Paddling Planet

December 09, 2018


Pepparkaksbygget 2018

Inför årets pepparkaksbygge kände vi för ett projekt med något färre cylindrar och dubbelkrökta ytor.  De orsakar liksom lätt lite dålig stämning i köket. Kluriga som attan att få till och går ju lätt sönder – förstås!

Efter lite funderande så blev det plötsligt alldeles självklart. Spårö Båk – förstås! Ståtlig, vacker och välkänd. Och framför allt nyrenoverad. Kändes helt rätt att lyfta fram detta efterlängtade faktum.

Bifogar nedan en samling av tidigare pepparkaksbyggen.

God Jul! 🙂

Spårö Båk är ett av de vackraste sjömärkena på ostkusten. Kanske till och med det vackraste nu när Sjöfartsverket under hösten 2018 renoverat båken och den dessutom fått status som byggnadsminne. Med sina 25 meter står den på Spåröberget och syns långt, långt över skärgården. Den stod färdig 1777. Genom luckor i takets östra sida stack man vid nattetid och otjänligt väder ut järnkorgar med brinnande tjärved. På detta sätt användes Spårö båk fram till 1884

Bilden på båken  är några år gammal och lånad från Västerviks Tidning, och som synes är båken i uselt skick. På de andra bilderna ser ni Spårö båk från havet. Tänk vad den skulle glänsa och stråla om den fick lite färg och omtanke. Det är den värd! (Skrev jag 2016).

Jodå – så här grann och ståtlig blev hon efter höstens renovering. (Bild från Walters Foto)

2017 Storkläppen, Tjust skärgård, nordost Västervik

2015 Hallands Väderö, Skåne, väster Torekov

2012 Östra Bokö, Blekinge, öster Karlshamn

2010 Lilla Bergö, Misterhult, norr Oskarshamn

by Christian Cronberg at December 09, 2018 09:58 pm

Northwest Explorer

Sea Lions of Benjamin Island 2018

We frequently encounter the Steller SeaLion (Eumetopias jubatus) during our sea kayak outings along the Northwest coast. The kayak’s exceptional mobility and stealth provides an excellent opportunity to observe and study their behavior, both in the waters around us, and occasionally when they hall out to rest on ancient slabs of rock at water’s edge.

From a secluded harbor we paddled for several hours, first along a rocky forested coastline, then around the sandy fringes of an expansive delta, and after a short offshore crossing arrived at the southeastern end of Benjamin Island.

The much older Tlingit name for the island Taan X'aat'I (Sea Lion House) seemed more to the point for us, as we made our camp just inside the tree line. From here our plans included hiking around to the other side of the island and observing the Sea Lions from the cliffs above.

It was early spring and the rainforest undergrowth was just wakening up from winter’s slumber when we arrived. Luckily steady cold breezes from the ocean worked in our favor and carried our sent away from the shoreline. Moving quietly we followed game trails along the parameter of the island that slowly rose in elevation to overhanging cliffs and rocks on the western side.  

We moved forward to the edge of the rocks slowly in order to not alert the Sea Lions to our presence or otherwise change their behavior. From our concealment we were able to photograph and video the colony below undetected. We sat on our perch and observed their interactions, looking to capture with our cameras moments of social relationships between individual Sea lions.

When it came to who’s who on the hall out the biggest bulls had the best situated slabs of rock and plenty of room to lounge about, they also enjoyed their pick of the females. All other potential suitors or interlopers will have to fight for the privilege. This battle hardened champion’s face and neck bore the scars of many such encounters.    

Steller Sea Lions together are a gregarious and rowdy bunch, and their shoving and bellowing created a near constant ruckus as returning individuals arrived in search of family members and a spot to relax. Hard to believe that any of them gets much rest, but all this jostling about no doubt reinforces social bonds and hierarchy within the group.   

For us it was a privilege to visit the house of the Sea Lion and to observe first hand their remarkable lives on the island’s rocky shore. Before we left we circled the island in our kayaks making sure to stay well clear of the hall out (100 yards). At that distance we did not seem to affect their behavior so we stopped to admire them from a water level view.

 Continuing on around the island we stopped for snacks on a nearby smaller Island and gazed back towards Benjamin Island and surrounding coastline. Standing there on the pebbly beach we contemplated how fortunate we were that these natural treasures had been wisely protected for all of us to enjoy, Sea Lions included. 

“What speaks to the soul, escapes our measurements.” ― Alexander von Humboldt

by Art in Alaska ( at December 09, 2018 11:56 am

December 08, 2018
Wild swimming, cycling, sea kayaking, swimming and life in the Scottish Highlands

November Challenge #3: Explore Morocco

When I drew up my list of Challenges at the start of my 60th year, visiting Morocco was near the top.

I'm not sure why, but it's a place I've always fancied going.  I've been to Saudi Arabia and Kuwait but not this much more accessible and adventurous Kingdom.

As with my visit to Andalucia, the location came first, then I looked around for something to do.

Road cycling seemed the best way to avoid the crowds of tourists on the usual trekking routes, and I was drawn to the 'Tour of Toubkal' itinerary offered by KE Adventure Travel.

I have a history with the company, having done some work with them in the 1990s.  After speaking to the teamI decided this was the ride for me.  I was not disappointed.

I posted to Facebook a series of on-the-road videos, all shot and edited on my old iPhone 6 and I'll work them into a longer post about our cycling route.

Hopefully that will help anyone who fancies road cycling in Morocco.  That's still to come.  For now, here's the last video shot and edited in Marrakech at the end of the trip earlier this week before I flew home.

by Simon Willis ( at December 08, 2018 10:00 pm

Road Cycling in Morocco - Suggestions, Advice and Video

I spent seven days cycling a circuit of the Toubkal Massif in November 2018.

The date is important as road conditions change frequently.

I travelled with an organised group run by KE Adventure Travel and Hausser, who subcontracted the whole trip to Aventure Berbere and guide Hamid Outglaout.

If you need first-hand advice, I'd suggest checking with the locals and perhaps booking their services for a couple of days.

Despite having everything sorted for me, I learnt a lot about road cycling in Morocco that might be useful to independent travellers, or those going for the annual sportive, The Atlas Etape, and planning to stay a few days longer to travel around.  At the start of each day I've provided a distance and elevation gain, plus a link to a page on Ride With GPS where you can see the day's ride in detail and download the GPS tack in a variety of file types.

This is a long post!  But if you want the entire trip in one minute, watch the video I made for KE Adventure Travel.  Oh, and if you can add to the advice and information please do so in the comments.

Cycling conditions
Roads varied from smooth tarmac to cratered mud to broken pavement that threatened to dislodge the fillings from my teeth.

Weird colour, shot through minibus window
Other roads are being improved, but the roadworks created such devastation I wouldn't take my car on them, let alone attempt them on a bike.  I'm no chicken on a bike, but some road conditions were simply horrid.

Being a minibus passenger was bad enough.  It's the closest I've come to the Karakoram Highway since 1994.

For this trip I took my old, battered carbon Specialised Roubaix and fitted aluminium rim wheels with tough, new 25mm tyres.

If I'd had my ultralight bike with Enve wheels (carbon rims, bladed spokes and recessed nipples) I'd have wept at their unavoidable mistreatment.

Most of our group rented bikes.  I was pleased to have my own.  If renting, at least take pedals and saddle.  If you're touring independently then spare spokes and a tyre boot, plus the knowledge of how to use them, would be essential.

I was healthy throughout but got sick at the end once we returned to Marrakech, as did some other members of our group.  Bottles of clean water are available to buy in towns along the way and I always decanted mine into a Water-To-Go filter bottle.  It doesn't fit a normal bike cage, but it does fit this one.

Due to Islamic extremists, tourism has largely shifted to Morocco from Egypt and especially Tunisia.

A huge number of them take coach, taxi and private group trips from Marrakech to the desert, adding great volumes of traffic to an already busy RN9 across the High Atlas.

This is one road which is rapidly being improved, but at the moment, sections of it are hideously difficult to drive (see above).

I frequently saw a car trying to overtake a truck while it was passing a bus, often heading into a blind mountain bend.  To add to the fun, conditions through the roadworks were akin to driving through a muddy quarry.  I saw one vehicle on its roof and watched another being winched from a ravine.

I was delighted we were driven out of Marrakech to our starting point, a town below the main pass of Tizi n Tchka.  If I were touring and absolutely had to cover this part of the RN9 out of Marrakech, I'd arrange to be driven to the start point we used.  Oh, and I wouldn't start on a busy weekend.

I made this Google Map from my GPS tracks.  The ones provided by KE were fine but huge sections of road have changed (been improved) mainly on the RN9.

The yellow loop is the route of the Atlas Etape Sportive so you can compare it with our larger track.  Our ride went clockwise and, after descending to the most southerly point, we drove back to the previous point and continued the ride west.

Day 1 - Argane Tichka to Ouarzazate via Tizi n Tichka - GPS    64.8ml  +3285ft

Hotel Mogador Gueliz (Gueliz is the area in Marrakech) is on the south west side of the city, handy for a fast getaway and it will store bike boxes.

Ask for a room NOT on the main road or you will not sleep.  Traffic builds steadily until 3am and there are hooting trains coming into the station.  Otherwise it's a decent hotel where French is spoken more than English.  That's true across Morocco.

The breakfast buffet, where everyone handles the bread, is suspect health-wise.  The 6am Buffet Battle against an entire regiment of German tourists, trying to cram down food before their 7am desert coach departure, is highly entertaining so long as you're not in the middle of the carnage.

I've already described some of the road conditions heading toward the Col, which would be utterly vile to cycle.

However, from where we began our ride the improved road was superb.  We climbed easily to the Col du Tichka, dropped into a saddle, then climbed again to a minor col before a long descent.  Sadly, this sweeping descent turned sour as the road surface degenerated into a cross between crazy paving and cobbles.  It was rattlingly unpleasant.  The rain didn't help.  But it was over quickly.

First of many (many, many) tagines for lunch and one of the best, a Berber Tagine of meatballs and baked eggs.  Normally I don't eat meat but faced with a probable alternative of endless omelettes I immediately relented.

The next bit should have been an easy descent, but the traffic was busy and... insane.  Bicycles were of no consequence.  Cars heading in the opposite direction would simply pull out to overtake directly into our path speeding towards us and inevitable collision.  They expected us cyclists avoid them by steering off the road.  One such manoeuvre resulted in one of our group hitting a speed bump, flying over the handles, and suffering some nasty road rash down one side of his body.  He used quite a lot of the first-aid kit.

Ouazazatte is the centre of the film industry, the location for movies as diverse as Lawrence of Arabia and Star Wars.  It's now a major stopping point for tourists on one of several well-driven circuits into the desert.

Consequently we had a big, tourist hotel - Hotel Ouazazate Le Zat.  Warm and comfortable, with another looming Battle of the Buffet.  So we breakfasted after they had departed.

Day 2 - Ouarzazate to Agdz - GPS 45ml  +3599ft
This day was one long, gradual climb.  Gradually the warm kit was stripped off, down to just jersey and shorts.  Now that's what I came here for.

Far too long spent touring the Kasbah (Kasbah = castle, pretty much).  A great guide but out of the sun, whether in shade or indoors, it was very cold until around lunch-time.  Contrast that with the 50C July/August temperature here.  Still, for us it was arm and leg warmers plus a decent jacket every morning.

Still on the previously busy RN9, but far less traffic on Monday, which made cycling much nicer.  Hotel Rose du Sable is a small boutique place with great rooms and decent food.

The heating is in the form of an air-conditioning unit which meant I could wash and dry my jersey and shorts.  The GPS track should take you to the door.

Day 3 - Agdz to Zagora - GPS 60.5ml  +1978ft
I'll remember this as a day of chain-gangs.  Either in larger groups or in sets of three we worked together and whizzed down this valley at a fair clip.  The tarmac was good, the sun was out and it was a great day.

Lunch was always something cooked - usually a type of soup or salad, followed by a tagine or couscous, sometimes with the addition of skewers of chicken.  In fact, that's the sum total of our culinary experience in Morocco.  I thought it would be rich and varied but it all tasted rather plain.  Except the Berber Tagines, everyone's favourite.

A tour of palm trees occupied lunchtime.  A local guide Hassan shinned up a three hundred year old palm to fetch some dates.

The afternoon flashed past in conditions like you see in this video.  Having shot and edited this on my old iPhone 6 I had the idea to start making video blogs about each day which I posted to Facebook.  That means there'll be less writing and more video in the coming days.

Overnight at the Hotel Kasbah Sirocco was probably the best on the trip, with a Hammam (steam room) and reasonably priced massage which I'm told was excellent.

Day 4 - Agdz to Tazenakht - GPS 54.0ml  +3801ft
All aboard the mini-bus for the drive back up to Agdz then a long climb to one pass, a drop past an ugly cobalt mine, then a steeper climb at the end of the day.

This is the point where the riding changed.  We left the popular tourist route to the desert and headed cross country.  The roads were much quieter, the tarmac rougher and draggy (but still vastly improved on previous years I hear), and the towns few and far between.  Few tourists venture this way.  Consequently, the standard of hotels fell somewhat over the next couple of nights due to their being no alternative.

Please bear in mind these videos were shot and edited on an old iPhone 6 each night after cycling.  I've tidied them up a little, but not much.

