Thursday, 13 September 2007 17:36

Injured by He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named

Harry Potter I'm going bald. I have known then for years but I recently was made aware of it again when a scar appeared through the thinning shoreline. I haven't seen it since I was 7. I don't really remember a whole lot except for tears and stitches.

I have decided to tell people that I got the scar from Lord Voldermort since it prickles every once and a while.

I will fill you in if I start to see visions.

Thursday, 13 September 2007 17:16

Trouble at Eagle Bluff

Looks like an outfitter in Okalahoma has been a little naughtily and gotten caught. It seems that Eagle Bluff Resort tried to sell 110 state-issued flotation licenses to a competitor. To purchase them from the state, it costs $5. They tried to sell them to a competitor who was looking for them for $500 each. A nice tidy profit of over 10,000 percent.

They sent a contract to Arrowhead Camp asking them to sign the contract and send a deposit of $5,000.

A quote from the cover letter: "The offer is not made to make profit on our investment, so the price and the terms are not open to negotiation."

"I am constantly amazed when I learn more about this underground currency," said State Sen. Jim Wilson. "You cannot sell state property. These float operators try to treat the licenses as chattel. They try to get bank loans using their license capacity as proof of potential income. They don't own the licenses. They are not collateral."

There has got to be more to this story as there are always two sides to it. I mean, who send a notarized contact over to a competitor asking them to pay cash when you haven't even been approved for the permits yet? It just leaves you open for...well, you know...bad press.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it." target="_blank"> Contact us if you know what is going on.

[More info]

Jackson Kayak LogoClaiming it is the Number One Jackson Kayak boat yet to be released, Jackson Kayak will re-introduce the Hero series of river running boats in time for Christmas.
Wednesday, 12 September 2007 20:00

Site Tip - My friend Serge Savard just directed me to It is an animated Sea Kayak Instruction website. It has full flash animations on all the basic information for somebody just getting started into kayaking.

It's absolutely fantastic and I'm completely blown away.

Thanks for the tip Serge!
Wednesday, 12 September 2007 19:37

Book Review - Sea Kayaking Strokes

Sea Kayak Strokes Visit your local the book section at your local outdoor store and you will find a boatload of books on sea kayaking skills. Generally speaking they are written towards the novice paddler and cover a wide range of skills from packing your boat to how to keep your boat going straight.
Sea Kayak Strokes written by Doug Alderson is slightly different in that it only covers the foundation skills for paddling. By leaving out all the other areas of kayaking like rescues, camping or navigation skills, Alderson is able to focus and go into an immense amount of detail for each different boat-control skill or paddling stroke.

Doug Alderson is a very analytical thinker and it is very evident as you read through the book. In it, he has taken each skill and broken it down into key points, application for real life and exercises to work on common mistakes.

Coghlan's committed to Social Enterprise and Outdoor Accessories.
Monday, 10 September 2007 18:40

Paddling Raft-up for September 10, 2007

Toronto was really hopping this past weekend. It is a large city but with so many events in Toronto this past weekend, it made life getting around town nuts. There was the Toronto International Film Festival, 4 run for Cancer runs, and the Virgin music festival . Oh yes, one of the major highways through town was closed for repairs. Ahh our sweet and aging Gardiner Expressway. All of those events just want to make you hunker down in your apartment and weather the traffic storm.

But no, we braved through the urban environment and took advantage of the small craft wind warning to catch some of the best surfing that I have had in a very very long time. We found a nice beach on the south side of the Toronto Island with a very gentle slope. There were no wind waves, just nice large swells pounding in. Most were an accurate 2 feet but there were several 3.5-4 footers out there aiming to kill us.

The other thing about being out there on Sunday was (as mentioned above) the Virgin Music festival was also taking place on the Island. There really is nothing like surfing and listening to some solid rock and roll from the Tokyo Police Club and Canadian indy heros, Stars.

What else is going on our there?

