Paddling Planet

October 23, 2018

Mountain and Sea Scotland
Hillwalking and Sea Kayaking in Scotland

Autumn's glories on Loch Maree

After what has been far too long, due to either work commitments or poor weather, I planned a day kayaking - but on this occasion not sea kayaking.  Mid to late October sees the very best of the autumnal colours in Scotland and I wanted to experience the colour show from the water.

A drive across northern Scotland on an early morning brought me to the head of the road which snakes down Glen Docherty to the small village of Kinlochewe.  The prefix "Kin" is an anglicisation of the Gaelic Ceann, indicating the head of a loch or glen.  Kinlochewe is a bit of an anomaly, because the village sits not at the head of Loch Ewe, but at the head of Loch Maree.  Loch Maree is drained by the River Ewe which does lead to salt water in Loch Ewe - confused?!

It had been a grey morning all the way over from Aberdeenshire but the forecast was for clear skies and sunshine - and sure enough as I got ready at Slattadale on the shore of Loch Maree the cloud sheet was peeling away.

During the previous days Scotland had seen a real east/west weather split with truly torrential rain deluging the western side of the country while the east remained fairly dry.  Such was the volume of rain that Loch Maree was a good way above its usual level - by some half a metre. 

I headed out to the nearest of the islands which are such a feature of Loch Maree, and into a seemingly drowned landscape where one could paddle among the bases of tall pines.

The other great feature of Loch Maree is the grand backdrop of Slioch (the spear), one of the most prominent Munros and adding so much to the character of Loch Maree. The clearance in the weather hadn't yet reached that end of the loch and Slioch was just emerging from cloud, backed by a solid grey wall.

Add in the pines of the islands and you have a quintessentially Highland scene.  I set out to paddle through, around and among the islands as my route for the day.

There was real warmth in the sunshine and with no wind it was turning into a beautiful autumnal day.  Thus far the colours had been predominantly the rich dark green of the pines and the warm brown of the hillsides.......

.....but that all changed as I passed around the outside of the islands and the view to the north eastern shore opened up - a riot of gold and yellow with the russet of bracken below; just stunning.

On the opposite side of the loch a searing brilliance of sunlight rendered everything into silhouette.

Amongst all this dazzling light and scenery, I found a lovely spot to land and enjoy a leisurely late breakfast.

by Ian Johnston ( at October 23, 2018 09:01 pm


Cinturon para remolque largo en kayak de mar, en la sencillez está el éxito.

El remolque largo es una técnica habitual en KDM, especialmente para los guías. En la línea minimalista de la que soy partidario, muestro la mejor opción de diseño de esta pieza fundamental del equipo de un guía, desde mi opinión y experiencia.
En mar el remolque largo siempre a la cintura. Si veis a alguien con una bolsa de remolque largo en la anilla de un chaleco arnesado, prevención, esa persona no tiene experiencia en remolque en mar con olas y distancia. Los chalecos arnesados son solo para su uso como remolque corto y durante un momento (que es lo que se hace en el río). Por otro lado, para mi los remolques cortos en mar deben ser de contacto (mucho más versátiles y que te permiten dar apoyo directo al rescatado), el remolque es aquí de barco a barco. Aquí hay más información sobre los remolques (click).
Aunque cada cual tiene sus preferencias en uno u otro modelo comercial, yo me suelo confeccionar el mío tuneando sistemas de aguas bravas, para disponer de un cinto simple y cómodo que permita remolques en condiciones duras y durante mucho tiempo, a la vez que sea un sistema sencillo a la hora de ponerlo en uso.

Como ya hice en su momento una entrada en este blog sobre la confección de este tipo de cinturón no me repito, aquí está el proceso (click).

Estas son las características que debe cumplir:

  • Cinto acolchado y con sistema de liberación rápida (que permita su liberación en tensión)
  • Bolsa cilíndrica para adujar el cabo, con cierre de tanka lo más cercano posible al borde. La bolsa debe ser grande para que la maniobra de guardar el cabo sea rápida. El borde de apertura debe ser lo suficientemente rígido para que se mantenga abierto mientras se introduce el cabo tras su uso. 
  • La bolsa fija al cinturón.
  • El cabo de polipropileno (flotante) con una longitud de 10 m. Conviene rematar los extremos de los nudos, vale el tubo termoretractil.
  • Mosquetón de apertura amplia y resistente a la corrosión con un sistema de cierre de fuerte, sin muelle (nada de mosquetones de plástico). Bollarín que mantenga a flote el extremo del cabo con el mosquetón, y que hace de tope al cabo para que no se salga de la bolsa una vez cerrada.
  • Disipador elástico, no es imprescindible pero hace bastante más cómodo el remolque si las olas son grandes.


Los puntos de roce protegidos por macarrón de plástico

 Tow line y contact tow (largo y corto)

by Jose Bello ( at October 23, 2018 08:01 pm
Triathlon, cycling, sea kayaking, swimming and life in the Scottish Highlands

October Challenge #2: Declutter

For me, this is the Autumn equivalent of Spring cleaning.  This seems to be my season for a good clear-out.

It happens when I put the cycling shirts and shirts away for another winter and get out the long tights and warm jackets.

When I see kit I haven't used for a year or two I think, "will I ever use that again"?  If the answer is no, it goes on eBay.

Sometimes it sells, sometimes it doesn't.  There's always a charity shop.  In the last two months I've sold 19 items.  They've been a mix of old sports kit, bags, rucksacks and camera equipment.  I have substantially decluttered my kit boxes.  And on eBay I've made a few quid.

The trick with eBay is knowing what price will satisfy you.  If there's something that you'll never, ever use and you don't mind a relatively low price, then a 7-day auction is the way to go.  I time them to finish about Friday 4pm.

You need to set a low initial price to attract buyers.  But the bidding always happens in the last few minutes.  Only one person might bid.  So they might get a bargain.  You might only receive that low, initial price.  You have to be happy with that.

There again, you might be surprised.  An old Chris King cycle hub that was trashed and ready to be binned sold for £60!

If it's something you feel is still really good and you won't be happy with a low bid, then you should use Buy It Now.  If it's in good condition, set it at under half-retail price.  If it's like new, then see what other sellers are doing and undercut them.

Then be patient.

I've sold a £600 video camera on eBay but it took a few months.  As I write, I have a small drone (brand new) and a hard-shell Sony waterproof camcorder housing up for sale.  They might be gone by the time you read this.  The housing has been for sale for ages, and I've gradually reduced the price.  I might do the same soon with the drone.

But best of all, I have decluttered.

by Simon Willis ( at October 23, 2018 08:00 pm

Freya Hoffmeister
Goddess of Love to the Seas

Tue 23/10-2018 Day 287

Pos: 33.9684,-119.7080
Loc: Santa Cruz Island
Acc: Hilleberg Allak tent
Dist: 37,0 km
Start: 08:20 End: 15:00

Our beach was once more one of those nasty dumper ones. The Channel islands provide so far not a single easy sheltered landing, and this one is one of the worst. Really HUGE monster are trashing down on the big swell – but there are also lulls. And as usual, those are to get out. But one has to be there in time…

We positioned and packed our kayaks on the higher higher ledge of the beach where we were also camping on, ready to slide them downhill into the surge zone. It was 1,5 hrs before high tide, and the surge reached occasionally already on the edge of or ledge.

Until the real nasty one came in…Jaime’s kayak got washed and banged hard into mine on a massive amount of water of a true rogue wave rushing uphill – and it washed our original campsites just behind us away…thank goodness were were already fully packed and all hatches closed, and were able to hold on to our kayaks. This could have been a sandy nasty water disaster with a broken kayak or two…!

I was already good to go, and a few waves after this monster one, I decided to push downhill with Jaime helping me. Not really sure what has happened, but I finally had to dive onto my kayak, bruised my lower fore arm hard, but could manage to get my bum in and to paddle straight after being washed sideways. I think I had made already more elegant starts…but finally all was safe out there on calm water, just my heavy adrenalin rush kept my body shaking for a while. And my fore arm a slight bit painful on the stretch. But I could paddle.

I prayed Jaime will be safe on his launch, important is he would not get into the rising but into the falling surge and push out on kind of a lull. It seems he managed the timing somehow, jumped over a smaller wave and was also safe out. Thank goodness!

Our diving boat was anchoring over night across our beach, and when they saw us both safe afloat, they drove up to us to present us with two plates of a hot cooked breakfast. Thanks for that, Jerry and Kelly! Very nice service 🙂

It was much more windy today than yesterday, and earlier windy than fore casted. We could easily ride along the rugged coast, and prepared ourselves for a rough crossing over to the third Channel Island. Whitecaps allover, it was blowing up to 20 knots in the channel! The wind was quartering-pushing, and we rather aimed to point a bit more to the north not to get blown off. It was after all a nice ride of 10 km, with few breakers washing from the side. When we finally could turn south east, some wonderful following surf waves got us flying along. Ever so nice! We both enjoyed my surfski-style kayak and wing paddle in following winds and seas, either me or Jaime was flying ahead, we never really competed alongside which was quite relaxing. We easily paddled 10+ km/h on this section!

The coast was slowly trending due east, which finally gave us calm seas and full wind shelter. Or did the wind go down fully now? Some nasty counter current messed up some small headlands. A bunch of white sandy beaches offered landing with more or less swell, but we liked to get to the on the satellite images most inviting and sheltered looking Coches Prietos Anchorage. I was just praying for no boat and no hikers and no rangers in there…it worked!

I had a lovely long swim and hair wash, but couldn’t get Jaime to also jump in. So nice, he missed something… Probably 20 degrees, sandy, and no strong surge or yucky plants or such. No animals on the beach either, they seem to be rare anyway here on this third Channel Island.

We went for a hike, and tried to shave a ripe cactus fig which worked more or less ok with Jaime’s fingers 🙂 The fruit was ripe, yummy sweet with bloody red flesh and small edible stones in it. If I’d had proper gloves, I’d have collected or plucked a few! The rocky-sandy path up the hill to the eastern side of the beach provided some nice views, but the top rocky spit was buried in bushes. A sailboat finally anchored in “our” cove, and even launched a sit-on-top kayak to explore the rocks.

It is full moon by now, and once more a bright clear night, even dry with barely any sea spray. We will sleep nicely – if the small fox won’t bother us again who already once tried to get into Jaime’s hatches… 🙂

by Freya at October 23, 2018 06:24 pm

October 22, 2018
Kajak, Foto,Friluftsliv

Första timmen i Stellar S18S

Måste vänja mig att paddla med surfski, blir lite tröttare än vanligt då jag är så ovan med att sitta fritt utan stöd för låren. 13 kg lätt surfski känns annorlunda när det blåser, var lite bångstyrigt att hantera.