We stayed in the Hotel Bab Sahara in Tazenakht (there are different spellings of the town name) and I couldn't find it on Trip Advisor, only Facebook.  It's not the Bab Sahara in Ouazazate.  The swimming pool was drained and there was no heating in the rooms, just a pile of old blankets.

I had anticipated this and brought warm running tights, fleece top and a hat to sleep in.  I'm sure I got a couple of bites during the night too.  It was not a problem, just part of the adventure.  There seemed to be little alternative accommodation.

Day 5 - Tazenakht - Aoulouz - GPS 75.9ml  +3206ft
Still in the back of beyond, still well off the tourist trail.  It was the longest day in terms of distance, so we rode as a group and the miles flew past.   

This will forever be remembered as the day I saw goats grazing up a tree.  Seriously.  Watch the video.  It cost me 20 dihram and a Mule Bar to the goat herder to take these shots (so about £3) but worth it.  Agree?

Apparently, the only tourist hotel in town closed due to lack of tourists.  Google suggests other places to stay in the town, but we didn't use them.

We were accommodated at an Auberge, like a large private house, where the people were super friendly and went out of their way to help.  I can't find a name for it anywhere.  Unfortunately, a sudden rain storm messed up their drains and there was no water, warm or otherwise, to shower.  Yet our group seemed more concerned about the wifi (OK I'm guilty).

Day 6 - Aoulouz - Ijjoukak - GPS 68ml  +6124ft 
This was always going to be the hardest day.  A 19 mile warm-up, dropping to the low point of the ride, then a 24 mile climb of over 6000 feet to the second highest point of the ride, the pass called the Tizi n Test.  Only the Tizi n Tickha on Day-1 is higher, and we drove most of the way up that.

It stands comparisons to long climbs I've done in riding La Marmotte in the Alps and especially the Raid Pyrenean (still my favourite week).  However, road conditions were utterly different.  At times it again felt like being back in parts of rural Pakistan, with cars and trucks hurtling past.  Watch the video and you'll get an idea.

Overnight was at the Gite Auberge Tigmmi N'Tmazirt which you can also find on Air B&B.  Another one with no heating and, since we'd just had rain and hailstone, it was chilly.  We met two French-Canadian cycle tourists heading up the pass on titanium bikes and enjoyed chatting about each others experiences.

Day 7 - Ijjoukak - Marrakech Outskirts - GPS 53.7ml  +2745ft
Mornings on this ride were always cold because it took time for the sun to warm the desert air.  Today was colder than normal, partly due to the overnight rain, and partly due to the steep sides of the surrounding mountains which left the road in deep, chilly shade.

We started the day surrounded by high mountains and ended in the Marrakech suburbs, with only one climb of note.  Along the way we visited the utterly authentic Asni market where two of our group risked Hep A, Hep B, Hep C and HIV just to get a shave.  Utterly crazy.

By early evening we were back in the Hotel Mogador Gueliz where I stayed an extra couple of days to explore Marrakech.  There's a video of that here.

I hope this has been helpful to other cyclists thinking of heading to Morocco.  If you have experience of riding in the country, I'd appreciate you sharing it in the comments below.  I'm quite happy for you to correct me if you think I've made some mistakes - no-one has a monopoly on wisdom.

by Simon Willis ( at December 08, 2018 09:57 pm

paddling with a camera
pictures, video, stories, reviews, tips & gear for paddling photography

Do you need a hot tea for your winter paddling?

Perhaps you don’t need a hot tea for winter paddling, but if you make a longer photo session in the middle of your work, it’s a different story. Landscape photography requires standing in one place and waiting for light. Of […]

by Marek at December 08, 2018 09:22 pm

Fotos,videos y relatos de mi navegaciones en kayak de mar


Navegando en kayak con un Point 65 Crunch Rocker por el Garraf una comarca muy chula de barcelona leer mas

December 08, 2018 07:23 pm

December 07, 2018

The Ikkatsu Project
In the Service of the Ocean

On the Other Hand

I’m working on the Annual Report, and can’t help but reflect on the great year this was for the Ikkatsu Project, with active programs in Washington and Alaska continuing on into 2019, as well as gearing up for the State-wide bag ban… more on that real soon.

But then – and I didn’t mean to do this – I thought about the significant ways that 2018 was not a good year for the environment in general, and the oceans in particular. I thought about this article from a few days ago, detailing the destruction that society is willing to accept in order to get more oil. And more. Until it’s all gone.

At least it’s Friday.

by Ken Campbell at December 07, 2018 05:20 pm

Being the Continuing Adventures of a Woman and her Trusty Kayak in New York Harbor, the Hudson River, and Beyond. (with occasional political rants just to keep things lively!)

A Pearl Harbor post for December 7th

I was going to post about the fancy duck of Central Park today, but it is December 7th today and I've decided to re-share one of my Pearl Harbor photo posts instead. 

Photos taken during a visit to my folks in 2007. That turned out to be their last year living in the islands - TQ came along on this one and I'm so glad he had this chance to see where I'm from. 

My dad being retired Navy, we got to go on a Navy tour, which runs in much closer along the shore of Ford Island than the public trips go (this is still a working base). That's how I have the picture of the Utah Memorial, which I wanted to share along with the more familiar Arizona Memorial. Click on any photo for a better view. 
Utah Memorial (on Ford Island)

Ford Island

Arizona Memorial

Inside the memorial

Battleship Row, with the USS Missouri. The concrete platforms to which the ships were moored are marked with the names of the ships that were there that day. Click here to read more about Battleship Row on that day

Closing with a peaceful picture - outrigger practice on Pu'uloa (Hawaiian name of Pearl Harbor). 

by (bonnie) at December 07, 2018 04:44 pm
ute räknas. Ute med kajak räknas minst dubbelt :)

Skistar aktieägarrabatt 2018/2019

Det börjar dra ihop sig till fjälldräll så idag shoppade vi liftkort. Blev, som de senaste åren, Skistar All. Alltså säsongskort som gäller på alla Skistars anläggningar. Nu kommer vi åka det allra mesta i Trysil men det kan vara gott att ta nån sväng i Trysil och man vet aldrig, kan bli nån runda ... Läs mer...

Inlägget Skistar aktieägarrabatt 2018/2019 dök först upp på

by Erik Sjöstedt at December 07, 2018 02:08 pm

Paddle Making (and other canoe stuff)
Functional paddle art and other canoe related ramblings

1794 Mi'kmaq Rennes de Robien Canoe Model

First posted back in 2017 (here), the Museum of Fine Arts of Rennes has a model birchbark canoe with an accompanying paddle dating to at least 1794. The souvenir is constructed in the Mi'kmaq style with its distinctive hump amidships. It was assumed to be collected by Christophe-Paul de Robien (1698-1756), a French ethnographer and historian. After the French Revolution, his personal collection inherited by his descendants was seized by the state and distributed to what became the Museum of Fine Arts of Rennes. During the inventory process, it was inscribed with a date of 1794 although the original construction date is likely older.

Modèle de canot avec rame
Inv 794.1.782
Museum of Fine Arts     RENNES

Accompanying the canoe is a single paddle with a pole grip and a decorated blade. Although faded, it appears that half the blade was painted with a red pigment creating a simple "yin/yang" effect. The canoe and paddle as well as other curiosities collected by Robien are now on display in a special gallery at the museum. One particular visitor has captured the model and paddle in the following photo:

Additional posts on this model are found here and here

by Murat ( at December 07, 2018 07:55 am

December 06, 2018

Being the Continuing Adventures of a Woman and her Trusty Kayak in New York Harbor, the Hudson River, and Beyond. (with occasional political rants just to keep things lively!)

Flushing Meadows Corona Park to Central Park:

"I'll see your fancy duck and raise you a national emblem!"

Photo by TQ

Note: If you are not a New Yorker and/or a follower of celebrity waterfowl news, I'll explain tomorrow. If you can't wait, google "central park fancy duck". 

:D  />

teeny tiny kayak smiley, patent pending

by (bonnie) at December 06, 2018 06:24 pm

Kayaking – René Seindal
Dane living in Venice - photography, history, kayaking, rowing in Venice, Italy

Venice Kayak

Kayaking in Venice is a unique experience. Venice Kayak offers guided kayak tours in the city of Venice and in the lagoon.

The post Venice Kayak appeared first on René Seindal.

by René Seindal at December 06, 2018 04:34 pm

En blogg om padling og annet friluftsliv i (hovedsakelig) Vesterålen

Vinjesjøen i fargeshow

Sist søndag var det aldeles nydelige farger. Jeg var bestemt på å padle, men kom seint i gang om morran. Da jeg hadde bestemt meg for at det måtte bli i Bø, la jeg ut melding på siden til klubben der, i tilfelle noen ville være med. Jeg satte ut rundt når lyset var på det meste, og ville minke. Det var 6–7 grader, men også en del vind, så det var kjølig.

Gaukværøy, hit padlet jeg på denne tiden et år tidligere. Men i dag var det for mye vind til det.

Som vi ser, en del plussgrader, men med den vinden så ble det faktisk ganske kjølig likevel.

Det var så pass med vind at det var mer liv i havet enn det pleier å være når jeg padler her, og jeg holdt meg innenfor det meste av holmer. Jeg ville rett og slett havne litt i hurtigste laget i brottene dersom noe uheldig skulle skje.

Det var ingen krise, for jeg kikket mest på himmelen i alle fall. Etter hvert kom det melding fra Eirik i Bø at han skulle komme etter. Hurra! Jeg hadde utfordret han spesielt, han har nemlig ny kajakk så jeg hadde litt forhåpninger om at det skulle gå an å lure han med, he he.

Da han kom var det blitt så mørkt at kamera hadde gitt fullstendig opp å ta gode bilder, men han kom i hvert fall og dette er bevis. Han trivdes mye bedre i denne Cetusen enn i den han hadde forrige gang, som allerede er solgt, det synes jeg vistes godt. Artig når folk ser sånn ut til å trives i en kajakk, at man har truffet godt med kjøpet. Denne kommer han til å få det mye skøy i, er jeg overbevist om.

Fantastisk flotte farger, men nå begynte det å bli sørgelig lite lys. Men artige bølger når vi padlet litt utover – når vi var to så ble jo det straks mer aktuelt enn det var for meg alene.

Etter hvert tok vi fatt på retur til Vinjesjøen. Underveis tok jeg rulla fint på vrangsiden, men ikke søren om det gikk på godsiden. Det kom nok av vind og bølger, jeg hadde nok kommet fint opp om jeg hadde byttet side – men det var jo godsiden jeg manglet så jeg prøvde heller gjentatte ganger på den. Niks mulig, men desemberrulla var jo i boks på den ene siden så da er jeg i mål for i år. Da trenger jeg ikke rulle før til neste år.

Takk for turen, kjekt med selskap på vinterpadling!

by Miamaria Padlemia ( at December 06, 2018 10:30 am

December 05, 2018
ute räknas. Ute med kajak räknas minst dubbelt :)

Onsdagsmys i solnedgången

Äntligen blev det liten decemberpaddling. Eftersom det såg ut att bli lite klart kring solnegången så paddlade vi då. Alltid extra fint i solnedgångsljuset. Blev en kortis från ÄSSS ut i Skälderviken. Lite små vågor ute i Skälderviken, från gårdagens vind. Hade en tanke på att gå iland för bad men det var minsann lite ... Läs mer...

Inlägget Onsdagsmys i solnedgången dök först upp på

by Erik Sjöstedt at December 05, 2018 09:21 pm


Coaching in Greece for a week: amazing experience!

I'm always happy to coach with other coaches: this is the best way foro me to improve my coaching skills together with my personal, relational and social interaction skills.
It's even better when I also have the chance to go abroad and meet some special people, like George Gazetas, a passionate sea kayaker and a competent coach, owner of Odysea sea kayak center in Greece, and Peter Jones, an experienced and well-know coach based in Anglesey - UK.
Thanks to them I get even more deep into the coaching experience and I've learnt a mass of new things: last week was a very priceless week and I've realized one more time that you never stop learning!
George invited me for the third time to Greece to run a Coastal navigation and Tidal Planning course at his new center based in Palea Fokaia, just 60 km South of Athens, and a Moderate Water Sea Kayak Leader training for five incredibly determined students, some of them also involved as mock students in the following assessment.
For the first time in Greece, in fact, George organized a MW Leader assessment, directed by Peter Jones, with me as second assessor and George himself as observer. Unfortunately none of the five candidates passed the assessment but I'm pretty sure that they all will come back next time with much more confidence and experience. By my side, it has been interesting to travel through the Provider Process again (both for CNTP and MW Leader award) and support George the same way I was supported by other coaches... This is a sort of emotional and constructive approch to pass your knowledge and expertise to others, and at the same time to receive back something really special: a peculiar mix of ideas, suggestions, top handy tips, discussions, different viewpoints & insights, an incredibly exchange of fieldwork patiently built in order to get better yourself, step by step, as coach and human being as well...
George and Peter were the perfect partners for this amazing coaching adventure in Greece!

