and current and navigation. They will also be offering several ACA and BCU training courses during both the weekend as well during the week afterwards. Keep an eye on the website for the full course descriptions. So should you attend the Golden Gate Sea Kayak Symposium? The short answer is yes. The event is designed for a wide range paddlers with skills ranging between advanced beginner up to advanced intermediate. If you are interested in working on your rough water paddling skills, this is the place for you. More info: ggsks.comPhoto credits: Dominick Lemarie courtesy of the GGSKS.  
Even though the Lumpy Waters Symposium took place just last weekend out in Pacific City, Oregon, several short films have already been released and boy do they look good. The first one was filmed during the coach's day just before the event started and includes paddlers, Rob Yates, Roger Schumann, Sean Morley and Jamie Klein. Chris Bensch shot and filmed this bad-boy. I don't need to point out the height of those waves but look at them!

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