Första riktiga paddlingen

by Bengt Larsson at October 22, 2018 08:14 pm

Freya Hoffmeister
Goddess of Love to the Seas

Mon 22/10-2018 Day 286

Pos: 33.9182,-120.0489
Loc: Santa Rosa Island
Acc: Hilleberg Allak tent
Dist: 27,0 km
Start: 08:00 End: 14:30

October night are long here in California…we have light from about 7am to 7pm only. We were dreading some strong wind today, but it did not happen. All day calm, maybe some cooler breeze of 12 knots, all following, and easy seas. Nothing really to suffer. We enjoyed the rigged coastline, and the many beaches still littered with marine mammals. On crab pot fishing boat stopped by us for a quick chat. “You have many sponsors!” “Did a boat drop you off here?” “No, I paddle around North America!” Silence. “Ok, have a nice day!” All-American conversation…

We remembered later we might have asked the fishing boat for some more fresh water…the next chance came very soon with a larger diving boat anchoring in our way. As our destination for the day was just around the corner and we had ample time today, we paddled up. The divers were just crawling out of the water for lunch. Some nice conversation, and we were invited up to join in! We didn’t say no…but captain Jerry liked to move the boat along while people were eating, and as we didn’t want to hitchhike and the kayaks were impossible to get dragged up the ship, we jumped back in our boats and paddled the mere mile they actually wanted only to move to find different diving grounds. We got back up, and had some nice pasta lunch and salad, plus got a goodies bag and fruit given. Thanks so much, Kelly and Jerry! Quite interesting to see a diver’s boat from inside! The guys were hunting for lobster and scallops and also fish. Not only diving for pleasure here…

We landed through another nasty dumper on a lovely animal-free beach in hot sunshine. No sign of the announced strong 23 knots wind…We decided to go for a longer hike to explore a bit of the island and to take ample pictures. The elephant seals colony next beach was or first destination. Lovely to watch those fat blubber guys with their round dark baby eyes, not being shy at all on us carefully approaching. We got a bunch of lovely shots!

We hiked a bit on a path along the coast, and found a large canyon with a trickle of fresh running water deep inside the canyon. We could have refilled our water bags here instead of on the diver’s boat! Some interesting large caves in the sand stone caught our attention. There must have been a LOT of water coming down this canyon to form those at some point! We climbed up and crawled down the canyon walls again to find ourselves on a rocky beach with a monster of a male elephant seal resting here just by himself, only one female lying on the beach ten meters before. Jaime took a shitload of shots and videos of the whole hike. Good job, my friend!

It got a bit chilly on the way back, me wearing only shorts, sandals and my pareo. But who cares in such beautiful nature!

The weather looks mellow the next days, but we decided to probably spend two more nights on the third island in this row, Santa Cruz Island. Civilization around Los Angeles is coming early enough! This wonderful wild life and nature reserve is too wonderful to rush through!

We would be happy about any host contact along the mainland who might be able to look after us for a night. If you know someone who knows someone…please let us know! We are hoping to get back into cell reception the next days.

by Freya at October 22, 2018 05:54 pm

Sun 21/10-2018 Day 285

Pos: 33.9967,-120.2391
Loc: Santa Rosa Island
Acc: Hilleberg Allak tent
Dist: 38,0 km
Start: 07:30 End: 15:35

We decided to leave our camp early, not too sure about rules and regulations here…I launched first, and just as Jaime was afloat, we saw a person coming down the dunes…

We were planning to round San Miguel Island clockwise today, and to cross over to Santa Rosa Island to find a likely animal-free beach behind Sand Point.

Heading back up to Harris Point where we crossed over against 15 knots wind in some lumpy reflecting waves was a bit of an effort, but worth! Like we already saw yesterday in the last day light, all sandy coves and even the rocks in between are littered with marine mammals. Amazing! What a grunting, barking and howling concert allover! We hung out quite a while for pictures and video, and watched their family life without disturbing their privacy. Both of us then enjoyed the bit of rough ride around Harris Point.

Along the next long sandy beach, we stayed offshore, and avoided another rough jutting out point. But the true westernmost edge was Point Bennett, littered with marine mammals of all kinds! Even if one would want to (what one is not allowed anyway), beach access would be hard as the beaches are literally overpopulated.

Behind Point Bennett, the sea was calmer in the light shelter of the western swell, and the quite strong nw wind was now pushing us friendly along. All beaches still packed with marine mammals. Wonderful to watch! We were gliding along, and easily crossed over to Santa Rosa island. We found an almost animal-free beach far behind Sand Point, and decided to land in a nasty dumper. Jaime went in first, I am actually very happy to have launching and landing gentleman-assistance now, and leave him happily the responsible job 🙂

I got a bit of a sand water wash inside the cockpit on landing, but all good. We found a wonderful beach spot almost under an overhanging rock, far away from any resting Elephant seals. Nice! We took some great pictures!

by Freya at October 22, 2018 05:10 pm

October 21, 2018

Björn Thomasson Design
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Öppet föredrag om kajaknavigation i Lysekil 27 oktober!

föredrag om kajaknavigation

På lördag föreläser jag om praktisk navigation i kajak och andra små farkoster – sådana där det inte finns plats för kartbord, passare, transportörer, papper och penna och annat som betraktas som minimiutrustning i vanliga navigationskurser.

Navigera med händerna!

Men det går utmärkt att sköta navigationen med händerna och de fem sinnena. Jag kommer att prata om kartor/sjökort och kompasser, om att bedöma fart, tid och avstånd, läsa tecken i naturen, titta, lyssna och lukta, bestämma positionen med pejling, att ta ut kurser, kompensera för vind och ström, hitta enslinjer, om att hitta vägen på natten eller i dimma – och att göra detta utan andra redskap än karta och kompass och utan att släppa paddeln med händerna.

Friluftsfrämjandet står för arrangemanget (i samarbeta med Studiefrämjandet) men alla är välkomna, medlem eller ej!

Plats: Campus Väst, Lysekil, Lysekil Rinkenäsgatan 2 (N 58° 27,4998'  E 11°42,0752' ;-)
Tid:    Lördag, 27 okt 2018, kl 15:00 (ca 1 timme plus frågestund)
Kostnad: 100 kr för medlemmar, 110 för icke-medlemmar (för mer info och anmälan, se Friluftsfrämjandets sajt)

Ett imponerande universalredskap!
Ett mångsidigt universalredskap!

by Björn Thomasson at October 21, 2018 07:52 pm
ute räknas. Ute med kajak räknas minst dubbelt :)

Stort gäng på Hjörneredssjön

Martin Svensson från Helsingborg skapade ett fb-evenemang och delade det på lite olika kajakgrupper. Kompispaddling i Hjörneredssjön, en positiv och inbjudande inbjudan inte så mycket måsten och krav. Han tänkte nog att nån handfull skulle nappa. Idag var det 26 (tror jag) som samlades i Hjörneredssjön och paddlade ihop, några ville paddla själva men de ... Läs mer...

Inlägget Stort gäng på Hjörneredssjön dök först upp på

by Erik Sjöstedt at October 21, 2018 07:12 pm

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

Got a lot of Gear?

I have a lot of gear. There is no denying it. Even though I work hard to have a minimalist lifestyle, I teach a lot of topics and all of them have associated gear. I do try and minimize how much I have, but facts are facts. I have a lot of gear. It has always been something I struggled with as a minimalist, here is how I handle it and how I organize my gear which is something a lot of people active in the outdoors struggle with. 

I teach kayaking, and have for a long time. I have what I need for teaching and expeditioning, and that equals a large duffel bag, two kayaks and two paddles. 

I teach sup as well, and a lot of my kayak gear crosses over. I use the same PFD for both instead of a more sup designed life vest. A lot of sup instructors use inflatable PFD’s and I choose not to. But I have two boards, two leashes and two paddles. 

I teach navigation, and have a plastic lidded bin that houses all the things I need for those classes. Maps, compasses, and accessories. I would probably thin out my map selection if I wasn’t teaching this, but it is good for me to have a lot of resources for my classes. For the same reason I have three different compasses, to show variations on a compass theme. I also keep things in the bin that I consider as falling into the realm of ‘signal’. This is strobe lights, chemical light sticks, personal locator beacon and such. I also keep headlamps in there. 

Another bin I keep is ‘med’, which includes first aid supplies that I am always using and resupplying my many first aid kits. I have a separate canvas bag that goes on WFA courses with me. But if it doesn’t fit in that bag it doesn’t go on a course. This includes teaching materials as well props, prizes for students, note books for me, and reference materials for when I need to look something up. 

I have two more bins that get a lot of use. ‘Stoves’ and ‘H20’. The first is self explanatory, everything stove related is in this bin. Both canister and liquid fuel. I own 6 stoves. This is a little excessive and Ill be selling one of them soon. I don’t generally accept free gear, but two of the stoves I got for free, specifically so I could use them when I teach. The third is a backup solely for expedition use. H20 Is everything water filter related. I own four water filters and again, two of them were free for teaching. 

The beauty of this system is when I am going to teach a class I just grab the appropriate bin, and whatever expendables I need. I never waste time digging for gear. Some things stay in my truck for months at a time. The entire summer all my sup gear and kayak gear is in the truck. I use it all most weekends. All I do is replace expendables and ‘surprise and delight’ - leave a comment if you don’t know what that is! - and maybe wash something or change something out. 

When I speak of expendables I mean things that get used up and have to be replaced before the next class. In my map and compass class everyone gets a printed map of where we are working so they can learn on a very specific map. They get to take notes on it, and do things like plotting a bearing. It also refers to stove fuel - I use a lot of stove fuel in the course of a year - as well as things I give away like water additives and power food. 

As fall approaches and I transition to land based classes I keep a backpack loaded with the gear I always carry. Rain layers, extra warmth layers for students - they frequently under dress -  a hydration reservoir and other things I have to bring along. This keeps it easy to grab my gear and go. 

What about my big stuff? Well, in my office I have what we refer to as the gear monolith. A large divided structure for storing gear. I has a small cubby for anything that needs to be charged and storage for batteries. There is a power strip in the cubby, and all my chargers are ready to go. Just plug it in and let it charge. When I need it, it will be ready to go. Another, larger cubby has all my tents and sleeping pads. Self inflating pads are stored unrolled with the valves open so that they are inflated all the time. The more a self inflating pad is inflated the faster it will inflate when you use it. Tents and other pads are stored in their bags in this cubby. 