The first group of enthusiastic paddler down the Poseidon Temple at Cape Sounion... 
Dimitris and Xaris practising a spectacular and efficient roll & assisted rescue...
Moving water at Vouliagmeni lake close to the Corinth canal...
Assisted an unconscious paddler going back into his kayak...
In-line double-towing of a rafted kayaks...
Second day around Sounion Cape exploring the rocky coast-line...
Rock landing and launching under the Poseidon temple with a big audience from the top of the cliffs!
Many water activities around the temple dedicated to the god of the sea... 
One of the various de-briefing we have had during the three days' training
George was surely the happiest paddler of the group!
The students working hard to use the diamonds' informations to plan a daily trip...
The best place ever to organize the final de-briefing on the last training day!
New adventure is starting: the first MW Sea Kayak Leader assessment in Greece!
Perfect conditions: rough waters and windy days provide us a good remit...
Variety of rocky coast-line where to practise leadership skills...
How many people are involved in an assisted rescue of a capsized paddler?!
Is that a towing of an Easter egg?
One of the briefing moments during the leadership sessions...
Peter and George (and myself too!) organizing the final assessment de-briefing...
Two more jolly days spent in Greece to visit the amazing, rich and windy inland

Sono sempre molto contenta di insegnare insieme ad altri insegnanti: credo sia la maniera migliore per migliorare le mie competenze didattiche, oltre alle mie capacità di approfondire le relazione personale e di sviluppare le interazione sociali.
E' ancora più stimolante quando ho l'occasione di andare all'estero e di incontrare alcune persone speciali, come George Gazetas, un kayaker appassionato ed un insegnante preparato, titolare della scuola di kayak greca Odysea, e Peter Jones, uno dei più esperti e conosciuti insegnanti originario di Anglesey, la Mecca del kayak da mare a livello mondiale.
Grazie a loro mi sono addentrata ancor più in profondità nei meandri dell'insegnamento del kayak da mare e ho imparato un'infinità di cose interessanti: la scorsa settimana è stata ineguagliabile e ho capito una volta di più che ogni giorno è buone per imparare qualcosa di nuovo!
George mi ha invitata per la terza volta a tenere in Grecia sia un corso di navigazione costiera presso il suo nuovo centro di kayak a Palea Fokaia, appena 60 km a sud di Atene, che un corso per diventare capo gruppo secondo gli standard della British Canoeing, quel Moderate Water Sea kayak Leader training un tempo denominato "4 stelle": i cinque allievi coinvolti si sono dimostrati talmente determinati da voler prendere parte come cavie anche al successivo esame.
George ha infatti organizzato per la prima volta in Grecia anche un esame di MW Leader, diretto da Peter Jones, assistito da me come secondo esaminatore, e seguito dallo stesso George come osservatore nel suo percorso per diventare a sua volta provider. Sfortunatamente nessuno dei cinque candidati ha superato l'esame finale ma sono sicura che tutti si presenteranno al prossimo appuntamento con molta più esperienza e sicurezza.
Dal mio punto di vista, inoltre, il corso e l'esame hanno rappresentato anche uno stimolante "ripasso" del percorso per diventare provider ed è stato molto bello poter aiutare George nello stesso modo in cui io sono stata aiutata da altri insegnanti quando seguivo lo stesso tirocinio (sia per il CNTP che per il MW Leader)... E' una sorta di passaggio del testimone, una maniera intelligente di trasferire ad altri le tue conoscenze e allo stesso tempo un modo intrigante di ricevere qualcosa di speciale come contropartita: un peculiare intreccio di idee, suggerimenti, aiuti e stratagemmi, confronti, diverse prospettive e punti di vista, un'incredibile scambio di esperienze pratiche di insegnamento (e non solo!) creato con l'intento precipuo di continuare sempre a migliorare se stessi, passo dopo passo, come insegnanti e come persone...
George e Peter sono stati i colleghi (di più: alleati, sostenitori, amici!) perfetti per questa fantastica esperienza di corsi ed esami in Grecia!

by Tatiana Cappucci ( at December 05, 2018 07:36 pm

The Ikkatsu Project
In the Service of the Ocean

Playing Catch-Up

You know that thing that happens when you turn the garden hose on full blast and it starts writhing around on the lawn, occasionally rising up and spewing water out in a huge arc before coming back down and spraying all over your shorts? That’s the figurative equivalent of the Ikkatsu Project at the moment, except that instead of one hose, there are at least a half-dozen. Here’s a partial list – in no particular order – of what’s going on as this year winds down and the next one begins:

Giving Tuesday – This 2018 fundraising effort went well, and thanks to the generosity of all who contributed, planning for next year’s programs is well underway. Funding is not complete and there are still needs that have not been met, but the response was encouraging and, quite honestly, downright empowering. (If you’d like to contribute, just click on the “Donate” button on the Home Page. Thanks!)

Film Production – This is the focus of activity at the moment, not just securing the funds to get the film done, but crafting the message and the accompanying images in a way that will inform as well as entertain. “Decision” is scheduled for a May release and a celebration is anticipated. Stay tuned.

Tacoma Shoreline Survey 2.0 – The 2018 TSS was a great example of people and organizations working together to do something awesome. The entire city shoreline was surveyed for debris, observations on what and how much is out there were recorded and almost 700 pounds of trash was collected and removed by 78 volunteers. That’s a good day. The next one, on the calendar for April 27, 2019, figures to be even better.

South Kuiu Cleanup – After an enlightening and successful trip to southeast Alaska last July, we’re going back in 2019. The focus will be on completing cleanup on several beaches we hit this year, as well as on debris deposition studies and mapping types and quantities of flotsam that come ashore over a range of remote Alaskan beaches. Can’t wait.

Seventy48 – Yes, it’s back on again for 2019 and Team Basura is once again taking to the waters of Puget Sound in a long-distance paddle race to raise awareness about marine plastics. Using a real sea kayak this year instead of the literal pile of trash from 2018 and setting up to tell some great new stories, with events planned before, during and after the race.

Fresh Water Sampling – This is the 4th year of sampling for microplastics with Lakeridge Middle School students and 2019 is going to see an expansion of that program to include testing on the Carbon River and the White River, as well as new sites on the Puyallup. In terms of getting the plastics issue home to where students live, this program absolutely brings it. More to come as the year develops.

So, that’s a start. There’s more. There always is.


by Ken Campbell at December 05, 2018 05:15 pm

December 04, 2018


Adventspaddling 2018

Nya tider och nya traditioner.

Den här adventspaddlingen testade vi det lilla pensionatet Gullkråkan i Hällaryds skärgård. Pensionatet ligger på ön Joggesö halvägs ut mot Tärnö.

Vi var ett litet tappert gäng på sju som hade bokat in oss på lördagen med middag och övernattning.  Tanken var att tälta på Östra Bokö på fredagen, ha 5-6 minusgrader, ett stilla snöfall på eftermiddagen, gnistrande stjärnhimmel på kvällen. Givetvis en mysig brasa. Nu blev det 10-15 sekundmeter sydlig vind och ösregn. Tja… ni fattar…  Det blev alltså direktpaddling till Joggesö på lördag em. 

Jesper, Challan, Marja, Leif, Katarina, Helene och jag på väg mot Gullkråkan.  Challan gillar att komma fram! 🙂 Gullkråkans lilla pensionat håller till i den här fina kåken. Huset byggdes 2012 och man har använt en del material från det gamla kåken som fanns där tidigare.
Bord – duka dig!
Jodå – Katarina lyckades kravla sig ner på golvet – utan hjälp. 🙂
Och just precis DÄR halkade gänget in på att lösa ett riktigt allvarligt I-landsproblem. Tack och lov inte det enda ämnet på kvällens agenda! 🙂 
Glad och nöjd.

Katarina utanför sitt krypin.
Inredningen på Gullkråkan är fylld av små klurigheter. Den här lilla luckan sitter på väggen i en av stugorna.  Genom röret kikar man in i en fågelholk som hänger på husets utsida. Med rätt timing kan man följa de små fågelungarna växa.
Gullkråkans värdinna samlar drivved och snickrar små piffiga skåp. På väggen hänger också spant i svartek från ett vrak utanför ön.
Obligatorisk ö-promenad på söndagen.
Gänget som gjorde’t! Tack för en himla trevlig helg! 🙂

by Christian Cronberg at December 04, 2018 09:07 pm

Björn Thomasson Design
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Frej – Chen Lichao

Frej – Chen Lichao

En Frej i Kina – mycket välbyggd av Chen Lichau i Fuzhou (ungefär mitt emellan Shanghai and Hongkong).

"Finally my Frej project was done! Almost 2 years!

I made her debut on water in a paddling marathon about 63km around the Nan Tai Island in Fuzhou, China in Dec 1, 2018.

I'm pretty satisfied with this build. In my opinion, It's not a efficient kayak for long touring. But It is fast enough... and easy to maneuver and easy to turn 90 degrees using your paddle. When skeg down, it tracks very well. Now I had trouble slipping my lower body into this ocean cockpit, haha. I need more exercises to get accustomed to the type of cockpit. The back deck is low. And without a backrest, I think it is a benefit when rolling. In the marathon, I jam the foam block of the lifejacket into between my lower back and back of cockpit rim so I feel comfortable in my lumbar. I'm planing to add a detachable backrest to it in case for a long trip.

It's not my first attemp in building kayak. Actually I had lots of experiences from previous builds. So this time I decided to make it different. I prototype many parts of the kayak, including seat, hatch cover, hatch gasket, cockpit rim and made moulds for them, yes, they were one-off mold... I used a lot of carbon in final product and I think that was cool. Oh, I mold my own buttom to make the seat mold, haha. In order to make it look awesome, I made a spray booth in my homeshop. I paint it automotive polyurethane acrylic paint, I looks gorgeous but in her debut, she got lots of scratch. Luckily it's not made out of steel."

Frej – Chen Lichao

Frej – Chen Lichao

Frej – Chen Lichao

Frej – Chen Lichao

by Björn Thomasson at December 04, 2018 09:31 am

Piragüismo San Fernando


Paz Bey García, estrena en forma de oro el medallero del Club PIRAGÜISMO SAN FERNANDO.
Ha sido el pasado sábado día 1 de diciembre de 2018 en el CEAR de la Cartuja de Sevilla. En el Campeonato de Andalucía de Larga Distancia. Primera prueba oficial de la federación Andaluza de Piragüismo. 

Un total de 7 palistas participaron por el club. Todos ellos llegando a terminar la carrera obteniendo diversos puestos:
El primero en participar fue Juan Cardoso Macias en veteranos de 45-49 que hizo un tiempo de 56:38 en 9000m quedando en el puesto 19. 

Paz Bey Garcia hizo un tiempo de 1:03:10 en 9000m participando en veteranas 60-64 entrando en primera posición que partieron en linea de meta....

.... juntamente con Lola Lado Gomez que entro en 8ª posición con un tiempo de 1:06:56 en una distancia de 9000m en la categoría veteranas de 45-49.

El seguidamente Adolfo Rodriguez Guerrero en juveniles hizo un tiempo de 1:08:44 en 9000 m. quedando en el puesto 40.
Ya por la tarde, Maria Rodriguez Guerrero en Infantiles Neofitos (primera participacion federada durnte la temporada) finalizo con un tiempo de 25:35 en la distancia de 3000m quedando en 6ª posición 

Luego Sukeina Archilla Sarr también termino  6ª en Infantiles también Neofitos con un tiempo de 6:05:34 en una distancia de 750m

Sukeina recogiendo su merecida medalla de participación (primera a la derecha)
El ultimo en participar y cerrando el campeonato  fue Sidy Archilla Sarr en pre-benjamines con un tiempo de 7: 28:97 quedando el 6º puesto haciendo un recorrido de 750m

Sidy en podium de participación (primero a la derecha)

En definitiva primera experiencia en un campeonato federado donde hay mucho que mejorar pues estamos a mucha distancia todavía del nivel tan alto que existe en piragüismo.


Mas fotos:

by Andres Barba ( at December 04, 2018 06:56 am

December 03, 2018

Mike Jackson's Paddling Journal
A journal of my sea kayak trips.

December 3rd - Cadboro Bay (#69)

I took the surf ski out for a quick afternoon paddle. There was a brisk northerly wind, but the sky was clear and the visibility was great. I could see Mt Baker as well as Mt Rainier (the latter was spectacular at sunset!). I ran into several harbour seals as well as a typical assortment of a dozen birds: .
click to enlarge
7 km, YTD 548 km

by Mike J ( at December 03, 2018 06:29 pm

Extreme Sea Kayaking Adventures
Exploring the Pacific Ocean Coast of California and Oregon

Krazy Kayakers – A Komedy of Errors on the High Seas

Editor’s note: Every year about this time we like to post something light-hearted in honor of the holidays and to brighten the darkness of year’s end. This article was written by Hilary Atherton, a friend of the Rangers and a very funny writer. It’s a madcap tale of three women and their misadventures on the […]

by Nancy Soares at December 03, 2018 07:45 am

Paddling Otaku
Otaku is defined as ' a Japanese term used to refer to people with obsessive interests'

Holiday Sales on all Books.

Getting ready for the holiday season? With that in mind I decided to run a sale for the month of December on all the books I have written. 

At the iBook store, Enlightened Kayaking is now $3.99 (originally $5.99) and GO! Planning weekend trips to month long adventures is $7.99 (originally $10.99) Finally, Forward, the short book that just focuses on the forward kayak stroke is Free. All of these books are digital only and can be read on the iPad, iPhone or your Mac. 

At Amazon, GO! is also $7.99 and the Paperback version is $12.99 (originally $15.99). 

This sale is going to run through the month of December. January first they will go back to full price. On either platform you can send these books as a gift in either digital form or paperback. 

