I was really excited to get an email late yesterday from Richard Parkin, the editor of Ocean Paddler Magazine announcing that the latest issue is hot off the press and available for download (print copies were going out in a day or so).
I have been waiting for this one as I had a feature article on kayaking around Michipicoten Island on Lake Superior. Since nobody except my mother would be ever interested in reading a pure trip diary type article I decided to talk more about the history of the island and why I think it’s one of the best places to paddle on Lake Superior. I wrote from the perspective that if somebody from the UK is looking to visit Canada and paddle a challenging route, Michicipicoten Island needs to be on your bucket list.
Well it looks like Heisenberg is still sorting out some distribution issues.
Australian police discovered a shipment of methamphetamine worth approximately $163 million (US) this week. What makes this slightly unique is that they found the nearly 400 pound haul stuffed in amongst a shipment of kayaks coming out of China. 19 of the 27 kayaks in the in the shipping container was filled with meth.
This guy just moved into his first apartment and hasn't gotten around to purchasing a sofa yet. He gets my vote for having the right priorities.
Thinking about it a bit more, this reminds me of two other friends below who also had their priorities in order when they decided to trade the entertainment center for a canoe.
This past weekend I had the immense pleasure to be invited to teach at the 6th annual Golden Gate Sea Kayak Symposium in San Francisco.
Organized by Matt Palmariello and Sean Morley, GGSKS is aimed at advanced beginners and intermediate paddlers who want to push the envelope and paddle in rougher waters in a welcoming and controlled environment.
Looking for a challenge today? Find the kayak in the word search above. Here is a hint; the word appears only once.
The idea for this comes from Charles Lohr who decided to see how hard it would be for a computer to build a word search based on only the letters you gave it.
I wrote a program that creates them in C. It took about 30 minutes. It simply produces letters from a list of letters I provide it, and checks to make sure that the word in the search does not show up. If that word does show up, it starts rewriting some letters. Eventually, it creates a wordsearch without the word that you're searching for.
For me, the worst part about paddling in the winter is the cold hands. It seems that no matter what I try my thumbs are always unhappy inside of 30 minutes.
To help address the problem, UK wetsuit manufacturer, Ianovated has come up with a unique wetsuit design with an integrated breathing tube to deliver hot air directly to your hands.
The idea is that when your fingers get cold, all you need to do is blow into the tube and deliver a stream of hot air. The manufacturer says it works well with both gloves and open palm mitts.
So far the wetsuit has been marketed towards the wind surfing community but I think it could easily be used for paddling due to its loose fit above the waist for freedom of movement. To keep the top from filling up with water it has a neoprene gasket that you can tighten.
Here is a quick video of the suit in action.
Right now Ianovated has a deal going on where all their suits are £250 ($415US). You can also give the new suit a try for six weeks and if it doesn't work out you can return it for any reason. That's a pretty generous offer.
More info: ianovated.co.uk
Photo credits: ianovated
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:
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: downwindsports.com/lol/
Flickr photo credits: bill_yumi