There is a large bin that contains a lot of my camp kitchen gear, and some specific food related gear that I only use when I teach cooking classes. There is a large central cubby that holds my large paddling duffel in the off season. Dry bags are stored in a large dry bag, as is my dry suit. 

For most people I say store your sleeping bags in large bags so they can be loose, but my sleeping bags are sort of always in use. Several are in my sprinter which is my rolling office a lot of the time. Another is always on my bed. But if you are a normal person store them in the big cotton or mesh storage bags. 

I have another large bin that is just water bottles and water reservoirs that aren’t in use.

I was never a particularly organized person, but forcing myself to get organized has made a huge difference. I refuse to spend time looking for gear, and to combat that I spend a little time organizing my gear. 

I never store gear in an environment that isn’t temperature and humidity controlled. No attics, basements or crawl spaces. Never. 

The final part of my office organization is the three large dry erase boards on the walls. I use them for organization of projects I am working on, as well as things I need to do, both for teaching or other projects. These help keep me on track. 

The important thing is to find systems that help keep you organized, so you can spend more time playing in the outdoors. 

by paddlingOTAKU ( at October 21, 2018 04:58 pm

Biking and Hiking and Kayaking
Ramblings of an outdoor person trapped indoors.

John and Carole Bike the Allegheny River Trail

For Christmas 2017, Carole surprised me with a gift of a bicycling mini-vacation on the Allegheny River Trail in the Titusville/Franklin/Foxburg PA area, which is northeast of Pittsburgh.  The ART itself is 31 miles long from Titusville to Foxburg, but also connects to a several other trails.


We scheduled the trip for mid October, which is usually about the peak of fall foliage color in that area - but with the crazy weather this summer the only colors were green (leaves on the trees) and brown (leaves on the trail.) The weather also just changed from being unseasonably warm to being unseasonably cool, so we adjusted our plans a bit.

We decided to drive up to Somerset PA on Wednesday night, which would get us close enough to Franklin that we could arrive in time on Thursday to get some biking in. We went westbound on the Pennsylvania Turnpike - which was lucky for us, because there had been a horrific tractor trailer crash on the eastbound lanes which shut down that side of the Turnpike for over 70 miles between Breezewood and New Stanton. Our side was fine, but the other side was either miles-long backups or long stretches of no traffic at all.

We had a nice dinner at the Pine Grill in Somerset and the next morning took back roads up to Franklin PA - for some reason Carole made me take a very specific route to show me something:


We arrived at Franklin and checked into our very nice B&B, the Witherup House.


It was cloudy and about 43 degrees, so only one of us decided to bicycle that day, while the other decided to walk around the cute, cute, cute town of Franklin and lounge around the B&B. I am bound by a pre-nuptial agreement not to say that it was Carole who did the walking/lounging.


I biked from the B&B across the Allegheny River to the start of the Allegheny River Trail, which is a very nice paved surface with constant river views. I went about 5 miles south until the point where the ART intersects with the Sandy Creek Trail. Well, more like passes under the Sandy Creek Trail - there is a bridge that takes the old Sandy Creek Line over the ART and the  Allegheny River and in order to get up to the Sandy Creek Trail you have to take your bike up some pretty steep steps.

Sandy Creek Ramp

Even with the ramp on the side of the steps, that was harder than I thought it would be. From the Sandy Creek Bridge there was a nice view of the river, the surrounding hills and the smaller bridge I biked across on the ART to get to that point.

Sandy Creek Bridge

The Sandy Creek Trail is a beautiful paved path through the pine trees and hardwoods, slightly uphill all the way to Van, criss-crossing a river and taking you through one short tunnel.

My tunnel

The Sandy Creek Trail ended at Van and it was pretty much turn around and bike back to the B&B for a total of about 28 miles.

After I got back we drove up to see what Oil City and Titusville were like. No matter what way we turned, the signs would always say "Oil City - 7 miles" so we never got there but we did check out the "Caboose Motel" in Titusville where for $69 you can rent your own fully equipped motel room in an actual caboose.

That night we walked into town and had a great dinner at the Trails to Ales Brewery - great flat breads, soft pretzel with dipping sauce, arugula salad and interesting libations. I had an "Apple Pie" ale brewed locally and Carole had a flight of 4 different flavors of mojitos.

The next day was supposed to be warmer and no slacking off from biking was allowed. Since the innkeepers were away, they had left us a gift certificate for breakfast at the Amazing Foods Cafe in Franklin where oatmeal and waffles were consumed in large quantities. We walked back and stopped to see the awesome Tiffany stained glass windows at the St. John's Presbyterian Church, which were back-lit by the morning sun.

Stained glass

We then drove south to Emlenton to bike a section of the Allegheny River Trail that included going through two tunnels.


The Rockland Tunnel is about 2800 feet long and has water cascading down from the top of the tunnel at the southern end. We walked the bikes around the water and turned on the lights - since the tunnel has a "dog leg" turn a few hundred feet in, you can not see the other end of the tunnel for a while and was very dark.

The next tunnel was even longer - the Kennerdell Tunnel is 3400 feet long but dry - but also has a dogleg turn and was pitch black most of the way through. Both tunnels were built in the early 1900s and  bisected loops in the river to save the railroad many miles of track.

A few miles past the Kennerdell Tunnel we turned around and headed back for a total round trip of 25 miles. From there we drove a few miles to Foxburg, for some fancy chocolates and ice cream and then on to Grove City PA to stay at the Terra Nova B&B and have a great meal of home made pasta at Nonni's Corner Trattoria, which is now our second favorite Italian restaurant after Pasta Plus in Laurel MD.

The next morning (after a huge breakfast at the Terra Nova) we made the 5 hour drive back home, stopping at the Distillery Lane Ciderworks in Jefferson MD to pick some apples, apple cider vinegar and hard apple cider from this small apple orchard and distillery.

by John P. at October 21, 2018 01:16 am

October 20, 2018

Freya Hoffmeister
Goddess of Love to the Seas

Sat 20/10-2018 Day 284

Pos: 34.0465,-120.3913
Loc: San Miguel Island
Acc: Hilleberg Allak tent
Dist: 51,5 km
Start 08:05 End: 18:45

Jaime was happy for a drone flight over my easy launch this morning. Strange feeling, to have the camera man turning his back to me (to see the display of his phone better n bright sunlight) while an UFO is buzzing over my head like a nasty huge insect. It doesn’t take much to be tempted to try to hit it with my paddle and to chase it away…but I am actually very happy about Jaime is taking so much footage with his many cameras out of his play store :-)! So much looking forward what comes out when edited! Thanks, Jaime!

The conditions for the crossing are looking good today, calmish seas and low wind. Off we go! A bunch of dolphins were escorting us again and again, nice! After I played my music for a while, it was Jaime’s turn to chose from his play list – and his turn singing 🙂

Two fishing boat came pretty close to us, but that was it as excitement on the crossing. We had to cover up against the sun, and changed position towards each other that not only one was to look into the sun all the time. Jaime paddles with sunglasses, I am happy with my wide black visor. I could convince him today to use my spare wing – and had to work a bit harder to keep up 🙂

When we were nearing San Miguel Island, weird dark-copper rock formations formed a wide headland. Amazing…and amazing the small beaches in between the rocks which were littered with marine mammals, both with sea lions and elephants seals. What a wild life! But what a pity we arrived so late we had to hurry along…we might paddle around the island tomorrow.

We turned into the natural Cuyler Harbor Bay, the only anchorage and human beach access area. Five fishing boats and a sailboat were already anchoring, when we arrived in last light to find a marine-mammal free beach to camp. I was meanwhile pretty chilly in my wet shirt with only the wind breaker, set up my tent pretty quickly and had a shower in the bright moonlight. Glad we have enough fresh water!

Jaime is cooking as usual, while I am writing this, checking satellite images, charts and weather to prepare our mutual decision for the next day’s plan. Good job sharing! thanks for joining me, Jaime! A pleasure to have you along!

by Freya at October 20, 2018 06:23 pm


Brittsommar i Blekinge

Jovisst valde vi rätt solskenshelg för en paddlingsrunda.

Efter ett fredagsärende i Karlshamn åkte vi till badplatsen i Kuggeboda. Riktigt högt vatten som nästan dolde den lilla stenbryggan. Lite extra höstkänsla infann sig när vi fick syn på badbryggans sektioner som låg prydligt staplade på stranden. När vi kommit i kajakerna var det nästan mörkt, vattnet var blankt och det blev en riktigt mysig gungande paddling i dyningarna mot Ljungskär.

På väg mot….

… Ljungskär i Listerbys lilla skärgård.

Lördag morgon, massor av dagg. Snart morgondopp och frukost! 🙂



Utanför Arpös sydspets.

Vi hittade spår av får, men det finns fler ”spår” på bilden…. titta närmare. Vi såg det först när vi kom hem…

… ser ni nu då? Huuhhh!

Det är gott att kisa.

CC rekar övernattningsmöjligheter på Birkeskär öster om Arpökalven.

Postfikaslummer på Arpö Kalv.


That’s all folks! 🙂

by Christian Cronberg at October 20, 2018 04:35 pm

October 19, 2018

Freya Hoffmeister
Goddess of Love to the Seas

Fri 19/10-2018 Day 283

Pos: 34.4518,-120.4190
Loc: Government Point
Acc: Hilleberg Allak tent
Dist: 25,2 km
Start 09:10 End: 14:40

Our launching choice this morning was not down the concrete block, but rather the small beach facing south. Big sets were rolling in every now and then, but also moderate sets one could wait out, and long lulls. We saw good chances to get out safe. But no way we could have landed here yesterday!

One impressive massive set was rolling in, but I was not quite ready yet to go. We opted to wait out that lucky long lull and waited for one more BIG set. It took a few ten minutes and four sets of moderate waves where I got washed off my feet while holding the kayak on the front when finally another impressive monster set was rolling in. If you are caught in that, you are trashed and dead.

We were waiting to let it calm down, I got afloat, neared the shelter of a big rock, waited two more lower breakers, saw a lull and hurried out.

I thought I was already free when a massive water wall piled up just before me…FUCK! But only half fuck, as I was just about able to turn right to ride over a lower area and to avoid either getting massively trashed or jumping over the crest. Close shave…but I was out. I kept on paddling out for a while, just in case…

Jaime managed also to time it right, and with only a few splashes in his face he rode out safely to meet me. Another wonderful hot sunny day on the water was waiting for us! We stripped down to the shirts, and both felt our sit bones were sore from paddling hard yesterday. So a bit more chatting than working out today!