Team Jackson Kayak runs the Niagara Gorge
Erik Jackson and the rest of the gang from Jackson Kayak have made a successful run of the famed Niagara Gorge. The river flows at 100,000cfs. Yeah that is big. It is also illegal to run it. Here is a crazy photo of their run. [Jackson Kayak]

Dead canoeist identified
They were able to identify the kayaker who was recently hit by a vessel in the English Channel over the weekend. It is Robert Andrew Deacon, 42, from The Riviera in Sandgate, Kent. [The Argus]

Kayak crossing postponed again
Canadian Paddle Canada instructor, Chris Lockyer has been forced to postpone his 70km crossing of the Bay of Fundy to raise money for Cancer. So far he has raised $11,000 for cancer research. The weather has been bad. []

Mystery Solved
A month ago, a large search was underway looking for a couple that rented an inflatable kayak and started off to paddle the English Chanel. They have been found living as a French church. It turns out that he is wanted by British Police for downloading kiddy porn. He got caught when he ran out of money and phoned his day to wire him some cash. His dad called the police. [Daily Mail]
At the recent Outdoor Retailer Summer Market show Esquif Canoes solidified its relationship with Northeast US industry veteran, Don Otey.

"We feel very fortunate to be working with Don in the North eastern territory", says Sales Manager Nikki Rekman, "Don's reputation precedes him and together we expect great growth in the coming year. Esquif had a very successful 2007 season. The upcoming year is looking positive; the addition of Don to an already strong sales team gets us excited about what is in store for Esquif in 2008."

Kokatat LogoArcata, CA - In September of 2007 the Expedition Amazonas team will trek and paddle, totally unsupported, for over 7 months and 7000km, the entire length of the mighty Amazon River.  This is a complete traverse of the South American continent from the Pacific Coast in Peru to the mouth of the Amazon River where it meets the Atlantic Ocean off Brazil.  The experienced expedition team includes members from Australia, South Africa and the United Kingdom.  Expedition Amazonas has partnered with environmental and indigenous rights action group Amazon Watch, and high-profile equipment sponsors including Kokatat, Teva and First Ascent.

Sunday, 09 September 2007 07:13

Tips to avoid an on water collision

This morning I came upon this article which shook me up. It seems that a body was found about two miles offshore from Rye in the English Channel. The kayaker's boat was found floating near by.

The coastguard said that man's injuries and the damage to the canoe suggested he had been run down by a ship and killed.

Over the past summer, there have been several different reports of large boats running over canoe, kayaks and small sail boats.

Kayak Collision Before, I could never understand how a paddler could get run over by a boat. I always figured that one could always move out of the way in time. My opinion of it changed this summer after hearing about a friend of the family whose little fishing boat was run over by a large powerboat. According to them, they were out fishing on a clear, calm day when they looked up just in time to see a large boat bearing down on them. They just had enough time to dive off the side of the boat before impact. They were fine but sadly the boat was quite damaged. It is schedule to go to court this fall.

So, how can we keep ourselves from getting hit on the water? The first thing is to be vigilant on the water. Watch the other boaters and assume that they can't see you. To be honest, the majority probably can't. They are big so it is easy for you to see them but a canoe or kayak is barely three feet out of the water. When there are medium swells and you are in the trough of the wave, you are even lower in the water. Keep that in mind.

Follow the rules of the road. Just because you are in a canoe or kayak doesn't mean that you need to follow the rules like everybody else. If possible, avoide the shipping channels since that is where the large boats are going to be.

Consider a radar reflector.  There are several different commercial models on the market with various levels of success. Basically they allow your boat to show up on the larger vessels radar system. The main draw back is that not all small or recreational boats use radar for navigation.

If you are paddling through navigational channels, you could consider a Collision Avoidance Radar Detector (C.A.R.D.) system. The C.A.R.D. system is a device that you mount on your boat that detects the presence of radar systems in your area. The monitor will tell you from which direction the radar system is coming from so you can take evasive action.

The drawback to the C.A.R.D system is that it is another electronic system to fail on your boat. It is built for a marine environment but not likely submersible so you will need to be careful with it around water. If you could develop a way to store it in a clear waterproof case, it might work better.

If you are doing extended night crossings, it might be something worth looking into.

Have you had experience with any of the devices above or have a tip to avoid a collision on the water? Let us know how they worked out by posting a comment below.

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