I like the thought of giving the gift of experiences for Christmas, and these books can help give people the skills to create their own experiences. 

If you have already purchased one of my books, thanks for supporting an independent author, and if you enjoyed it, please give the book a review wherever you bought it. If you didn't enjoy it, please send me some feedback. The joy of being independent and publishing digitally, is that I can make changes. 

by paddlingOTAKU ( at December 03, 2018 06:00 am

December 02, 2018

Mountain and Sea Scotland
Hillwalking and Sea Kayaking in Scotland

An autumnal gem

On a crisp and sunny mid November day we drove a short distance to the pretty village of Monymusk for a walk.  Monymusk has an interesting history, the estate has been owned by the Grant family since 1712 and many of the cottages in the village square are estate properties.

Sir Archibald Grant inherited the estate in 1719 and set about transforming the agricultural land surrounding the House of Monymusk.  When the Grants took ownership the land was boggy, poorly drained, had little in the way of crop or stock capacity and was almost bare of trees.

Archie Grant had a colourful life.  He was a speculator, sometime mine owner and was expelled from the House of Commons after a financial scandal.  However, he proved to be one of the great agricultural "improver" lairds.  He ordered the clearing of ground with stones being used to make field enclosures, introduced crop rotation to the estate including the use of clovers and rye grasses to condition the soil, he planted millions of trees on the estate and was one of the early adopters of growing turnips - a humble crop today but a game changer in cattle rearing practice at the time.  Using turnips which could stay in the drill until winter, cattle could be fed through the year rather than having to be sold.  All these improvements meant a change to the old subsistence farming methods which had existed in Aberdeenshire, and many folk had to move but this was not a clearance in the sense of evicting people to make way for sheep or sporting estates.  His legacy and that of his descendants is a rich mixture of productive agricultural ground, woodland and the origins of the village of Monymusk we see today.

The most important building in Monymusk isn't the estate "big house" but the church.  A stone church has stood here since the 12th century, and it's believed that this replaced an even older Celtic church.  The origin tale concerning the building of the church records that the future King Malcolm III prayed here on his way to a battle with Macbeth near Lumphanan in 1057.  He stated that if he was successful he would build a church to replace the already old building in Monymusk. Malcolm defeated Macbeth's army, captured and summarily executed him on the battlefield, then honoured his promise to build a church.

The church seems very large for a small rural community but was originally built to serve a nearby priory.  The tower was originally somewhat higher than the present one but has been lowered twice, firstly to counteract an unsound wall.  A spire was added which in turn became unsound so the whole tower was lowered further.

The church contains an important Pictish symbol stone and two 6th century grave slabs.  Despite living just a few miles away, we've yet to see these - something to rectify!

Our walk took us out of the village and up through a wood containing some huge Douglas Firs, perhaps planted by Archibald Grant.  The path through the wood climbs gently up to Clyan's Dam.....

.......which proved to be a bit of an autumnal gem.  A path goes over the earth dam and around the small lake, which was probably a mill pond.  The last of the autumnal colours were reflected beautifully in the still water, it's a peaceful spot and several benches offer the chance to sit and enjoy the setting.

At the dam a small burn emerges out to wind down through the wood to the River Don below, rushing through mounds of beech leaves had been piled up by the wind.  We headed the same way, back down through the wood and along the minor road to reach a track which heads back towards Monymusk alongside the River Don.

As from so many places in Aberdeenshire, the distinctive shape of Bennachie's Mither Tap is prominent above the farmland and woods.

In mid November when most of the glory of autumn is finished, the Larch trees have their moment.  This image doesn't do justice to the intense yellow and gold strips interspersing the dark greens of  the spruces in Bennachie forest.  Add in a blue sky and you have another autumnal gem.

In the three weeks since the images in this post were taken a series of autumnal gales, sluicing rain and a little snow have stripped the trees of their remaining foliage.  The colours diminished, it's more about form now.

We soon arrived back at Monymusk but took a short diversion to get a view of the House of Monymusk.  Originally built by the Forbes family and developed by the Grants, it's one of the grander examples of a Scottish estate "big house" and is harled in the pink shade often used in the castles and estates of Aberdeenshire.

Our walk around Monymusk had lasted less than two hours, but on a lovely crisp day had been something of an autumnal gem!

by Ian Johnston ( at December 02, 2018 07:57 pm

The Ikkatsu Project
In the Service of the Ocean

The Next Level

Tacoma adopted a “Bring Your Own Bag” ordinance a couple years ago, keeping approximately 90 million single-use bags out of the local retail system. If anyone knows of any great hardship this has caused, any decline in quality-of-life for Tacoma residents, please get in touch. Because it took more than four years of concerted effort from a lot of different people and organizations to make it happen, and throughout the process, we heard constant grousing from the naysayers, shrill jerimiads about how this un-American tack was going to adversely affect the community. If enacted, it would cost any number of jobs and after all, plastic bags are nothing short of a basic human right anyway, deserving of a constitutional amendment, possibly.

So… it turned out that was all bullshit. It seems we’ve moved past plastic bags locally and the doom talk of the process is over. Well, not over, exactly. Actually, you should get ready to hear it all over again. Except it will be louder, more misleading and less civil. Brace yourself.

This past week, at a news conference at the Seattle Aquarium, plans were announced to take the bag initiative state-wide. There are already upwards of twenty communities in Washington that have similar policies in place; this move would standardize the entire state, in terms of single-use plastic bags. Legislation is planned to be introduced by State Senator Kevin Ranker and Representative Strom Peterson that would put in place a program similar to the ones that already exist.

There’s a lot of support. But get ready for some well-funded opposition, financed by fossil fuel, the American Chemistry Council and a supporting cast of the usual hired guns. The idea of eliminating plastic bags is seen by some as a first step toward getting rid of other kinds of single-use plastic items, and to give an inch would signal weakness, and that if they were lose this battle, they might be setting themselves up to lose the next one. Fossil fuel companies and plastic manufacturers are worried about more than just bags.

And they should be.

by Ken Campbell at December 02, 2018 04:15 pm

En blogg om padling og annet friluftsliv i (hovedsakelig) Vesterålen

Hellfjorden - høsttur med klubben

Høsttur med klubben i oktober, med eller uten overnatting. Det ble i hvert fall skikkelig høstvær og fabelaktige lysshow underveis. Her et bilde fra returen.

Det var valgfritt med overnatting på Guvåghytta eller ikke, men ingen gadd dra allerede fredag. Så her møtes vi på selve Guvåg hele gjengen, for å ta turen innover Hellfjorden. (Kart kommer lenger ned i innlegget.)
Vedkommende som eier den nærmeste kajakken har her kjørt i møte med maten sin, som kommer med i annen bil. Maten lå nemlig igjen hjemme – og siden det var et samarbeidsprosjekt var det plutselig to stykker som manglet maten… Nuvel, vi skal ikke gni det mer inn enn som så, det ble jo en fin tur.

Vi ble faktisk en liten gjeng på tur i dag.  Eirik, Alexia, Leif Hermann og Berit i tillegg til meg, underveis dukket det opp enda en kar til – per motor faktisk. Her har vi akkurat begynt å padle innover Hellfjorden. Her er det ingen veier, så man har den som regel ganske for seg selv, det er også noen holmer å snirkle imellom innover. En vakker fjord, særlig i høstskrud synes jeg.

Vi fikk særdeles vekslende vær, som jo hører høsten til. Men vind ble vi høvelig skånet for, det var mest små byger med nedbør som traff oss et par ganger. Det tåler vi fint når vi er godt kledd – og når sola kommer fram som her, så er jo nedbøren allerede (nesten i hvert fall) glemt.

Seriøst fint! Vi er for øvrig på jakt etter en 10 på skjæret-post innerst i fjorden. Her har vi Pikstauren som troner høyest, med Bornan til venstre.

Nå nærmer vi oss posten, snart blir det pause inne i fjorden. Det må til på dagstur.

Det var ganske stor flo, så vi kom oss et lite stykke oppover elva, men sjøen hadde såvidt begynt å falle så vi kom oss ikke riktig så langt som jeg hadde håpet. Her var det bare å snu.

Baugene peker nå nedover og utover igjen – på tide å jakte på en pauseplass.

Ikke den aller beste ilandstigningsplassen, men her var det le for det skitsure lille vinddraget, så vi gikk i land her likevel. Motorbåt til høyre, var en kar Alexia hadde med seg. Han fant oss etter hvert.

Ups, en eling – med ekte hagl. Da hadde vi hatt det også, og det var vel rimelig jackpot.

Her er trackinga fra turen.

Leif og Berit holdt varmen i Jervenduken de også. Humøret på topp, tross litt bygevær. Vi har jo klær.

Etter påfyll av mat og varme drikker tok vi fatt på returen igjen. Også nå hadde vi god tid og tok oss tid til litt utforsking – noen øvet også på litt teknikk.

Skyene ble stadig mer dekorative lenger fram.

Rett og slett vakkert! Det er nesten så man må slippe åra, bare ligge her og se.

Guvåghytta er jo også en 10 på skjæret-post, så vi måtte innom der for de som ikke hadde samlet den ennå. Planen var å dra hit etterpå, noen til fots og noen per kajakk, for overnatting til dagen etter og mer padling.

Utsikt fra hytta, mot Hadseløya.

Videre til Guvåg. Alexia tok bilen og føttene fatt til hytta, mens Leif og Berit dro hjem, Eirik og jeg padlet tilbake til hytta. Men der var det så mye haloi og folk at vi padlet i retur og dro hjem vi også. Vi bor så nært at vi kan heller dra tilbake en gang det er mindre folk og roligere der.

Knall tur! Takk for turen, folkens!

by Miamaria Padlemia ( at December 02, 2018 10:37 am
ute räknas. Ute med kajak räknas minst dubbelt :)

Utan filter endast på plats

En del taggar sina bilder med #nofilter,  verkar vara i någon typ av försök att få ögonblicket och stunden att vara lite finare eller bättre eller i alla fall mer ”original” än med filter 🙂 Det är som med mycket annat vi håller på med, lite gulligt 😉 Förr när kamerorna var analoga var det ... Läs mer...

Inlägget Utan filter endast på plats dök först upp på

by Erik Sjöstedt at December 02, 2018 08:04 am

December 01, 2018

Essex Explorations
Our membership is small…but that’s by design. Each of our explorers is a recognized leader in their respective field and brings a unique set of skills to the group. Whether a certified instructor, commercial guide, or in the case of our latest member, a professional photographer, each is passionate about explorations, pushing their boundaries, and then sharing that experience with others.

Driving Hurricane Ridge

Okay, this might be a slight exaggeration when I compare the Obstruction Point drive to Bolivia’s death road, but not by much. Or at least, not in some sections where you have a drop of hundreds of feet with no room to pass an oncoming car. Just ask my passengers!

The post Driving Hurricane Ridge appeared first on Essex Media & Explorations.

by Steve Weileman at December 01, 2018 09:20 pm

Mike Jackson's Paddling Journal
A journal of my sea kayak trips.

December 1st - cadboro Bay (#69)

I led a SISKA "President's paddle" this morning before the club Christmas party. Eleven of us ventured out on the first of December and faced very gentle conditions for this time of year. Winds were less than 10 knots from the north and we made our way out and around Jemmy Jones Island. Idid not see as many birds out as yesterday ( but we had nice views of buffleheads, hooded mergansers and black turnstones.
click to enlarge
6km, YTD 541 km

by Mike J ( at December 01, 2018 03:57 pm
Wild swimming, cycling, sea kayaking, swimming and life in the Scottish Highlands

November Challenge #2: More Charity Work

Last year I became one of the Trustees of a newly created charity, Highland Openwater Swim.

It's aim is to run small, friendly and challenging wild swimming events that are affordable to everyone while raising money for a nominated charity.

I had been taking photos or swimming at most of the 2016 and 2017 events and I live near two of the other trustees.  We're very much and Ardnamurchan based group.

However, in 2018 we were late in publishing our swims because we were waiting for our charitable status to be approved.  Consequently I was booked for filming work on almost every weekend that a swim was subsequently planned.  I was disappointed not to be at the Falls of Lora swim Saturday just gone.

A few weeks ago I sat down the two other Trustees and worked out which swims we wanted to offer and in what order.  I feel the order is important, because we should be offering a ladder, a series of progressively harder challenges, so people can grow in confidence with the swims they undertake.

Then I pick weekends which are closest to Neap Tides when smaller volumes of water are moving.  At neaps the tidal streams are almost always less powerful so slower swimmers are less affected.

When there are two possible weekends in a month, I go for the one with the best slack water.  Our proposed Corran Narrows swim in January 2019 is a perfect example.  Two Sundays. the 13th and the 20th, are each 3 days off neaps.  The relevant slack water at Corran is 10:10 and 11:20, which are both good times of day around which to base a swim.  However, the 11:20 slack comes before the flood i.e. the water will be pushing north through the narrows, so slower swimmers would be carried towards the Corran Ferry - not good.  Slack water on the 13th is better because it comes before an ebb, so slower swimmers are carried away from the ferry.

It's not confirmed, but I suspect we'll pick 13th January for our first swim.  I've done calculations for ten swims in 2019 all of which will be coming to the website in due course.

by Simon Willis ( at December 01, 2018 10:01 am

Paddling Otaku
Otaku is defined as ' a Japanese term used to refer to people with obsessive interests'

The Adventure Otaku Stocking Stuffer Guide 2018

Part two of the Adventure Otaku Christmas is the stocking stuffer list. Once again, these are all Items I use. They make my outdoor life better, safer and more fun. Here is hoping they will have the same effect on your loved ones. 