Cape Conception was lurking as a mayor corner to pass where conditions will change drastically to the better. It was pretty calm around the light house headland today, so no big problems. Jaime was as usual busy taking videos and quality pics. I am quite happy about his efforts and keen to see the edited results! Thanks for your documentation of our section of my trip, Jaime!

We decided to keep the day short and to paddle over to the Channel Islands tomorrow, in favor for our sore bums and a bit of beach downtime this afternoon. We deserve it! I had my first long swim with hair wash. Water temperatures on the reef here are around friendly 20 degrees with the sun shining still hot. Lovely!

Dinner was a yummy lobster tail on grains in garlic sauce, freshly caught by Monica, Leroy and Ron yesterday. Thanks for that and your landing help! I noticed too late we have cell reception this afternoon, so I am doing some office work later into the night instead of relaxing early…

Tomorrow, we will cross over to the Channel Islands, see what is to discover there!

by Freya at October 19, 2018 07:26 pm

The Ikkatsu Project
In the Service of the Ocean


The past couple of months have been a constant flurry of chores and activity. I feel like a break.

One of the things I loved about being at the lighthouse this summer was that it was completely off the communications grid. No phone, no email, no internet, no problem. I carried my phone with me for use as a camera or as a timepiece, but I didn’t miss the pings and croaks of incoming texts or telemarketer’s phone calls.

I can’t get to Cape Decision at the moment but I can still unplug. I’m heading to the Cascadia Surfrider Summit this weekend at Lake Crescent, then driving on out to the Hoh, to get lost for a few days. When I come back, the task list will get spun up again and between planning for the Tacoma Shoreline Survey, preparing to host Green Drinks in November and completing grant applications, there will be no chance to get off the grid again for a while.

Which is why I’m going now.

by Ken Campbell at October 19, 2018 01:40 pm

Piragüismo San Fernando


Hoy día de test, aprovechando que ha venido Paz Bey para dar algunas reseñas técnicas.

La próxima semana tenemos la primera prueba en el Club Alcazar.

Todavía puedes apuntarte a nuestro club Estamos los Lunes, miércoles y viernes de 4 a 6 tarde. Tlf 66165254
La imagen puede contener: una o varias personas, océano, cielo, exterior, agua y naturaleza

by Andres Barba ( at October 19, 2018 01:59 pm

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

Torsdagspadling Stavøya

Torsdagspadling! Nå var det blitt så sent på året at den ble lagt til Øksnes og bare en time etter jeg slutter på jobb, for å få litt tid før det mørkner. Alexia, Hilde Gunn og Eirik ble med denne gangen. Det er nok fare for at dette ble årets siste sånn «midt» i uka.

Vi satte ut ved kystlagsnaustene, der er det ganske fint. Planen var å padle bortover mot Stavholmen og kanskje innom Reinøya på returen.

Som sagt så gjort i første omgang, i hvert fall. Det var kjølig i dag, merket vi. Jeg hadde rett og slett litt i minste laget ull på meg. Spesielt på føttene, der var jeg litt kald. Men den hvite melisen i fjellene hadde jo krøpet ganske langt ned, det var ikke mange plussgradene i dag.

Men flott var det! Nydelige farger, og dekorative skyer. Dette var litt annet enn denne gråværspadlinga.

Smines og fjellene ovenfor til venstre, Skogsøya til høyre. I midten ser vi noe av Vestbygda i Øksnes.

Alexia i leid klubbkajakk padler forbi Staven. Nå nærmer vi oss holmene som kan snirkles innimellom.

Fargene ble i grunnen finere og finere. Det var så nydelig at tempo var veldig lavt, her gjaldt det jo å nyte turen og få sugd inn de flotte fargene i størst mulig grad, på en måte.

Passering av torskehotell litt lenger bort.

Padler i solnedgang er jo en klassiker.

Sett på litt nærmere hold. Kan det bli så mye flottere enn dette? Kule skyer!

Da vi kom til stranda gikk vi i land for en liten beinstrekk og snack.

Det var blitt oktober. For noen av oss betyr det at det må rulles. Her sitter jeg klar.

Det forsvant bra med lys på den lille stunden vi var på land, godt vi hadde lysene på Sommarøya å padle etter.

Lanterne på dekk er jo bra for å bli sett, men hjelper ikke så mye for å se hvor hen man padler og hvor man skal. Turleders lanterne lå for øvrig i bilen, viste det seg etter turen. Ja det var forresten jeg som var turleder. Minuspoeng.

Våt padler etter ei halv rulle ved ilandstigning. Var dessverre akkurat litt for sein med kamera til mer underholdende bilde.

Kjempefin tur! Takk for turen Alexia, Hilde Gunn og Eirik! Dette må vi gjøre flere ganger. Høstturer er fine.

by Miamaria Padlemia ( at October 19, 2018 11:35 am

October 18, 2018

Pouls kajakblog
Jeg hedder Poul, og jeg er kajakoholiker! Denne blog - der mest er min egen dagbog over mit "kajakliv" - handler om mine kajakture og det udstyr jeg benytter mig af.

Tur til Avnø og Knudshoved Odde med Havkajakroerne

Jeg havde inviteret NKC medlemmer og medlemmer af Havkajakroerne til weekendtur til Avnø og Odden. Mødetid var klokken 12 ved Svinø Havn, men da jeg kom til havnene en lille times tid før var der allerede en lille flok kajakroere der var ved at rigge til.
Jeg fik budt velkommen og fortalt om parkering og vores grund ved parkeringspladsen. Jeg fik selv hurtigt pakket Chesapeaken - der var masser af plads. Og heldigvis, for selv om det er en overnatning eller en ugetur, så har jeg næsten det samme med. Det er kun mængden af mad der er mindre.
Jan og Jens kom kort efter roende fra Karrebæksminde, og så var vi ti der var klar til tur. Jan roede forrest og viste vej, og jeg lukkede og slukkede som bagerste mand. Det var heldigvis en nogenlunde homogen gruppe af roere, så det var ikke svært at holde sammen ind i Avnø Fjord. Her blev vi mødt af sælerne, og flere af gæsterne var behørigt imponerede over de nysgerrige dyr.

Der var et par familier ved shelterne, men det betød intet, da vi alle selv havde telte med. Jeg valgte i det gode vejr at overnatte i tarp. Senere dukkede både nogle vandrere fra Præstø en en flok håndboldspillere fra Lov op. Det gav en hyggelig aften i Nokkeskoven.
Det var Trangia unlimited da vi lavede aftesmad - selv lavede jeg Wienergryde fra Beauvais med ekstra bønner. Det smagte godt, og samtlige bønner virkede dagen efter,
Det lykkedes at være klar til maden nogenlunde samtidig, så vi havde et meget sammensat middagsbord. De andre familier havde fået lavet for meget græskarsuppe og for mange pølser, som de bød på - alt røg ned i de sultne kajakroere mens solen lige så stille gik ned.
Inden mørket helt lukkede sig over Nokkeskoven fik jeg de sidste ting på plads under min nyindkøbte tarp. Jeg sov fint, da jeg efter et par timer røg i posen.
Dagen efter bød på en flot solopgang 
og dejlig morgenmad - på billedet er det Niels morgentallerken
Efter morgenmaden gik vi alle en tur op til Naturcentret hvor der er en lille udstilling om områdets historie som gammel flyveplads og om det dyreliv der nu er på og omkring stedet.
Vi skulle dog videre, og efter sammenpakning af teltene gik turen mod spidsen af Knudshoved Odde. Halvdelen af gruppen bar over ved Draget, mens resten blev på nordsiden hvor der var læ for den vind der var blæst op.
Ved frokosttid gik vi land tæt på spidsen af odden. Her nød vi frokosten og gik en tur på spidsen. Alle var behørigt imponerede over den specielle natur - men vejret var da også i den grad med os.
Inden turen gik tilbage mod Svinø var vi lige et par stykker der skulle have udsigten fra vandsiden.
Tilbage i Svinø viste GPS'en at jeg havde roet 30 km - se alle billederne her

by Pouls kajakblog ( at October 18, 2018 10:18 pm

Chesapeake 17 debut

Fredag skulle den Chesapeake 17 jeg de sidste måneder har restaureret have sin debut på vandet. Og lad det være sagt med det samme - det gik godt. Kajakken opførte sig fint på vandet - lidt mere vind og bølge havde været rart for lidt mere test, men det må vente.
 Turen gik rundt om Gavnø med en kort pause på Enø. Undervejs roede jeg det meste af vejen uden finne, og den store kajak var rimelig kursstabil og reagerede fint på kantning og styretag. Med finnen nede var den meget kursstabil og næsten ikke til at dreje. Den er jo oprindelig også konstruereret til ikke at have finne.

Udesigten fra det rummelige cockpit kan der ikke klages over. Slutbilledet viser den rummelige Chesapeake ved siden af den noget mindre Black Pearl. Egentlig supplerer de hinanden fint. Perlen til dagture, sjov og leg og Chesapeaken til langtur med oppakning.
Det blev til 16 km

by Pouls kajakblog ( at October 18, 2018 08:28 pm

Freya Hoffmeister
Goddess of Love to the Seas

Thu 18/10-2018 Day 282

Pos: 34.5547,-120.6100
Loc: behind Vandenberg
Acc: Hilleberg Allak tent
Dist: 45,1 km
Start 09:45 End: 17:45

We were dreading the launch this morning, as it was higher swell forecasted than on the landing day, which was already quite nasty with a heavy dumper to time. Yesterday, it was about 1,5 m seas, today two meters. And the crashing dumper looked accordingly. There are lulls in between, with a long swell period, but one has to get to the water’s edge with the heavy loaded kayak.
Jaime volunteered to launch last, and I was quite happy about that as he is a bit stronger than me to punch out, just in case. But this one was actually rather a everything or nothing launch, no soup zone upfront to time it out, and if you get the big shower, the least thing is to get washed high up the beach – if nothing worse…

We held my kayak close to the highest surge end. When we saw it getting smaller and we thought a lull would come, we slowly worked it down, holding the kayak on both ends. It looked calm soon, we gave it a push and I jumped on. I got my feet in, but opted to leave the deck still open in favor to push out quick and hard, in the hope to stay within the lull. One can hope – but it doesn’t always happen…a larger dumper was piling up, and I couldn’t avoid to get heavily showered and whipped on the back deck with the open cockpit. FUCK! This was exactly how it should not have happened…I managed to stay upright and straight, and tried to punch forward anyway, despite being washed back almost up the beach. But with a half flooded cockpit is no big speed to make. The lull was over, the next monster piled up already, but at least I was able to let it break upfront me. On more try, but I had to let go and back-sides-surfed up the beach where I jumped out and Jaime caught with me the now fully flooded kayak.
We emptied the boat, urned it around to et rid of the rest of the water, and back to get ready to launch again. But again FUCK! – I saw the strap of my back band was broken…must have hapened when I got smashed on the back deck…so we were dragging the kayak out of the danger zone, and I got my repair kit out. Replacing the belt on one side was quickly done, but when I thought I better replace also the other side, the screw refused to get lose. Ok…the solution was we screwed another belt into another already existing hole a further back, just in case…
The second launch attempt was success full, we opted to get me in already with the closed cockpit, and Jaime managed to push me in on kind of a real lull.

Now it was his turn…at some point he decided to jump in, got the cockpit closed, but the breaker upfront didn’t let him get out…four or five more breakers came which he manged to let go and not get trashed. But he got washed sideways in some kind of a soup zone, without turning the kayak too much sideways. A tricky job without the rudder being already deployed…good job, man! Finally, the dumper was small enough to punch out, and we were both happy to be safely afloat! What a launch! Two meter seas here on a steep beach is nothing for the faint-hearted…

We stripped down to the shirts like yesterday, both air and water feel warm enough to do so. The wind was low, the sea surface calm, and we happily paddled along on a light following wind and long ocean swell. Sure I got my music out to power us on! Jaime liked it, as he loves music and to sing himself. We flew along, wonderful paddling in surfski-like kayaks! Jaime preferred to keep his own paddle instead of using my spare wing…thank goodness 🙂

We were passing the military zone of Vandenberg, no landing allowed here. Not that we had the desire to do so…we stayed far out, and cut across the bays. Not much to see or to play with on a long open beach besides the wonderful ride! It breezed up a bit in the afternoon, but it was was not before about 4 km before our headland when it blew quite strong of the mountains. Intimidating spray came of the monster breaker crests, and it was time to get my wind breaker on. Soon Jaime followed, and also our PFD’s. Rounding the last corner was quite an effort and bit scary to see the monsters rolling in which we gave a wide berth.

But not too wide…paddling into the wind to finally find the sheltered harbor was tough job. I laid on my front deck punching into the wind, but still made only 2 km/h until we both finally reached the shelter of the harbor. But then – third time FUCK! today – no launching ramp here as expected…just a steep concrete block with walls reaching high up…the beach close by had rolling fat surf and no beach property to camp on…at least there was a ladder at the lee side of the concrete block.

There were some people up the block fishing, and we asked them if they were happy to help us getting out here via the ladder. Sure – but they thought our kayaks were empty and light weight…

I leashed my bow line to the ladder, Jaime came parallel. The best bet was now I held our pack to the ladder while we both were swaying back and forth in the swell. Jaime reached to my front hatch and unloaded bag after bag which I tied to a rope the guys upstairs let down to us. Thanks so much for helping! A few more loads, and Jaime moved to the stern hatch to do the same job. I got my tow belt around my waist, hooked it to the bow line and everything together was long enough to let me climb up with still having connection to my kayak. I climbed on the natural rocks behind the concrete block, the guys upstairs threw me the tow belt and I managed to raise my kayak out of the water, piece by piece and off the swell, and later with the help of the guys, it got worked up the rocks. SAFE!

Now it was Jaime’s turn…I climbed down the ladder, reached to the bow hatch, and managed to unload the compartment in the swell by reaching bag after bag to Jaime which he tied to the rope from upstairs. Same with the back hatch, and everything got hauled up in a few batches. Occasionally I could rest my grip while sitting my bum half on the kayak when the swell was up. Finally also this kayak was mostly unloaded, and Jaime climbed also up, while being leashed to the kayak with his tow belt. We opted now to try a different approach to get it out of the water. On the front side of the concrete block was a rubber bumper area, and with a rope on both ends and four strong people, we raised it about two meters up the wall to safety. THANK GOODNESS! No damages or losses on lives or gear…thanks so much to Monica, Leroy and Ron to be such great helpers!

We could even have a fresh water rinse on some water hose before we put up tents on a sandy spot with picnic tables and fire pits near the parking lot. All good now! Just dead tired, physically and mentally from a stressful launch and landing, plus a pleasantly hard surf-and fly-along paddle to music all day!

How to get back on the water tomorrow on the same two meters swell? We’ll see…

by Freya at October 18, 2018 07:18 pm
Triathlon, cycling, sea kayaking, swimming and life in the Scottish Highlands

October Challenge #1: Resurrect Kit

This is utterly amazing stuff.  Nikwax TX.Direct wash in re-waterproofing.  I know the internet is full of "unbelievable, brilliant products", but this one really is.

Remember how your waterproof jacket shed showers when it was new?  The rain 'beaded' on the surface and rolled off.

However, now the garment probably 'wets-out' because the DWR, Durable Water Repellent finish has gone.

This is the way to put it back.  It has to be done every year or so but it hugely extends the life of waterproofs.

In a throw-away society, it's great to have well-designed outdoor gear that lasts and functions year after year.  For example, both my jackets, worn by my brother-in-law and me to run the OMM in 2006, are still in regular hill use, both for fun and filming work.  In fact, I reproofed both (again)) today.

TGO Article from 2006 - Both jackets are still in regular hill use
Trouble is, it's a bit of a faff.  One of those early-winter jobs you'd like to put off, like sweeping the chimney.  (Yeah, I have that to do too).  I could have called this challenge "Stop procrastinating".

So here's my method.  First, buy the right Nikwax product for the kit you're going to do.  If that kit is dirty, you will need to wash it first, and the Nikwax cleaning product is ideal.  Then read and understand the instructions, so if anything in my method contradicts their recommendations, you can decide what to do.  Don't follow blindly.

Select the jackets you want to re-proof, up to six in one go, and clean the dirty ones.  I don't use the washing machine method because I don't want your machine full of a weird chemical.  And boy is it weird - you'll see!
Production line
Place a plastic box next to the kitchen sink, and fill that box with 12L of hand-warm water and three caps of Nikwax.  You're going to set up a production line.  Soak in the box for ten minutes, rinse in the sink, carry outside to drip dry.

You'll agitate the jacket in the Nikwax by hand, and it's when you remove your hand that you'll realise how weird this chemical is.  Your hand comes out of the water... dry.  The water beads on your skin like on a new rain jacket.  Oh, and your skin feels weirdly soft.

One significant point.  This puts the DWR finish on the outside and inside of the garment.  It might feel a bit weird at first and need a couple of washes to settle.  If it does feel odd, put it in the washing machine on a rinse cycle.

Of course, this chemical might irritate sensitive skin.  I wouldn't put it on a shirt or any item in direct contact with my skin.

October has been a strange month for us.  Liz has been away looking after a poorly Mum for the first half.

While she's been in English sun, here in NW Scotland the weather has been utterly dire.

It has been a challenge just to stay motivated to exercise, almost all of which has been on the turbo in our home gym.

This was another job I'd been putting off doing, but it certainly pays dividends later in the year.  Take it from someone who wears a waterproof almost every day!

by Simon Willis ( at October 18, 2018 12:47 pm

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

Småpadling ved Sommarøya

Gråvær. Vind. Det får så være, jeg ville padle. Eirik ville være med. Vinden sto ganske rett inn der han bor, så vi tok turen ned der for det blir pålandsvind. Et stykke å gå fra bilen - men tralle funker jo fint. Med to kajakker i høyden til og med, viste det seg.

En nøyere studie av dette bildet viser, tror jeg, at jeg har tatt bilde av gapahuken ved stranda. Det er nok litt mindre høstfarger her nå, jeg er litt på etterskudd med bloggen.

Litt vind, men det meldte mer, så vi tok det litt med ro. Før eller siden kunne det meldte været komme midt i fleisen, det må man jo være forberedt på. Jeg benyttet anledningen til å tyne ferskingen litt.

Her har han fått beskjed om å snu for å se hvor kjapt han klarer det begge veier.

Det gikk jo irriterende fint. Bare for det fikk han prøve en kameratredning. Gikk fint det også.

Jeg lurer litt på hva denne båten egentlig lå her for. Den gikk fram og tilbake i saaakte fart. Tror lett vi kunne padlet om kapp med den.

Oppdrettsanlegg. Kjedelig, og det lå egentlig midt i veien. De gjør jo ofte det, hvordan nå det kan ha seg.

Pause. På stranda. Mat og drikke.

Det var nokså grått i dag, men vi så nå faktisk toppen av fjellene. Så det kunne vært vere.

Klar for ny runde.

Vinden hadde tatt seg opp, og kom nå mer i rosser mens den tidligere var ganske jevn og forutsigbar.

Medsjø er gøy!

Tok noen ruller også. Ikke perfekt, men kom opp på alle så det er godkjent. Da funka den.

by Miamaria Padlemia ( at October 18, 2018 09:57 am

Freya Hoffmeister
Goddess of Love to the Seas

Wed 17/10-2018 Day 281

Pos: 34.8994,-120.6454
Loc: Point Sal
Acc: Hilleberg Allak tent
Dist: 42,0 km
Start 09:45 End: 17:45

First day back on the water! New section, new paddling partner: Jaime Sharp.
I had met Jaime only once before for half an hour with friends in a restaurant in Victoria, before we met again coaching on the Lumpy Water Symposium just the weekend before we started our trip. It was kind of a blind date for paddling together, as all we knew from each other was via Facebook and mutual friends. Jaime has some vast (kayaking) expedition experiences as a guide and on some own trips of all kinds of paddling styles, plus he is also an accomplished surf and white water and big waves kayaker. For sea kayaking, his greatest achievement was the first circumnavigation of Svalbard with two other paddlers, encountering polar bears en masse. I am surely keen to learn from his experiences for my own northern section of the trip, and will have not to worry about him on the water at all. Very relaxing!

We got a lift from the symposium down to the bay area with Kim Grandfield, and were hosted by him and his wife Charly in their fancy large house for a night. Russ Wilson with his “wife” dotty picked us up from there, and drove us back to his house is Pas Robles where I also finished the last southern section of my trip in May. Thanks to all for their help!

We could food shop already with Kim, and had our kit sorted before Russ arrived. He continued our shopping tour by driving us around to any kind of place we thought we needed to go. All set finally this morning on the beach! Jaime was playing a bit around with his variation of video and camera toys including a drone to catch some nice pics of our the start. Thanks for that! Good pics and footage are always appreciated! I am glad I have for now a skilfull video and camera person paddling wih me!