Snow Peak Gigapower Torch $57.95 - I bought this after years of wanting it. It takes a lot for me to buy something I don’t really need, but this thing gets used all the time. I use it to start campfires mostly, which it does quickly and easily, but I have also used it to melt cheese over a bowl of soup. Talk about versatile, and it uses the same fuel I am already carrying for my stove. A little pricey for what it is, but it is beautifully made. 

Big Agnes Ultra Pump Sack -  $34.95 Blowing up an air pad isn’t too bad, but this is just so much better. Essentially a large dry bag with a connector on the bottom that mates to Big Agnes sleeping pads, depending on which pad you are using it will take about two full pump sacks to fill your pad. When not being used as a pump it is a waterproof bag for clothes our whatever you need to carry and keep dry. 

The UV and insect Shield buff - $20ish. The first thing I pack when I am teaching. Whether it is summer or winter. Versatile, lightweight, and inexpensive. It is the perfect accessory. In the summer it is sun and bug protection. In the winter it is warmth. Can’t beat it. 

Sawyer Permethrin - $14-$20  Because I teach in the outdoors, I try to not use too many chemicals on my skin. That is why I usually use permethrin on my clothing instead of bug spray on my skin (or sunscreen for that matter!) Spray your clothes, let it dry and it keeps bugs at bay for 6 weeks or 6 washings. I was skeptical at first, but once you realize others in your group are shooing mosquitoes while you are sitting comfortably you will realize how well it works too.

MSR Mug Mate Coffee and Tea Filter - $16.95 Super simple, super easy, super light way to make great coffee.

Fox 40 Whistle - $6.00 Everyone should have a fox 40 whistle. Ridiculously loud, inexpensive, and the ultimate piece of safety gear. People don't like buying safety gear, so buy it for them. 

Warm Socks - $14 to $40 Whether your choice is smart wool, Darn tough, or farm to feet, a high quality pair of wool socks cannot be beat. Nothing makes for a better stocking stuffer than awesome, warm, cozy, socks. Whether you are wearing them around the house, or inside a sleeping bag after a long day of paddling. Everyone loves warm socks. 

These last three items combine to make a great gift, you could even add the Jetboil Mighty Mo from the previous list, and make it a super Christmas for someone. 

Hot Chocolate Mix -. $14.00 A great thing to have in the backcountry on a cold day. Here is a great recipe you can make yourself, and prepackage as a gift for someone. If You want to buy it pre-made I have tried tons of brands and my favorite is Godiva Dark chocolate hot cocoa. Paired with the Jetboil Mighty Mo, and a vessel for heating water and this is the ultimate cold weather kit for a hot drink. 

Hydro Flask Vacuum Insulated Coffee Cup $24.95 - keeps coffee hot or cold for a long time, and most importantly seals tight when not in use. Love it, and it fits in a cup holder. And yes, it replaced my Yeti. This is better. 

The GSI Halulite Kettle - $24.95 And here is your vessel for heating water. It packs small enough to carry on a day hike, but big enough to carry a Stove and a canister of fuel. 

Here is your bonus gift. Available via the link on the right side of this list is GO! which is available to give as a gift on either amazon for kindle, or paperback. Or on the iBookstore for iPad and Mac. On sale for $7.99 from December first through New Years Eve. Get your friends or family members the gift of the written word, and the skills to plan their own adventures. 

Happy Holidays Everyone. 

by paddlingOTAKU ( at December 01, 2018 08:00 am

November 30, 2018

Being the Continuing Adventures of a Woman and her Trusty Kayak in New York Harbor, the Hudson River, and Beyond. (with occasional political rants just to keep things lively!)

Strand Book Binge and Event Review

So just copying a FB post-event blither here to Poor Neglected Blog - little bit off from my usual blog topics but hey, it's my blog and I'll write about a cool bookstore event if I want to! I enjoyed it so much, I went home and decided I had to write stuff down before the buzz wore off, and for some reason started in on Facebook; I think I finally posted a bit before 1 am. If I'd actually planned to write that long it probably would've been here in the first place - think it's worth sharing here, at any rate.

 The Strand Bookstore is my current favorite local independent bookstore these days, ever since the slightly closer Shakespeare & Co at NYU closed. Between working at Scholastic and living in a building that's got enough dead-tree-edition readers that the bookshelves in the laundry room is always worth a look, I get an awful lot of books for free, but every now and then when there's a specific book I want, I'm off to the Strand. I've been there a little more regularly than usual recently and just thought to follow them on Facebook a couple of weeks ago. A co-worker recently "liked" a "Let's Talk YA" event they were having, and for once the FB algorithm worked just right in showing that to me.

I was able to make it, I absolutely loved it, I'm so glad I went, and my only regret is that I didn't find out about it sooner so I could have let more of my YA fan friends know about it. 

 David Levithan's name as the moderator was what first caught my attention, as he's one of our editorial directors at Scholastic and also a great writer himself.  Turns out that this panel was something that David had originally suggested to The Strand without even really knowing which authors he could get, but this ended up being a really excellent group of folks to have sitting down and talking author stuff with each other and the audience.

Three of the authors were familiar (I'd loved Kheryn Callender's younger grade book Hurricane Child, I'd read and also thoroughly enjoyed Katrina Van Dam's Come November -- I don't think I can remember ever being quite as pissed off at a fictional parent as that book made me! -- , and an ARC of Eliot Schrefer's Orphaned, the fourth in his great ape series, is sitting on my desk at work waiting its turn as commute reading) but the other three were new to me.

It was held in the Rare Books Room, which was fun in itself, although a little dangerous. I'd never been in there before and I swear that if they'd had cocktails there to lower the inhibitions, I would've been going home with an absolutely charming (but rather expensive) little book by Ruth Kraus and Maurice Sendak, Open House for Butterflies. Fortunately cocktails and rare books are not a good combination so I was able to put the book down.

The panel was a three-stage affair - first David introduced all of the authors, the 3 already mentioned plus Jay Coles (Tyler Johnson Was Here), Sara Farizan (Here to Stay), and Alex Kahler (Runebreaker). Each author read one page (and one page only, even if it broke a sentence) from their book; Sara sang that "Let's start at the very beginning" bit from The Sound of Music and then started at Page 1, 2 of the authors had each other pick a number at random, and the others just read something that they liked.

2nd part was David asking some questions touching on things like the way each author handled their protagonists' relationships with their parents (that was really intriguing as most of the authors were pretty young and some had drawn in a very direct way on their relationships with their own parents, so it ended up being a kind of personal question that they answered with great honesty and love), and specific approaches they used for writing for a young audience. One interesting point that came up there was that as the YA genre has grown, it's reaching for a wider audience, it started out aimed at teens but the stuff that's coming out now may feature youthful characters but is good enough storytelling to appeal to grownups, too. I can certainly vouch for that, one of my favorite perks of working for Scholastic is access to a ton of free books. I don't necessarily find everything we print for YA interesting, but I've read and really enjoyed an awful lot of the stories that are available on the giveaway shelf. So much more than when I was a kid!

3rd part was the audience's turn to ask questions, and some good questions were asked. I even got over my phobia about standing up and speaking in front of people to ask the final question of the evening - somebody else had asked about authors that influenced the writers who were there tonight, and I followed that up with a question about people in their lives who'd given them the earliest confidence in their own writing abilities and sense that this was maybe something they could do "for real". Seemed like a nice question with which to wrap up the evening, and as someone who's got a creative bent, there's this blog and then I love taking pictures and drawing and painting and stuff like that (enough for the "doodles" label to exist); but never even considered taking it beyond a hobby, I'm always a bit awed by people who actually take similar leanings and grow up to do something real with 'em, and thought it would be fun to hear about who'd steered them that way early on. The stories that question elicited were so much fun, with some very humorous twists to some of them - I guess asking a bunch of storytellers to tell stories about people who helped them become storytellers was not a bad idea at all!

Came away from tonight with 6 new books I really want to read now (the 7th, as I mentioned, I'd already read). They had them all for sale there and I settled on David's Someday (got him to sign it!) and Kheryn Callender's This Is Kind of an Epic Love Story - at one point David had asked a question about dedication, and Kheryn mentioned hers, which finishes "And finally, I'm lucky for all the queer people of color who exist in the world, who inspire me and make me feel a little less alone. We're beautiful, we're magical, and we deserve epic love stories". This made me think of some friends of mine who fit that perfectly, and between that and how much I enjoyed Hurricane Child, I found myself wanting to start with that one. It was a tough call deciding what to get, though. The rest I'll definitely be hunting down around the office or library, because they all sound great!

Got those 2 and then as I was leaving I remembered I've been meaning to read Sebago friend Roger D. Hodge's family history, Texas Blood, pretty much since it came out. You get to the Rare Book Room through a separate entrance, so I left there and walked into the main shop to ask after Roger's book, and there's Michelle Obama smiling irresistably from a display table right in the front of the store.

Subway reading is covered for a while!

by (bonnie) at November 30, 2018 11:30 pm

Mike Jackson's Paddling Journal
A journal of my sea kayak trips.

November 30th - Discovery and Chatham islands (#67

I went for a late morning/luchtime paddle with Dan around the islands. The tide was especially high (high enough to cover the white lichens in some places), so we explored a few places that we usually don't go. We saw harbor seals and a Steller sea lion as well as at least 16 kinds of seabirds. . The prickly pear cacti on "cactus islet" seem do be doing well in spite of some of them being occasionally covered by the tide
While paddling through the northern part of Chatham we found an aluminum flare canister that had been used by the military. It has now been reported to the military so they can clean it up.
click to embiggen!
16 km, YTD 535 km

by Mike J ( at November 30, 2018 04:58 pm

Freya Hoffmeister
Goddess of Love to the Seas

The way home

Now as we were done for this section, it was a pleasure to get off the beach, to sign into a small hostel, and to shower us the same evening, and all our gear the next day. w did laundry, washed our kayaks and tents, and rinsed about everything under the shower. We were asking the hostel owner if they needed extra water money as water is as everywhere here in Baja short, but they were ok. Thanks! The drying in the sunshine went as quick as it could. I oiled my tent zippers and tent pole ends, as otherwise very sure they would be stuck next year.

We got a visit from two local policemen, sent by Victor to our assistance via the office of tourism of Mexico. Thanks for that! But our hostel owner already agreed to store my kayaks and gear, and as we didn’t wanted o offend them, we politely rejected their storing and transporting help. But unfortunately, it turned out that the space the hostel owner envisioned was much too small for the kayaks, so we got back in touch with the police, and the hostel owner agreed to drive us with kayaks and gear to Punta Prieta on Thursday morning.

The kayaks got loaded on Rafaello’s truck, stuck out way too long over the rear end, but tied up securely. Thanks for driving us to Punta Prieta! I volunteered as usual to ride on the open back of the truck to keep a good eye on my babies and gear bags. It was quite a fast and long ride, and I finally jumped off the truck bed quite stiff. But my babies made it safe!

Rigoberto, the local policeman, smiled when he saw us back, but offered a storage place at some house about 10 km down the road. It turned out to be kind of a mixture of a junk yard and a second hand vehicle sale place, but amazingly well organized and clean. But my kayaks were neither for sale nor trash!!!

No, they thought of providing a storage space inside an unused huge 14t truck trailer, safe, out of the sun and dry and under a roof. Quite an unique place for my kayaks for the next 2,5 months! The boys helping us storing the kayaks inside the truck trailer got big eyes when they discovered my own picture on the many stickers on my kayak, and they finally got it what kind of famous “racing horses” they were about to take care of…The owner, Francisco López, was the Delegado Municipal of Punta Prieta, goof friend with Rigoberto, the policeman, and I thanked him for his friendly help. All good, sleep well, my babies, and Merry X-mas! 🙂

Policeman Rigoberto loaded our gear bags and ourselves now on his police car truck, and we drove back to the truck stop aka bus station, to wait for the bus while having some good food. The bus going into the other direction had a long stop at the same place, so we sat there, enjoying good home cooked food while waiting for our direction bus. But that bastard didn’t think of stopping here! Thank goodness, Rigoberto saw it passing by, shouted we had to leave NOW, and we had to leave our half-eaten delicious food on the table with many sorry and jumped into the police car to chase the disappearing bus!

Rigoberto did what policemen do when chasing a vehicle, accelerated to the max, and used flashlight and horn to stop the probably very surprised bus driver…LOL! A few miles down the road after the “official” bus stop, we could conveniently enter the bus a few minutes later. That’s Latin America! THANKS to all our helpers!

The bus turned out to be a very modern long-distance coach with only eight people in there. Nothing what we envisioned, like an overloaded with people, strapped to the top with household items and chicken cages rumbling overland half-falling apart vehicle…LOL! This was a VERY luxurious and convenient way to travel! Ok, maybe 600 pesos is not what everyone would like to afford for the dsiatnce Punta Prieta-Ensenada.

We enjoyed the very soft, nicely reclining seats, and were watching the impressive landscape passing by while I preferred to listen to some spheric music from my phone instead to the noisy film running on many monitors, te only nasty downside of this comfortable ride. They should hand out head sets like in a plane :-). Many sheer beautiful valleys littered with impressive rock formations and 3-4 m high cactus plants were passing by before we reached some agricultural area with obvious water resources and after Rosario, the landscape became more and more villages and cities.