All kit was amazingly as usually fitting in our kayaks, ad off we were in to another calm and sunny Californian morning! A fellow paddler named John Buenaventura me us at the beach to say farewell, but now he had to go to work…ok! We met him an hour later, paddling with two clients on sit on tops through a wonderful arch! Life could be worse…

We did the same, stayed for a while between some nice caves and arches, and squeezed our kayaks through wherever possible without touching. Pelicans and cormorans decorated nicely the rocks in the background, they are not shy at all here! Jaime took a lot of footage and pics in lovely sunshine! A bunch of dolphins, some sea otters and seals added tothe peaceful scenery. Nice!

The last section was some not too exciting sandy long coast, and we both got into a good paddling rhythm in the rising swell. I opted to already launch in Kokatat surfskin pants and lightweight jacket, the water is much warmer already tan expected! We both finally paddled all day only in a shirt and with the PFD on the back deck. Wonderful southern California weather in October!

he swell was generally relatively low today, but we were still a bit concerned about our landing…it turned out to be quite a nasty dumper on a not too steep fore shore. But I timed it right going in first with Jaime warning me from big sets coming in, I really didn’t want another broken kayak! He followed in before I had my heavy loaded kayak pulled up fully and out of the danger zone. But all good!

We enjoyed a short but beautiful beach evening before the sun set already around 7 pm. Thanks for cooking a nice meal, Jaime! We’re both dead tired now after a relatively uneventful, but wonderful start of our mutual eight days together!

by Freya at October 18, 2018 04:06 am

October 17, 2018


Via Verde del Cidacos. La Rioja

Escapada a La Rioja para disfrutar de las ruedas, en esta ocasión conociendo el entorno del río Cidacos aprovechando la vía verde que transcurre junto una una buena parte de su cauce. Este recorrido sin dificultad (demasiado urbanizado para mi gusto) tiene una longitud de 34 km entre Calahorra y Arnedillo. 

En este caso la salida fue de Arnedillo, desnivel negativo todo el tiempo hasta el momento de iniciar el regreso, que se convierte en positivo (siempre acabamos cuesta arriba a la vuelta) aunque es muy suave. Sin embargo hay una buena razón para tener la base en este pueblo, las piscinas naturales de aguas termales que tiene el río, que son un auténtico placer cuando hace fresco fuera del agua.


Que bien está que en los pueblos tengamos fuentes para el bidón eh..?

Hay un par de túneles, bastante largos, pero con autoiluminación.

 Típico fantasma de túnel...

El entorno otoñal con las hojas doradas..

No digo nada del puente....

Los pueblos , muy bonitos.

Pues nada, hasta la próxima..

by Jose Bello ( at October 17, 2018 11:18 pm
ute räknas. Ute med kajak räknas minst dubbelt :)

Kullaberg runt och över i oktobervärme

Igår tog vi en sväng till Kullaberg. Sjösatte vid Tussans badplats i Arild och paddlade utåt. Efter 300m såg vi en tumlare, eller kanske var det två, som visade fenan ett flertal gånger. Vilken bra start på en paddeltur. Kan inte påminna oss om att vi sett Tumlare så långt i tidigare. Svag medvind och ... Läs mer...

Inlägget Kullaberg runt och över i oktobervärme dök först upp på

by Erik Sjöstedt at October 17, 2018 07:58 pm

October 16, 2018

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

October 16th - Discovery Island (#59)

I went for an early morning paddle with Dan, joining Paulo out at Cadboro Point, and went for a trip around the Islands. Paulo and Dan have seen the wolf recently, but I have not. I saw lots of familiar birds: bald eagle, great blue heron, black oystercatcher, black turnstone, yellow legs (not sure which!), harlequin duck, marbled murrelet as well as a steller  sea lion and many harbour seals.
click to enlarge
15 km, YTD 465 km
(note: I will be lucky to reach 500 km this year, let alone 1000!)

by Mike J ( at October 16, 2018 08:19 pm

October 6th - Campania Island (#58)

On my second trip we managed to get out for a lovely morning paddle in McMicking Inlet on Campania Island. Conditions were beautiful and we were joined by eagles and seals. In the zoomed in picture, note the "bog forest" behind the rim of conifers at the waters edge. Lots of cool plants there like Labrador tea, clubmoss, juniper and sundew!
zoomed out a bit - click to enlarge
zoomed in - click to enlarge

really zoomed out to show the whole area - click to enlarge
5 km, YTD 450 km

by Mike J ( at October 16, 2018 08:10 pm

September 27th - Khutze Inlet (#57)

While I was on a Maple Leaf Adventures trip in the Great Bear Rainforest this fall I took some guests on a short paddle up the Khutze Inlet Estuary. The tide was quite low, so we could not get up too far! Later in the day we had great views of grizzly bears.
close up - click to enlarge

zoomed out a bit - click to enlarge
6 km, YTD 445 km

by Mike J ( at October 16, 2018 08:04 pm

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

Next steps - sailing

The last chapter of my book is called Next Steps.

It is a common phrase in the outdoor education world, and we use it to talk about what students should do next to advance their knowledge in a certain area. With the long term goal to be proficiency in an outdoor skill.

I am usually the person giving people their next steps, but today I am thinking about my next steps, in particular when it comes to sailing. Despite growing up on my fathers power boat, and spending most of my adult life working on the water in kayaks and for the last five years, stand up paddle boards, I am a complete novice when it comes to sailing.

I have already done a fair amount of reading, but I need to get out there, and spend time in boats. The amazing thing that has been occurring since my last post about sailing is the number of people who have offered up their time, experience and excitement to help me.

My friend Lisa - who I consider my SUP mentor - divulged that she got her start on the water as a sailor, I would very much like to sail with her, she is a great educator, and an amazing person.

My employer just hired a young woman who is a competitive sailor and US Sailing Instructor, I have already hit her up for some information, and hope to convince her to take me out on the water.

Beth, who you may know from the training chapter in my book as well as taking part in the AGAP trip, just brought a Laser sailboat back from he mountains, it needs some work but I am excited to help her get it on the water.

Finally, I hear through the grapevine that another friend, Ron, who moved away but is now coming back, learned to sail while he was gone.

These are all great opportunities and will make for fun experiences, and will be a boon to learning how to do this.

Part of this is my network of friends, most are interested in the outdoors, and jump at the chance to help people learn a new skill. The joy that I get out of this is new skills. Something I love.

On my last check in with my boss on the outdoor education side of things, he asked why I continue to teach. I told him a big part of it was selfishness. I love learning new things in the outdoors, and no matter how many times I have taught something, I always learn something new from new students. That is what I get out of it. This is a whole new world that I get to play in, and bring my experience from many other venues to play in this arena. Super exciting.

So, hey, follow along on this journey. I plan on doing more video through this process, and want to share it with you. Subscribe to the Adventure Otaku youtube channel, content is coming. In the meantime, Instagram is the pest place to follow this next adventure.

by paddlingOTAKU ( at October 16, 2018 03:54 pm

October 15, 2018
ute räknas. Ute med kajak räknas minst dubbelt :)

Solnedgångspaddling på Skälderviken

Efter ännu en ovanligt oktobervarm dag stack vi ner till Skälderviken för lite solnedgångspaddling. Riktigt gött i det sneda kvällsljuset. Blev en kvällsmacka i kajaken i solnedgången och en paddelrunda. Inte alls trångt med varken kajaker eller båtar men såg i alla fall tre båtar och två fiskare. Grymt!

Inlägget Solnedgångspaddling på Skälderviken dök först upp på

by Erik Sjöstedt at October 15, 2018 07:05 pm

Mountain and Sea Scotland
Hillwalking and Sea Kayaking in Scotland

The way back from Carn Bhac

Climbing onto the broad ridge which leads up to Carn Bhac (cairn of the peat banks) a wide view opens up to the Perthshire hills, with Beinn a'Ghlo prominent.

The first top reached is called Geal Charn - the white cairn - and although it didn't appear so under lowering cloud, the quartzite rock here appears very pale under most conditions.

From Geal Charn there's a gun-barrel view down the remarkably straight trench of Glen Tilt, one of the great through routes of the Highlands, and part of the path from Blair Atholl to Braemar.

It's easy going and pleasant walking from Geal Charn to the main summit of Carn Bhac, which is the highest point of the dome of scree in this image.

At the summit cairn the view towards the main Cairngorms ws rapidly disappearing under cloud and what looked suspiciously like falling snow.  As the wind was in the north this lot would be heading my way, so I didn't hang around too long.

My way back from Carn Bhac was via the usual route of ascent.  This has little to commend it other than being a logical route if you want to include the nearby Munro of Beinn Iutharn Mhor (which is, in my view, better climbed separately anyway).  In descent this "normal" route is a long drag of wet moor and peat bog - I came this way the first time I climbed Carn Bhac but the "back" route I'd used is a much more pleasant way up.  This is looking back at the hill from about half way down.

Eventually the route meets an estate track along a stony ridge with good views into the head of Glen Ey, a pleasant glen for a low level walk with a ruined shooting lodge in the upper reaches.

Arriving back at Inverey, a late blink of warm sunlight lit up the nearby hillsides - but it didn't last as the rain was starting just as I reached the car.  Carn Bhac isn't the most popular of Munros, perhaps because it's stuck a bit in the background, and perhaps a little because of the normal route of ascent.  It does have splendid isolation though, and some great views if you're lucky enough to have a clear day.  My route was 22 kilometres with about 650m/2130ft of ascent; the route is all on OS Landranger sheet 43 (Braemar and Blair Atholl). 

by Ian Johnston ( at October 15, 2018 08:03 pm

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

Hurricane Michael

About a month ago, central North Carolina went a little crazy preparing for Hurricane Florence. While Florence did severe damage tot he coast, it never really found its way to where I live in central North Carolina.

But this week we got hit - with little warning! - by Hurricane Michael. We got hit on Thursday around 11 am. We lost our power around 2:30pm. The storm was gone by 6:00pm, but the damage still remains. We got our power back on Saturday night around 9pm, which was surprising. We expected it to take longer. We were just getting into the grove of the silence. The AC and Fan kicking on and off. The sound of our ceiling fan when we are trying to go to sleep. And the never ending sound of our commercial refrigerator - you don't realize how loud a commercial refrigerator is until you put one in your kitchen. Comment below if you want to know why we went that route.

While it was inconvenient to not have power, it also wasn't that bad. We got lucky, as we are surrounded by large trees, and many fell, but nothing hit our house. I posted video of the storm at its worst on instagram.

Two things struck me during this exercise of no electricity.

First, as I mentioned, the silence. People have a hard time with silence. It is the reason your friend calls you when they are driving home from work. A lot of people have a hard time embracing the quiet, because when it is quiet, when there are no distractions, you hear the voice in your head. As a culture, we are bad at quieting that voice in our head and it makes people very uncomfortable. Part of why I like long kayak trips is there is plenty of time to quiet that voice in your head. It takes practice, and you can call it meditation, or deep breathing exercises or whatever you want. But it is a good skill to have, the ability to keep your wits when all is quiet. We have so many distractions to day that keep us from practicing that skill, and it really does scare people. Try this, go to have lunch with a friend, and put your phone on the table, face down. Don't look at it or pick it up during the meal. Just connect with the person across from you. You may find this difficult, but give it a shot, and invite the person opposite you to do the same.

I am really enjoying the new screen time app that is included with iOS 12. It gives me the ability to see where I am spending my time on my phone or my tablet. It is sort of a device separation detector. As I look at screen time now, I can see on Friday my usage ballooned, because I couldn't use my iPad or desktop. But when I look at the app on my iPad it was way down. I average about 45 minutes a day on my phone - which sounds like a lot, but I think it probably isn't. But on Friday it was right at around 2 hours.

Okay, the second thing that struck me was the storm itself. On Monday I looked at the weather radar and the Michael was a tropical storm and a poorly organized one at that. Meaning it didn't have a very pronounced circular motion. It just looked like a large storm, and I didn't think it would be that bad. On Tuesday I wasn't too surprised to see it was a Category 1 hurricane, but when it made land fall the next day it was a powerful category 4 hurricane. So how did a poorly formed tropical storm become a powerful cat 4 in two days? How did it do this in a location where storms rarely form, the Gulf of Mexico (most hurricanes form off the coast of Africa, and take their time moving slowly across the Atlantic picking up strength.) It is also surprising that the storm did this in October, the end of the hurricane season?

Well, the answer to all these questions is abnormally warm water. Warm water is what feeds hurricanes. The warmer the water, the more evaporation there is, the more moisture they carry. And while the wind from a hurricane is bad, it is the water that does the damage. As bad as the damage was it would have been far worse if it hadn't been going so fast. If this storm had lingered the way Florence did, thousands would be dead. They are actually thinking of changing the saffir-simpson hurricane scale, to reflect water content as well as wind. Because wind levels only tell part of the story. Honestly, we dodged a bullet with Michael. It could have been much worse.

But, abnormally warm water? Why? Simple. Take a guess? Climate change. The only way for a storm to form that fast, in October is the abnormally warm water from the changes to our climate.
Hurricane Michael, was the exclamation point added to last weeks IPCC report. Unless we take dramatic action to curtail greenhouses gases in the next 12 years, by 2040, storms like Michael will seem small. Ask someone who lives on the coast of Florida what they think of storms like Michael being small.

Climate change isn't a hoax, or a Chinese scam, or a ploy by money hungry scientists. It is a dire warning that this planet is done with us. If we don't make dramatic changes now, life as you know it will be very different in 20 years. Cities will be underwater, food shortages will be common - because  it will be harder to grow crops. (oh, and Michael killed millions of pigs, and hundreds of millions of chickens. it is starting already) Both of which will lead to devastating wars.

So when you put your phone down over breakfast, talk to your friend about climate change and what they are going to do about it. Because it is going to come down to all of us doing something. We can all do a little today, or a lot tomorrow. It is your call.

by paddlingOTAKU ( at October 15, 2018 11:28 am
ute räknas. Ute med kajak räknas minst dubbelt :)

Dropracks – nytt fälla-ner-takräcke

Dropracks verkar vara ett nytt norskt företag inom takräcken. De har produkter där räckena fälls ner på sidan av bilen. Ser klart smidigt ut att kunna lasta/lossa vid sidan av bilen istället för uppe på taket. Nån liknande variant hade varit smidigt för stugbilen Winzent. Ja även på den vanliga lägre bilen 🙂  

Inlägget Dropracks – nytt fälla-ner-takräcke dök först upp på

by Erik Sjöstedt at October 15, 2018 07:04 am

October 14, 2018

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

Historic Photo: Sault St. Marie Poling Rapids

From this Ebay seller comes a steroview photo of a man poling up the rapids near Sault Ste. Marie. Just behind the poler is a paddle resting on the thwarts. The stout paddle shaft has a short, flattened bobble style grip ending.

Title: 7992 Breasting rapids at Sault Ste. Marie with an Indian guide 
Underwood & Underwood, New York, London, Toronto, Ottawa

Unfortunately, there is no date associated with the photo description, but the photographic company,
Underwood & Underwood, were major publishers of stereoscopic photos until 1920.

by Murat ( at October 14, 2018 02:29 pm
ute räknas. Ute med kajak räknas minst dubbelt :)

Hur går det med varv och 360gradersbilderna

Har fått frågan om hur gick det egentligen med de där varvbilderna? Vi köpte ju en Ricoh 360-graderskamera för ett tag sedan och någon tyckte de sett lite lite sådana bilder. Det går bra, blir rätt roliga bilder. Vi har i princip bara publicerat de bilderna på Google Maps. Dels för att de passar bra ... Läs mer...

Inlägget Hur går det med varv och 360gradersbilderna dök först upp på

by Erik Sjöstedt at October 14, 2018 11:11 am

October 13, 2018

The Ikkatsu Project
In the Service of the Ocean


Half of the samples from the South Kuiu Cleanup have been analyzed and without giving too much away, plastic has been found in each one.

It is a strange feeling, staring through a dissecting scope at a screen on top of a grid, sliding it one way and then another, following the grid lines for reference, and then coming across a piece of plastic. Such clear water, to look at it, taken from pristine Alaskan inlets and beaches. No visible particles of any kind (except maybe a few grains of sand in one or two of the samples), the water looks perfectly translucent, pure.

But then you see it. A thread of microscopic fiber, sitting atop the screen, looking like a hair, almost. Many of them are black but some are red, almost beautiful against the shimmering pearl background. Some you can’t see until you turn out the lights and switch on the UV. Those ones glow like alien worms, their natural color too hard to pick out without resorting to a trick of the light. But there they are.

I’m hoping to get through the other half of the samples by next week. Results should be ready the week after that. Stay tuned.

by Ken Campbell at October 13, 2018 06:48 pm

Kollbergs Kajakblogg
Nynäshamn / Stockholm / Sweden

Lunchpaddling med Samuel

Tog bilen ut till Ankarudden. Gick i land och lunchade utanför Krokskär. Härlig höstpaddling...

by Kenneth Kollberg ( at October 13, 2018 03:00 pm

October 12, 2018

October 11, 2018

Björn Thomasson Design
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Några dagar brittsommar...

Löddenäs vid 5-tiden 10 oktober 2018

Så det blev det några dagar brittsommar även i år. Shorts och t-tröja under dagen. Gassigt varmt ännu vid 5-tiden och kav lugnt igår eftermiddag när bilden togs från fågeltornet vid Löddenäs, Lödde Ås mynning mellan Bjärred och Vikhög. Ute i den grunda bukten hade vattentemperaturen skuttat upp till 14-15 grader. Annars har det varit kring 12 grader senaste veckan.

Brittsommar är en period med sommarvärme under första halvan av oktober (kopplat till birgittadagen  7/10), som skall ha föregåtts av en kylig period med nattfrost i delar av landet. Såtillvida är det en riktig brittsommar vi har här i år.

Begreppet brittsommar finns bara i Sverige och Finland. I Danmark och Norge lånar man istället det anglosaxiska indiansommar, som dock inte är kopplat tiill något speciellt datum.

Tång, vissnad vass, ingen horisont
Gammal tång från stormen förra veckan och vissnad vass nere vid stranden men ingen synlig horisont

by Björn Thomasson at October 11, 2018 07:52 pm

October 10, 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!)

A couple more pictures from Sunday -

Just a couple more from Sunday that didn't quite work with the last post, where I wanted the pictures to just be a super scenic slideshow from a super scenic day. But here are the first brants of Fall, plus a water skier. 
We've still been having some warm and muggy weather here in October - but the birds of the bay know it's Fall. First brants of the season, resting in the Paerdegat Basin after their long flight from their nesting grounds up north. There are just a few so far but give them a little more time and we'll be back to this - you'll hear ducks and gulls but the noise that goes on through the whole clip is hundreds of brants all talking to each other. Hrrrnk hrrrnk hrrrnk!

And this was a first for me - I've never seen anybody water skiing in Jamaica Bay before, but there they go, right through the big fleet of boats that are anchored for fishing off of Floyd Bennett Field. Zoooom! Mind the lines! This is actually funny - the towing boat actually looks like it's set up for fishing, but why not get a little waterskiing in along the way? Excellent multi-tasking!

by (bonnie) at October 10, 2018 08:04 pm

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

Foggy Morning on the South Platte River below Denver

Recently, I photographed several water diversion dams on the Poudre and South Platte Rivers. The most rewarding experience was a foggy morning on the South Platte just downstream of the 104th Street (Elaine T. Valente Open Space). See pictures below. […]

by Marek at October 10, 2018 06:49 pm

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

Historic Paddle Photo: Matt Bernard - Pikwàkanagàn FN Bark Canoe and Paddle

Illustrated Forest and Outdoors (January 1947) from the Canadian Forestry Association featured a 1 page article showcasing the bark canoe building of Matt Bernard of Golden Lake, Ontario  (now known as Algonquins of Pikwakanagan First Nation).

The canoe and image look similar to the photo in the online exhibit Canoe Builders of Pikwàkanagàn where a better photo of the paddle profile is shown.

Location: Pikwakanagan Indian Reserve, Golden Lake, Ontario

by Murat ( at October 10, 2018 10:14 am

October 09, 2018
Triathlon, cycling, sea kayaking, swimming and life in the Scottish Highlands

September Challenge #2: People

Visitors on Sanna Beach
Some of this year's challenges I've had to go looking for.  Others have just found me.  September has been one of those months.

It started great with a campervan trip to Benbecula, North Uist and South Uist.  I spent two days as part of the team filming The Heb Adventure race, then Liz and I bumbled about having some adventures of our own.

Then we had visitors.

Our border terrier Maggie had been sent Christmas presents from Germany from another couple with a border terrier and we became internet pen-pals.

They rented a holiday cottage near us and I volunteered to show them around, spending a day driving a big loop, with two ferries, showing them Mull and Ardnamurchan.  Watching me drive on our single-track roads was helpful for when they had to go it alone.  They came for lunch and tea couple of times, and the dogs didn't tear strips off each other.  It was quite a busy week.

Then we were visitors.  We headed to Skye to stay with our friends for a couple of nights with the aim of going cycling.  Storm Ali had different ideas and after just one day we scuttled off home.