Victor couldn’t pick us himself today, but sent Julián, a kayaking friend with great English and German language (his girl friend is from Flensburg in Germany, very close to my home town in Husum!) knowledge to drive us out to Victor’s house in La Bufadora where we already stayed before two nights. We stopped at the nice “Restaurant La Bufadora”, which was dead empty at 6 pm, as it had really been heavily raining the last day! The first rain since I reached this continent in October! as it goes with rain in mostly dry countries, many deep puddles blocked street traffic and the houses were all not really set for heavy rain but leaking everywhere through the roof. But the food was delicious, we had a Margharita and tequila each, and a lot of good fun talking.Thanks for driving and joining us, Julián!

Victor will pick us up today, drive us to San Diego where we will stay at Jen Kleck’s house again, and I’ll take a plane on Saturday morning back home to my lovingly waiting arms of my partner Peter!

Thanks once more to my paddling partners of this section, Jaime Sharp and Lisa Eick, and to all of our local friends and helpers who made logistics a lot easier for us.

I’ll be back paddling south in mid-February until mid-April. Who likes to join me n that section???

by Freya at November 30, 2018 04:03 pm

Björn Thomasson Design
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Kavat – Anders Ek

Kavat – Anders Ek

En mycket välbyggd Kavat i Vombsjön:

"Hej Björn,

Premiärturen för min Kavat blev i början av september i Vombsjön. Har blivit ett 10-tal turer sedan dess och det blir bara mer och mer njutbart.

Det var mitt första bygge så det tog lite tid, mest pga. ovana med materialen. Träslagen är gran och Western Red Cedar. Skott och skädda gjort i laminerat skummaterial. En markisoleringsskiva och en yogamatta från Stadium blev till en sits. Svankstödet är gjort av några lager tunn plywood som jag laminerade och formade mot ryggstödet på en matrumsstol och sedan klädde med samma yogamatta som sitsen. Sargerna till luckor och

Tack för en utmärkt byggbeskrivning och dina råd på vägen.


Kavat – Anders Ek

Kavat – Anders Ek

by Björn Thomasson at November 30, 2018 08:57 am

November 29, 2018

Piragüismo San Fernando


Campeonato de Andalucia de Larga Distancia
CEAR La Cartuja (01/12/2018)

El próximo 1 de diciembre arranca la 1ª prueba del ránking andaluz y 1ª de las Ligas Andaluzas de piragüismo: Campeonato de Andalucía de Larga Distancia. La competición tendrá lugar en el C.E.A.R. La Cartuja (Sevilla).

El denominado Trofeo de Navidad 'Juan Andrades' de aguas tranquilas comprenderá 72 pruebas entre las modalidades de kayak y canoa.

La competición se inicia a las 9:30 con el K1 Hombre Veterano (35-39, 40-44) y finaliza sobre las 17:10 con las categorías pre-benjamines y alevines.

El recorrido más largo será un circuito de 4,500m al que tendrán que darle dos vueltas pasando por debajo del Puente de la Barqueta y Pasarela de la Cartuja y que lo harán los más mayores a partir de la categoría juvenil, mientras que la infantil neófito (neófito compite por vez primera este temporada), alevin neófito y prebenjamin solo tendrán que dar una sola vuelta a un circuito cerca del CEAR La Cartuja (Centro Especializado de Alto Rendimiento).

El club PIRAGÜISMO SAN FERNANDO espera con mucha ilusión esta competición y sobre todo el primer contacto de los más pequeños con deportistas de su misma categoría y será toda experiencia para ellos.

Horarios participación
HOMBRE Veterano 45-49
MUJER Veterano 45-49
MUJER Veterano 60-64

by Andres Barba ( at November 29, 2018 12:32 pm

November 28, 2018

Paddling Otaku
Otaku is defined as ' a Japanese term used to refer to people with obsessive interests'

The Missing Glaciers of Prince William Sound

A few years ago we took a voyage to Alaska with a lot of gear and a great team. Our goal was to photograph the glaciers in Alaska's, Prince William Sound. What we saw was both amazing and confusing.

Here is the first video installment from that trip.

More to come, subscribe to the Youtube Channel to see more.

by paddlingOTAKU ( at November 28, 2018 01:10 pm

Mike Jackson's Paddling Journal
A journal of my sea kayak trips.

November 23rd - Golden Gardens Park, Seattle (#66)

I joined Setsuko, David and Marc for a Greenland rolling/paddling session at Golden Gardens Park in Seattle. We did a bunch of rolls and had fun experimenting with a Greenland paddle. The park is right beside Shilshole Bay marina.
click to enlarge
3 km, YTD 519 km

by Mike J ( at November 28, 2018 10:40 am

November 27, 2018

Being the Continuing Adventures of a Woman and her Trusty Kayak in New York Harbor, the Hudson River, and Beyond. (with occasional political rants just to keep things lively!)

Escape from Black Friday 2019 - Follow That Floof!

we're coming, floof!

:D / >
kayak smiley not really appropriate but haven't used in so long!

Another Black Friday succesfully escaped. In Michigan this time! We got an absolutely beautiful Friday morning after a cold and gray but great Thanksgiving with the Michigan clan and also some old friends of the family. My sister Karen had come up from Texas and had found this park built around a complex of ponds earlier in her visit. The ponds began with one that was a local effort and expanded to 5 as part of the Depression-era Civil Works Administration. The ponds, which were terraced and interconnected to each other and the creeks that supplied them, were used to raise fish through the 1960's. My uncle Bill referred to the area as "The Rearing Ponds"; my dad, who's been visiting the area since he was a kid (he and my aunt Kathy used to spend their summers with grandparents who lived nearby, that's where the Michigan connection comes in) actually didn't know about it, so this was a fun discovery.

There weren't a lot of people here on Friday, but it must be busy in the summertime. Fish are not officially being grown here anymore but their descendants are still living here and there are brightly-painted little fishing piers all over.

This wasn't the most ambitious Escape from Black Friday ever, there was an aunt and uncle from Detroit who were arriving at noon and we didn't get a particularly early start, but the trails around the ponds made for a very scenic short ramble for me, Dad, sister Karen, Aunt Lovi, family friend Mike B. (very good photographer who kindly loaned me an SD card when I discovered that the one I'd grabbed as I dashed out the door heading for work with my bag on Wednesday morning was a really old one with my digital picture frame slide-show, so had very little room on it) and of course Belle the dog, who was very happy to be included. My dad had originally suggested a 2-part walk, starting here and then continuing on the fairly new Jonesville rail trail, but there was a lot more here than he'd imagined from my sister's description and we decided to leave the rail trail for another walk.

A couple of notes, then it's all pictures, click on one to get to a slideshow view:

1. The rustic bridge that appears to be made out of wood is actually made out of concrete. I don't know for sure but I was wondering if it was by the same folks who built the charming bridges and benches in McCourtie Park in Somerset Center, which I got to visit last summer. I never shared my photos from there, maybe I'll go back and take a look at them one of these weeks when I'm being too boring to post. In the meantime, McCourtie Park is neat enough to have an entry in the Atlas Obscura!

2. In the picture where Mike is taking a picture of something on the ground - that something is a butterfly (or maybe a colorful moth). Not something you expect to see in Michigan in November, but we saw it fly by and land beside the road and Mike got some good pictures of it. Have to ask him if I can share one! 

Aunt Lovey, family friend Mike, my dad Bob, my sister Karen, and of course once again featuring my folks' dog Belle as da Floof. 

by (bonnie) at November 27, 2018 11:12 pm
ute räknas. Ute med kajak räknas minst dubbelt :)

Novembrig solnedgång på Skälderviken

Det har verkligen sin fördel att solen går ner strax innan fyra. Skönt att slippa vara värsta nattugglan för att paddla i solnedgången som på sommaren 🙂 Idag tog vi en runda på Skälderviken i det goa snea solnedgångsljuset. Ett par minusgrader så lite svalt om händerna innan vi kom igång men resten fryser man ... Läs mer...

Inlägget Novembrig solnedgång på Skälderviken dök först upp på

by Erik Sjöstedt at November 27, 2018 07:34 pm

Freya Hoffmeister
Goddess of Love to the Seas

Tue 27/11-2018 Day 322

Pos: 28.6666,-114.2386
Loc: Santa Rosaliita
Acc: Jessy’s Hostel
Dist: 30,0 km
Start: 06:20 End: 12:45

Fortunately, the forecast for today looked doable, winds up to 17 knots from ne to nw, rising and falling again. But first, it was dead calm, and we happily paddled along. Sure, the wind came…it started to blow just when we decided to hug the coast on the next bay, as the cliffs looked so wonderful and we had ample time to reach Santa Rosalita.

I enjoyed paddling behind some rocks and through cliff gaps, while Lisa preferred staying much more offshore. She doesn’t know what pleasures she is missing while hugging the coast…so many details to see, always new…

But when it blew so strong north east that we barely made progress any more, I decided we should land on an inviting easy sandy beach, and to wait for a while until the wind would be calming down or swing to the north west as fore casted. Why punching into an almost 20 knots headwind with no needs? The wind will die and turn when the tide will change in about 1,5-2 hrs, like yesterday.

We landed, sat down and we agreed reading for a while, and when we felt a cool onshore north west wind, it was time to go again! I kept on hugging the coast, Lisa kept on cutting the bay offshore to save miles…she finally turned in to paddle also inside Isla Adelaida.

We realized the island was full of sea lions! I happily paddled up to them to take pictures, and I enjoyed to watch their family life, as usual from a reasonable distance. It might be my 500ed sea lion colony I am watching, but I still find pleasure! Lisa preferred meanwhile to drift far away…hey, sea lions are friendly and don’t attack you! 🙂

One more lumpy point to pass with the full exposed Punta Santa Rosalita, but conditions were nothing too challenging. Still nice to turn finally into the bay and to see the village! Civilization as us back! Nothing huge here, but they should have cell phone reception and internet? No reception for now…

We landed behind the last harbor wall where all the fishing boats were parked, and put up tent in the far corner. We walked into “town” to ask for internet to see the long-term fore cast, and found out there is no phone reception (today only? Telcel showed up, but we couldn’t connect…), but houses and the local shop had internet, probably via satellite. We were allowed to jump on, and checked the fore cast.

What we saw was discouraging…as much as we had a long-term calm weather gap, as much it looked now like high seas and stronger winds now for at least six days. Them maybe two day better, then strong southerlies…as far as we can see…we both felt like not waiting out the weather, if waiting would make it work at all on the next remote stretch…we could imagine better things to do, and decided to finish our mutual trip section here, two weeks earlier than roughly planned. But all good! Home, sweet home is lurking!

We survived, had no major incident or accident, had ample easy good weather, made a lot of distance, saw plenty of Mexico, enjoyed paddling and each other’s company. Lisa proved, despite her little offshore sea kayaking experience, to be a solid strong paddling partner with a good speed. She learned a lot about surf landings and -launchings, and expedition kayaking in general. We had our share of a bit more windy weather and more lumpy water the she could push her limits, and she did well. Thanks for cooking our dinners, and sharing this section of my North American circumnavigation with me, Lisa!

As we now stayed unplanned in Santa Rosalita and had made no contacts before here, we decided to book ourselves into the one and only hostel, for 14 $ each affordable. Clean, with hot shower and (weak) internet in the nearby shop, this was the best choice to organize our stuff before we can make plans where to store my kayaks for the next 2,5 months, and how to get away from here! Victor, our main Mexican contact from Ensenada, might help us, thanks! First, a local lady with her truck helped us to get our stuff and kayaks off the beach. Thanks!

by Freya at November 27, 2018 07:10 pm

Mon 26/11-2018 Day 321

Pos: 28.8128,-114.3766
Loc: El Marron
Acc: Hilleberg Allak tent
Dist: 49,5 km
Start: 06:00 End: 15:50

We heard some vague hint of large swells again on Wednesday from our two young American neighbor campers, and when I was asking Karel for the outlook, he confirmed. So we urgently need to be in Santa Rosalita by Tuesday , or we will be stuck for minimum three or more days again on a beach, and this time with not enough water. We would prefer a village stay, best with internet and food shopping. Both we are hoping to get in Santa Rosalita.

But first we have to paddle about 70 km. The forecast was for low seas today and tomorrow, but the wind was finally forecasted (and happening…!) stronger than we expected. It was ne to ne up to 20 knots, afternoon nw to ne up to 15 knots. Sea 1,20 m. Very correct. We started with 20 knots offshore wind on low seas and had to push hard not to get blown offshore. Seas finally built to some uncomfortable dynamics on some long stretch due south, but there we had at least the 20 knots wind rather in our back. Still, we were very happy to turn around a long rocky headland into ta sheltered wide bay. We could squeeze through the outer rocks to avoid a wide berth, and then god sent a small wonderful calm landing beach facing south, even before the wide bay. It was just on the headland, so we did not have to round another long spit into an even deeper wide bay. I saw new crab pots piled up, and some fishing shack which looked very active. Great place for a rest! And we needed one after the lumpy windy paddle!

We grabbed some lunch, and had a quick walk around. The shack looked in good shape, laundry was hanging on the lines to dry, a boat on a trailer was parked down on the big bay. But no car or any person around, it seems like the fishermen were just gone and would be back soon. Or why do they leave laundry out?

The rocks on the headland looked different, white and solid, almost like granite. Very pleasant place! But we noticed the wind had calmed down now, the whitecaps were gone, just on the tide change as expected. We had regained breath and energy, and decided to push on as far as we could today. Seas were calm now on this wide bay, and we dared to cut across the bay with wind going more and more down. One hour, it was almost calm! But the wind came back, north east again, but not 20 but rather 5 knots now, and it stayed. We felt we could handle that, and continued to cut across the bays! Still, we had to watch not to get blow too much out…

We were aiming for a headland which was 18 km away from our rest place, the distance would be just fine for today with about 22 km left to Santa Rosalita for tomorrow. The headland should have a light house and there would be a calm sandy beach landing. But unfortunately, we were aiming all the time to the wrong headland, 10 km further away, and paddled a bit too much out. Before I noticed on my GPS track, I tried to correct our “drift” offshore by pointing more inland, but Lisa didn’t to follow and paddled on “a straight line” to our original headland. Finally I noticed my aiming mistake when pointing inshore didn’t get me more on the planned line, and I had to yell at Lisa to please come in and to me.
I explained her our aiming mistake, and we agreed to better take the original landing now. It would take us half an hour anyway to paddle in! The light house finally showed up in the very last corner. Also, it looked like there was kind of a camp site and some fishing shacks and boats. Nobody to see. All dead again?

We landed easily, though when you underestimate the low surf, just a larger one forces you into a high brace…I got a wet arm! What a shame! 🙂 We had to carry all gear a long way to a dry sandy spot, just besides the access road. Well, good, just in case the weather gets worse than the old forecast over night we could maybe drive out somehow. But we are still hoping to reach the left 25 km to Santa Rosalita on our own keel!

by Freya at November 27, 2018 05:04 pm

The Ikkatsu Project
In the Service of the Ocean

If I Had a Million Dollars

I wish I were a millionaire… for lots of reasons, actually. But today is Giving Tuesday, and I am seeing messages on social media and through email from scores of worthy nonprofits that are looking for funding today. If I had deeper pockets, I believe I would like to support them all. 

If these other organizations are anything like the Ikkatsu Project, every dollar raised is important. A single donation can make a big difference in whether a particular program gets done next year or not. Or, more than likely, the program is run at a lower level, costing less money but impacting dramatically fewer people and achieving more modest gains than it could have. That’s what funding does, or a lack of funding, as the case may be.

Even with all the other good organizations asking for assistance today, and even if you’re not a millionaire, I hope you will consider a gift to the Ikkatsu Project today that will help fund the 2019 programs. If you have any questions about where your gift will go and the impact it will have, please call or write and I’ll be happy to answer your questions directly. I’d love to hear from you.

To give, just click here or on the “Donate” button on the Ikkatsu Project home page. And thank you for your support and encouragement.

by Ken Campbell at November 27, 2018 03:15 pm

November 26, 2018

Being the Continuing Adventures of a Woman and her Trusty Kayak in New York Harbor, the Hudson River, and Beyond. (with occasional political rants just to keep things lively!)

Frogma Eye Test: Find the Floof

Starring Belle Aldinger (my parents' pup) as The Floof. Click to enlarge.

Seriously, I almost deleted this when I was doing the first cut of my vacation photos because I couldn't figure out why I took this!

by (bonnie) at November 26, 2018 06:14 pm

Freya Hoffmeister
Goddess of Love to the Seas

Sun 25/11-2018 Day 320

Pos: 29.1132,-114.6769
Loc: Bahia Sebastian Vizcaino
Acc: Hilleberg Allak tent
Dist: 25,0 km
Start: 07:05 End: 11:45

We were so ready to go again after three lazy rest days on a beach! Karel’s forecast was still 1,50 m seas, but low winds in the morning with 3-8 knots nw, gusts up to 14 knots, in the afternoon moderately stronger with 11-13 knots, gusts 17. The surf and sea looked all right for us, we happily launched through low to moderate surf.

Lisa seemed to be a bit surprised about the real conditions behind the surf, and kept on paddling out so far I had to call her back when I was also out. It is not getting calmer there…Today it was the first time she was out on seas which were…yes, what were they? Rough? Lumpy? Swelly? At least not dead calm with gentle swell as we had most other days. The swell was still a bit up after the very rough day yesterday and was feeling more than 1,50 m, and it was kind of a confused lumpy up and down. Additionally, the low rising sun in our face made things much more tricky and advanced to feel comfortable.
But the worst case would be seas sickness for us, as it was hard to keep a fix with the sun. Nothing was breaking, it just felt for Lisa new and different – and even for me after so many days of dead calm seas… She kept up very well, kept balance and just kept on paddling. It is like riding a bike in these conditions, keep on going, and it is less likely to fall in 🙂

We tried to either focus the horizon offshore, or after a while when the sun was higher, the coast. But sometimes, it felt more comfortable NOT to look at the coast with some intimidating crashing breakers…I was asking Lisa if she likes to return or to go in one of the three next good landing corners, but she was fine and liked to keep on paddling. Good job! But she admitted she was happy that I was there…

As long as we paddled more east than south, the sea went down slightly, and we could relax a bit more. But soon, we had to paddle almost due south before we could turn around a distinct headland with even more lumpy seas and large swells. We both kept on pushing, but we were both looking forward to paddle around the headland into calmer seas and now even due east to north east to reach a very sheltered calm landing bay.

We decided to call it a day already here, we had enough of lumpy seas and large swells, it was Lisa’s first day in such conditions! Plus the sun in the face…not easy. We might have safely paddled on for maybe 8 km to some hook before the coast would have trended due south again – and exposed to wind and swell. We landed easy in low surf on a flat sandy beach on half tide.

This bay had some old fishing shacks, all abandoned, including maybe eight fishing boats, one of it half burned. It is such a pity that all the stuff is just left here to rot and no one values the location any more. One shack had even some fish tanks with a fancy water hose to the sea to pump sea water up and down to keep the fish fresh, including satellite dish. About four old vans stranded here also, used as accommodation for a while, now all rotten and abandoned, like the rest out of function since many years.

Only two small houses looked like they were in shape at least for some seasonal use, with some lovingly made stone back yard. Nice to look at! The rest of the old shacks they should simply burn down…

by Freya at November 26, 2018 05:03 pm

Sat 24/11-2018 Day 319

Pos: 29.2407,-114.8330
Loc: Playa Cuchillo
Acc: Hilleberg Allak tent
no paddling today

Finally, the strong wind came. Up to 30 knots today, very rough and high seas. Day three of our rest days on the beach. Hopefully the last? We are ready to go again! But it has to calm down quite a lot ove rnight. So far, the forecast is 1,50 – 1,20 m, with low winds all day. Sounds not too bad.

I went for a long hike south today, and reached the cliffs on the other side of our long beach area. Impressive seas! I found a very deep, very long and very narrow gap in the cliffs, with a small natural bridge over it. I didn’t dare to cross…it looked too fragile, and it was so windy…

Back in my tent, I had to wipe my bare legs from the dust. The last 500 m, I was walking in low flying sand, it felt like walking on a sea of fast moving clouds. Amazing picture.

We got another fish filet from our young neighbor guys with the small van, they went out spear fishing even in the rough seas today. Brave, thanks! Together with the (for her unknown) grains Lisa finally dared to cook, it was one of the best dinners we had. Delicious!

Hope we can paddle again tomorrow!

by Freya at November 26, 2018 05:02 pm

Fri 23/11-2018 Day 318

Pos: 29.2407,-114.8330
Loc: Playa Cuchillo
Acc: Hilleberg Allak tent
no paddling today

Forecasted were gusts up to 25 knots, but winds stayed calm in the morning, in the afternoon under 15 knots. But the seas went clearly up, some nasty swells were breaking on the cliffs. Our bay stayed more or less calm-ish.

I did a long cliff hike today, quite impressive coast! Lisa didn’t find much energy for a longer hike and turned around early. No wonder, by her regular breakfast consisting of coffee only, and maybe one energy bar later…there is nothing but oats in the morning. The scenery is rugged, the surface covered with lose sharp rocks. One has to take very much care not to slip, or some bad abrasion of skin would be following. I took that care, and rather went down on all four, if necessary. Some cactus, some low bushes, some petty solid agave plants, otherwise only sharp lose rocks everywhere. We saw one fox or wild dog on the beach today, some mouse holes, a few lizards, that’s about it on the animal side. Shells allover the rocks, carried up by birds?, pretty abalone, twirly mussels and solid white clam shells.

I was back for lunch, cooked some noodles, and rested for a while, before I decided it’s so low wind and warm-ish today, I could now start to dye my gray roots of my hair…thought and done, and I started the messy job inside my tent. Lisa was of some assistance to take care about not having too much stains allover face and body and tent. When it came to rinsing time, I was hoping I wouldn’t come back out of the sea as a dark skinned person 🙂 The waves were prestty big, and I actually enjoyed the dip for a long while. The water is warm, maybe 20 deerees! Some good freshwater rinse, some good conditioner, and my hair was colorful and shiny again.

To dry off and to get fully warm agin, I went for a fast hike up the next small mountain, a stepp climb up the front side, a mellow walk on the back side down. I was obviously flipping up some nasty loose cactus branch with one fot to stick painful in the ankle of the other. To pull it out I used my hiking poles as plyers…outch! It was hurting for quite a while! But slipping on the lose rocks would have been worse. Dinenr time with a wonderful red sunset sky! At least one more rest day with even higher swells tomorrow, and ofr Sunday, we’ll see…

by Freya at November 26, 2018 05:01 pm

Thu 22/11-2018 Day 317

Pos: 29.2407,-114.8330
Loc: Playa Cuchillo
Acc: Hilleberg Allak tent
no paddling today

The night with the almost full moon was dead calm, but did I hear some rain drops? Almost impossible…
We woke to a calm day, and relaxed…the wind will come…maybe at 11 am, it started to blow moderately, then stronger. Nothing special, we could have paddled for half a day, but we deserved our rest day!

We filled our time with a lot of reading this morning, before our bodies decided to do some different exercise of a short hike into the back country. We finally pulled out our hiking poles, but what Lisa meant as using hiking poles was different to my idea. I liked a sporty walk, she rather liked “window shopping” with dragging along only one pole. Ok. I decided to climb an inviting single mountain, she kept on walking on the flat. Up on the top, I found for maybe now a dozen times in the bush a pair of shoes, actually two with that pair of flip flops. Why do people here dump their shore everywhere? They also dumped on the mountain top a frying pan, a spatula, a scarf, many other trash and about fifty empty tins of food. One full one I was tempted to take down to inspect the contents…probably some sardines or such according to the flat oval shape. Can people not keep their trash with them…? The desert 0flats were also littered with bottles of all shapes. A pity and shame.

I rather kept my eye on interesting shells, plants and whatever nature had to offer. Many amazing small things. Back in camp we had fun to watch our new “neighbors” with my binoculars, a small campervan with two guys going spear fishing. A local truck drove by them, and it seemed they exchanged some paperwork? Will that (probbaly) ranger also come to us? He did, and it turned out it was only a survey about who is using the coast with how many people, for what and for how long. No permit required, no money, we did no unallowed stuff. All good. We are in Mexico, not in Southern California or Europe…thanks for the Mexican hospitality!

The two guys also had spotted us, and came over to us with a chat and with a freshly caught fish. Thanks for that! But we both had to admit we were neither skilfull nor keen to cut and clean it into some filets…they guys were volunteering to do it for us, and came back later with the filets. Thanks so much! A nie addition to our dinner!

Two more days to spend, we will go tomorrow cliff walking into the other direction. Exciting!

by Freya at November 26, 2018 05:00 pm

Wed 21/11-2018 Day 316

Pos: 29.2407,-114.8330
Loc: Playa Cuchillo
Acc: Hilleberg Allak tent
Dist: 28,6 km
Start: 07:00 End: 13:10

The launch was a bit tricky. As expected, on the highest tide time this morning, the water reached over the flat sandy foreshore up to the steep gravel bar we were camping on, and created some reflective waves. I gave Lisa a go to push in, jump on and to close the deck with a bit of fumbling, but I stood in the shallows for three breakers before I could let her go over the first breaker area. She was lucky with the outer line to be able to paddle straight out.
I rumbled my own kayak down the gravel in the shallows on a lull, but had also some problems to close my deck quickly and got a face wash. Two more washes, and out I was. Thank goodness!

Our energy level was better this morning after a longer afternoon, but we were still both looking forward to the next days of strong wind which would give us some rest. Today’s seas and winds were still calm, but for the next three and maybe another day, it would be winds up to 25-30 knots with seas over two meters.

We had some good amount of fresh water to just survive for 7-8 days, but some extra and maybe for some showers and a hairwash-rinse would be nice. When we came across the fishing camp of San José with a sheltered shallow sandy landing and bunch of trucks and trailers parked on the beach, we decided to stop and to ask for fresh water. Just after landing, a truck with four men came down to us and we got invited to drive up to the only real house and to refill our empty bags. Thanks for that! I took the ride, Lisa watched the kayaks. The guys were so friendly to also give us two bottles of Coca Cola plus two cans of apple juice. Nice, thanks! Some launchig help on the shallow sand was also appreciated.

They asked us if we would like to stay, but our idea of three to four days off on a beach was different. We liked privacy, some naked swims and agood hiking area…the next wide sandy bay after a long line of interesting cliffs was just perfect for that! Ok, we could have paddled maybe a bit longer today…but the cliffs and the bay were too good to miss. Shallow as the other beach, the surf in was easy.

One abandoned shed and four not really recently used fishing boats were the only sign of people here – and five motorbikes and four off road cars rushing by as participants of the obviously still ongoing race Baja 1000. Then we had the bay for ourselves. We chose a camp spot a bit away from the boats and shed on some rocky sand spot, which we cleaned with some effort from the worst rocks. It was a bit sheltered from the upcoming wind behind some bushes, and we put up tents well staked out. I also cleaned and oiled our tent poles before they would be stuck together for maybe five nights. Corrosion is growing quickly here in the salty and dusty air, and then it would be hard to take them apart again.

We enjoyed each a long bath in the sea with hair wash and fresh water shower, what a luxury! Glad we got that extra water…some first beach walk revealed a lot of collector’s items, like sand dollars (for me…!), many shells and other interesting things. Full moon will be tomorrow, but this night’s moon was already bright, and I enjoyed sitting outside for a longer while. Life could be worse! No paddling tomorrow! Our sore bodies will appreciate the rest.

by Freya at November 26, 2018 04:09 pm
ute räknas. Ute med kajak räknas minst dubbelt :)

Solig vinterkänsla hemomkring

Idag hade vi säsongens första morgon med lite vinterkänsla hemomkring, ingen snö dessvärre men åtta minusgrader och en grymt fin morgon. Vi körde upp och gick lite vid Västersjön, Rössjön och den lilla gölen vid Fåratångsmossen. Underbart väder och underbar morgon, ja förmiddag också och det ser ut att hålla i sig. I natt drog ... Läs mer...

Inlägget Solig vinterkänsla hemomkring dök först upp på

by Erik Sjöstedt at November 26, 2018 03:50 pm

Piragüismo San Fernando


Día completo del club, prueba de kayak, reencuentro con veteranos del piragüismo, lechugeta de mar, desperfectos y entorno peligroso del pantalán flotante y entrenamiento de los mayores del club por el Puente de Lavaera ( foto de Carlos Rodriguez: "El guichi de Carlos")La imagen puede contener: una o varias personas, exterior, agua y naturaleza

La imagen puede contener: una persona, sonriendo, exterior, agua y naturaleza

La imagen puede contener: una persona, sonriendo, océano, niño(a), exterior y agua

La imagen puede contener: una o varias personas, cielo, nubes, exterior, agua y naturaleza

La imagen puede contener: cielo, exterior, agua y naturaleza

La imagen puede contener: exterior y agua

La imagen puede contener: exterior, agua y naturaleza

La imagen puede contener: exterior, agua y naturaleza

La imagen puede contener: planta, exterior y agua

La imagen puede contener: exterior y agua

by Andres Barba ( at November 26, 2018 01:10 pm

Paddle Making (and other canoe stuff)
Functional paddle art and other canoe related ramblings

Historic Paddle Illustration - Rindisbacher Print

Here's another historic artwork by Swiss artist Peter Rindisbacher (1806-1834). This particular piece entitled  An Indian removing in the summer with his wife and family is now in the collection of the Library and Archives of Canada.

An Indian removing in the summer with his wife and family.
Rindisbacher, Peter, 1806-1834.
Library and Archives Canada,
Peter Winkworth Collection of Canadiana
Accession No. R9266-4116
MIKAN no. 3835262 (1 item)
Copyright : Expired

Note that Rindisbacher portrays the male in the bow with his wife steering in the stern. As in other depictions of his artwork, the female is using a paddle with a bobble grip and holding it in the "broom sweeping" style of paddling.

Chippewa Canoe
Peter Rindisbacher

by Murat ( at November 26, 2018 03:53 am

November 25, 2018


Los chicos están motivados

Se ve venir claramente el frente, con viento y cortina de agua.. nos pilla en medio del curso de tecnificación de esta semana...

no pasa nada... de todas maneras nos vamos a mojar....

Incansables ...

El segundo día con más movimiento,  jugando un poco en las olas de la bahía..

Cansados y felices!

by Jose Bello ( at November 25, 2018 07:57 pm

Fotos,videos y relatos de mi navegaciones en kayak de mar


Ejercicios de Yoga recomendados para kayakistas para ganar en fuerza, equilibrio y elasicidad leer mas

November 25, 2018 09:35 am

November 24, 2018
Lightweight canoe and kayak travel

Paddling 2019 Calendar

This year, I decided to offer a Paddling 2019 Calendar consisting of images that I’ve made throughout the years. The images are from the Lake Superior and Boundary Waters region with one exception from the Lower Canyons of the Rio Grande River.

You can get the calendar here: Paddling 2019 Calendar

If you order before midnight on 11/25, you get 25% off. So, act fast. Buy early and buy often. These make great gifts for you canoe and kayak loving friends.

Save 25% on orders of calendars


Cannot be combined with other offers

Does not apply to ebooks or services

Ends November 25th at 11:59 PM



The post Paddling 2019 Calendar appeared first on You can leave a comment by clicking here: Paddling 2019 Calendar.

by Bryan Hansel at November 24, 2018 02:36 pm

Paddling Otaku
Otaku is defined as ' a Japanese term used to refer to people with obsessive interests'

The Adventure Otaku Gift Guide 2018 - 5th Edition

It's that time of year again, The music is playing, the fire is cozy, and it is time to buy some gifts for the adventurer in your life.

A few changes this year. With the switch to Adventure Otaku (from Paddling Otaku) I can now talk about gift ideas for people besides paddlers! Doesn't everyone know an Adventurer? Also, this years list will include Amazon Affiliate links. Maybe you could help me make a few pennies, but still no ads. So that's a positive right?

With just a few exceptions these are all items I have used and truly love. Whether you are just starting out in the outdoors or are a seasoned professional, there are things here for everyone. This year the list ranges from $24 dollars to $1000, depending on your budget, But fully half of them are under $200.

So put on some Christmas music, get some cocoa, and check out this years list!

Lodge Cast Iron Skillet  ($24.95) - Obviously you aren’t taking this backpacking, but for car camping or vanlifing there is nothing better. Easy to maintain, and naturally non-stick, these pans are versatile, durable and with a little care will literally last for generations.

Black Diamond Spot ($39.95)- This headlamp is on the list most years, and with good reason. In the brightness vs dollars category, this is the hands down winner, a great headlamp particularly at the price, and every year they make it just a little better. No affiliate link for this one, if you order it, make sure you are getting the 325 lumen version. Amazon only seems to carry last years model at 300 lumens. 

Patagonia R0 Sun Long Sleeve Shirt ($49.00) - This year I replaced the shirt I paddle in. I took 14 shirts to the fitting room,  to find the one that fit my needs. It had to be comfortable, wick efficiently and offer UPF 50 protection with long sleeves. The Patagonia came out the winner. As I was trying them on I was hoping some underdog like NRS would offer the best shirt, and a lot of shirts offered the features I needed, but none fit like the Patagonia. 

Jetboil Mighty Mo ($49.95) - The most underrated backpacking stove out there. Slightly bigger than the revered Pocket Rocket it adds a push button igniter and a pressure regulator for better performance in cold weather and altitude. Well worth the $5 more than the MSR. 

Snow Peak Pack and Carry Fire Place ($89.25 for the small) - I bought this mainly because it would look cool in photographs, but it is amazing. I use it most often when I am teaching on a cold day so students can warm up, even though it is fairly small it is great for physical warmth and psychological warmth. I set it up at a party a while back and it immediately became the focal point. Best of all it folds flat. I have the smallest, it is only about a foot across, they get much bigger. 

Patagonia Nano Puff  ($199) - My go to winter insulation piece. Because I often adventure in wet weather I try and stay away from down. This packs small and keeps me warm. What else do you need. 

ACR Personal Locator Beacon ($289.95) -  I don’t want the level of communication that most people want in the backcountry. I want a rugged reliable device that has one feature. When the pooh hits the fan, and my life is in jeopardy, get me the hell out of here. This is that device. Built to a much higher level of durability than a spot or Inreach, it has one button, one use, and no service fee. 

Goal zero Sherpa 100 ac ($299.95) - I used the Sherpa 50 for the last Alaska expedition - actually two of them - and they were awesome. This updated version with a lithium ion battery is a fraction of the weight with a lot more power. It has more power than the Yeti 400 I use in my van. This will power just about anything, from your GoPro to a laptop. 

GoPro Hero black 7 ($400) - Mark my words, this camera will be looked back on as the camera that saved GoPro. For two reasons. First is the image stabilization. Nearly gimbal good. Second, is the TimeWarp - I really prefer to call it hyper lapse, which is what it is - which combines a traditional time lapse with the above mentioned image stability. Both are amazing. Additionally, an unsung feature is the new user interface which is so much better than the last version. 

iPad Pro ($799) - I am writing this post in a tiny house on my iPad Pro. I do everything but final book layout on my iPad Pro and I absolutely love it. It has replaced laptops for me, easily. I use it extensively planning classes as well as for media consumption. It is smaller, lighter and frankly better than any piece of portable computing gear I have used. I absolutely love it. To have access to satellite imagery, detailed weather and communication anywhere is impressive, If only it were waterproof. 

Mustang Survival EP 6.5 Ocean Racing Jacket ($999) - Okay, as I am just delving into sailing, I have no need of this product. Yet. But this is the coolest looking jacket I have ever seen. Mustang survival makes some great gear. This looks like it belongs in a sci-fi movie. *This is the only product on this list I haven’t used. 

So that is this years list. Let me know what you think. In about a week there will be a second list of Stocking stuffer ideas, with nothing over $50. I hope you had a great Thanksgiving and maybe it is evens snowing where you live. Happy Holidays!

by paddlingOTAKU ( at November 24, 2018 10:38 am

November 22, 2018

The Ikkatsu Project
In the Service of the Ocean

It’s Not About the Turkey

If you cast your eyes about the planet, you won’t find many countries that actually set aside a day for being thankful, give everybody the day off work and declare a national holiday. It is a uniquely (almost) American concept, a time of grateful introspection and a reminder of what we could be as a country, if we really want to be.

Of course, these days it seems like it’s become a day to carbo load for the Black Friday rush, to rest up on the couch and scour the football games for new blocking schemes and zone coverage techniques that can be put to use later in the evening at the Target electronics counter. (It’s not even really Black Friday anymore, more like Black Thursday afternoon. Which is a rant for another time.)

However you choose to spend your Thanksgiving, I hope it’s filled with happiness, family, food and friends. It’s good to be thankful… we have a lot to be thankful for.

by Ken Campbell at November 22, 2018 01:43 pm

Being the Continuing Adventures of a Woman and her Trusty Kayak in New York Harbor, the Hudson River, and Beyond. (with occasional political rants just to keep things lively!)

Happy Thanksgiving -

Ticked Off Turkey! from Bonnie on Vimeo.

With the usual big 'ol THHHHHBBBTTTH from Ticked Off Turkey!

by (bonnie) at November 22, 2018 06:00 am

November 21, 2018

En blogg om padling og annet friluftsliv i (hovedsakelig) Vesterålen

Fargespill til Gjæva

Det var ikke allverdens tid til tur sist søndag, men med slike farger måtte man jo bare ut på havet uansett. Jeg skulle uansett innom klubbnaustet, så da ble det en tur derfra.

Jeg hadde med kameraet, men det sto ikke minnekort i så det ble begrenset hvor mye bilder jeg kunne ta... Det er heldigvis plass til noen få på selve kameraet, for det er en smule frustrerende å ikke kunne fotografere når det er forhold som dette. Her er stranda på Risøya.

Jeg svingte innom Trollskjeret i dag. Der satt det en merkelig skarv på toppen. Årsaken til at den var så rar, var nok at det egentlig var en havørn.

Nede ved vannet traff jeg på en fjæreplytt, det er lenge siden sist. Men det var litt for mørkt til ta bilde av den.

Jeg nærmer meg Gjæva! En gjeng haveller holdt meg med selskap utover, de var i hvert fall sju stykker. De er lett gjenkjennelige på den fine lyden.

Nytt skjær dokumentert!

Jeg har jo novemberrullet allerede, men det er jo ikke vits å vente til desember for neste gang, så jeg tok ei økt her ute. Jeg er ingen mester på selfies over vann, under blir det visst enda verre... Men jeg rullet i hvert fall en del ganger på hver side og det gikk greit. Misset en gang, men klarte likevel å komme meg opp på andre forsøk så det er godkjent likevel. Jeg er heldigvis dommer selv, nemlig.

Returen passet akkurat til å få hurtigruta inn på styrbord side, inn under brua. Fokuspunktet i bildet derimot... Var ikke det minste perfekt.

Rett og slett kjempefint på havet i dag.

by Miamaria Padlemia ( at November 21, 2018 08:39 pm
ute räknas. Ute med kajak räknas minst dubbelt :)

Novembersol på Rönneå

Igår blev det en paddelrunda på Rönneå. Soligt igen, nästan tjatigt med sånt här novemberväder 🙂 Lite snålt med ljusa timmar nu så det gäller att passa på. Lite blåsigt från öst. Skönt att röra om lite ytvatten.

Inlägget Novembersol på Rönneå dök först upp på

by Erik Sjöstedt at November 21, 2018 02:24 pm