Then we had more visitors.  Our great friends Bill & Sukie were heading to the Isle of Muck and had invited us to join them.  Unfortunately, neither of us were at home when they arrived because I was taking Liz to the Caledonian Sleeper train.  Her Mother is ill and she's headed south to take help care of her.  I left a key for Bill & Sukie, and instructions on how to simply cook the dinner I'd made for them, which we all ate when I got back from the railway station.

Physical challenges, like the ones which make up most of this yr60 list, have been relatively few this month.  But they're not as important as the subject of this article.  People.

by Simon Willis ( at October 09, 2018 06:27 pm

Filming The Historic First Swim Across The Minch

On the 8th July 2018 Colleen Blair swam into history.

You can watch it sixteen minutes into this episode of The Adventure Show on the BBC iPlayer.

Others had tried and failed to swim The Minch, from the Isle of Lewis to the Scottish mainland.

The 'Little Minch' between Harris and Skye had been swam, but the 'Big Minch' had proven too far (further than the English Channel), too cold, and too full of stinging lions mane jellyfish.

Colleen swam it in 18 hours, 46 minutes 28 seconds.  She followed British Long Distance Swimming Association rules, wearing no wetsuit and watched by two official observers (her Dad and Ian) and support boat Harvest Moon piloted by Jody.

I swam with Colleen and showed her the footage
He normally fishes for prawns off Gairloch.  Renowned kayaker Brian Wilson spent all that time in an inflatable double kayak paddling alongside Colleen, handing her energy drinks and food as needed.

Norman, Colleen and Colin
There was also second team with two wetsuit swimmers, Norman and Colin.  They had their own kayaker Will plus support boat, also attempting to cross the Minch.  They were organised together but for BLDSA rules the two swims had to be separate.

I was with them for four days, crossing to Lewis on the ferry, waiting a day for the weather to improve, then bouncing around on Colleen's support boat for about 25 hours.  It was hard for me, goodness knows what it was like for Colleen!

We could have made a twenty minute feature from the footage, but there would never be space in the programme for that.  But it does make a compelling feature - if you want to see what determination looks like, watch this.

It didn't work out so well for the second team of wetsuit swimmers but as I was several miles away from them alongside Colleen I can't be certain what happened.  Different people have different views on that swim.  But it seems most people are happy with what was screened.

by Simon Willis ( at October 09, 2018 06:26 pm

Flattery, Ironman. Now Spend Money.

It appears the business called "Ironman" is trying to flatter me into entering more of their competitions.

Their All World Athlete programme is awarded to competitors who clock up the most points in a year.  Or at their letter puts it, "the top 10% of your age group".

Except I'm not.  Their own online records show it.  So what's going on?

I only finished two races in 2017 (the season on which it's based) and I did not do well at either, Staffordshire and Edinburgh.  At Pula, Croatia I ditched the run due to injury and recorded a DNF.  I am absolutely not in the top 10% of my age group.  There's more.

"I hope your 2018 season brings you excitement in your training and competing...", says a letter dated 30 August 2018.  Which just arrived, in October, when the Northern Hemisphere 2018 season is finished!

The facts are wrong. The timing is wrong.  Unless I've missed something, this seems an attempt to flatter me into buying AWA branded gear or entering Ironman branded races, which are good but relatively expensive.  Not this time, thanks.  The flattery has backfired.  In fact, it all seems a bit naff.

I've done it, I've got that t-shirt.  But I don't wear it.

by Simon Willis ( at October 09, 2018 06:26 pm

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


Mi tabla de once ejercicios sencillos para estirar y calentar antes de hacer kayak y evitar lesiones, o reducir cansancio. leer mas

October 09, 2018 04:42 pm


Tre settimane a Minorca!

Torno a Minorca per la quinta volta!
Dopo il viaggio invernale con Mauro del 2009, sono stata invitata a partecipare ancora una volta alle Jornadas de Menorca en kayak, dopo avere già preso parte alle edizioni del 2011, 2014, 2015 e 2017: a distanza di 10 anni, non mi stanco mai di tornare nella più bella delle Isole Baleari, è come un'amica che per quanto frequenti hai sempre una gran voglia di rivedere. Eccomi quindi di nuovo in partenza per Minorca: domani prendo il volo da Milano a Mahon e per tre lunghe settimane calcherò la sabbia dell'isola.
Stavolta vado sola: Mauro resta a seguire i lavori di ristrutturazione della nuova casa. Ma so già che non sarò sola per niente: il prossimo fine settimana sbarca sull'isola una folta delegazione sarda ed il gruppo di "aficionados" delle Jornadas è sempre molto ampio...

Quest'anno mi hanno invitata a tenere vari corsi della British Canoeing: iniziamo con tre giorni dedicati al corso 3 stelle e, dopo la settimana in kayak per tentare il periplo dell'isola (sempre una grande incognita per via dei forti venti che l'avvolgono da ogni direzione!), sarà la volta del corso teorico di navigazione costiera e di ben due corsi del vecchio 4 stelle, ora denominato in maniera più appropriata "Moderate water leader award".
Non sto più nella pelle per l'attesa di ritrovare vecchie e nuovi amici e per partecipare alle attività delle Jornadas, che anche quest'anno sono piene di novità e di grandi attrattive, come l'anteprima del film di Ray Puig sul suo viaggio in solitaria in Papua!
Se non avete ancora mai visitato Minorca, non fatevi attendere troppo: l'isola è un incanto!

by Tatiana Cappucci ( at October 09, 2018 11:00 am

October 08, 2018

The Ikkatsu Project
In the Service of the Ocean

You There. Yes, you.

Consider this a call for volunteers. Whether you can spare an hour or two of kayak time or taking a short beach walk with the family is more your style, there is a place for you on the Tacoma Shoreline Survey, November 10th. It’s a chance to help get a real-time look at Tacoma’s beaches and intertidal areas, to count up the debris we find and to clean it up.

It’s going to take people to make it work. It won’t take too much of your time, but the impact will be huge. If you’d like to be involved, please contact me directly at:

*protected email*

More info will be splashed all over this space soon. Get in touch!

by Ken Campbell at October 08, 2018 10:55 pm

Voltant pel mar

Tras 7 años... Volvemos a escribir...

Hola a todos,

Han pasado ya 7 años desde mi último post en el blog.
Siete años donde ha pasado de todo y donde no ha pasado nada. Como supongo, a cualquiera de los que estáis ahí cierto?

En estos 7 años, trabajando un poquito por allí y un poquito por allá, perseverando en la idea que me rondaba en la cabeza, recibiendo la ayuda de los que me quieren, estoy consolidando el proyecto de empresa VOLTANT PEL MAR!

En la temporada que acaba de empezar, hemos incluído toda una serie de actividades especiales que iremos realizando en lo que queda de 2018 y durante los seis primeros meses del año 2019. Intentaremos acompañarlas con algún texto, algún pensamiento, alguna foto y algún que otro video...

¿Que actividades especiales nos esperan?

En setiembre de 2018, ya tuvimos una primera semana en Euskadi. Creo que será cita obligatoria cada año, a partir de ahora. Aunque... tras lo vivido allá, creo que volveré a escaparme en diciembre!

Por el momento, en octubre de 2018, nos vamos a Mallorca. Con la grandísima compañía de Pep Juaneda que nos hará de anfitrión!

En Noviembre, del 1 al 4, iremos a Portugal, Oporto, Esposende donde nos esperan los amigos de SIPRE, Nazaré para ver las olas gigantes, quizá incluso Lisboa...

En Diciembre, del 6 al 9, fijaremos nuestra base en el Cap de Creus y desde allá... haremos cositas! :)

Luego, nos tomaremos un respiro hasta el mes de Abril de 2019 donde iremos en varias ocasiones a disfrutar de Mont-rebei.
El plato fuerte llega el mes de Mayo de 2019, donde nos escaparemos a conocer, caminar, navegar y por qué no... volar! por tierras escocesas!

Luego ya, por último, iremos de visita por tierras gallegas a navegar por Cies, Ons y lo que nos proponga nuestro compañero en aquellas tierras, Berto!

Bien, volvemos a escribir. Toca empezar...

Un saludo a todos.


by Voltant Pel Mar ( at October 08, 2018 08:00 pm
Lightweight canoe and kayak travel

How to pick a Northstar Solo Canoe

northstar solo canoe on Devil Track Lake

So here’s a challenge – when Northstar already makes a bunch of really great solo canoes, and then keeps adding new ones, how do you pick a Northstar Solo canoe that is perfect for you?  Two things are key – figuring out your “paddling profile” and understanding what characteristics makes a particular Northstar a good match for that profile.

Back in 2008, PaddlingLight published How to pick a Bell Solo canoe.  I really liked the Q&A format devised to help paddlers build their paddling profile and the scorecard that mapped the answers to a recommended Bell Canoe.

What’s the connection between Bell and Northstar?  Ted Bell sold Bell Canoes in 2006, took an 8 year break, and then, in 2014, started Northstar Canoes with expedition paddler Bear Paulson as General Manager.  Northstar continues the Bell tradition, making excellent tandem and efficient solo canoes with distinctive shouldered tumblehome on flared hulls. The flared hulls add seaworthiness and the tumblehome keeps the paddling stations narrow.

The article, How to pick a Northstar Solo Canoe, updates the old article and reflects the new Northstar models and includes a new “Why this boat” column that highlights how a specific boat design supports a particular paddling profile.  Hopefully the added info will help you make even more confident decisions when picking your boat.

How to pick a Northstar Solo Canoe Questionnaire

To start, answer these 10 questions to build your profile:

  1. Where will I use the canoe?
    a. River only b. Some River and Lake c. Lakes only
  2. How often will I use the canoe to flat-water tour out of it?
    a. Never b. Once or twice a year c. That’s all I do
  3. Will I use the canoe for mild whitewater?
    a.Yes, often b. Only now and then c. Moving water? No way.
  4. Do I want to use the canoe for Canadian style or freestyle paddling?
    a. Yes, in competition b. I like to now and then c. Huh? What’s that*.
  5. Will I race with the canoe?
    a. Never. b. Once a year. c. Yes, and often.
  6. Does this statement describe you? I just want a canoe to explore the small local lake.
    a. Yes, exactly b. Now and then. c. No, big lakes only.
  7. Do you like to go straight or like a canoe that turns?
    a. A canoe must turn! b. I like to turn easily, but go straight also. c. I like to go straight and fast.
  8. Do I kneel when paddling?
    a.Yes, all the time b. When the water gets rough c. No.
  9. Does this statement describe you? I like to have the fastest canoe when I’m out with my friends.
    a. Not at all b. I like to be able to keep up c. I love to be first and fastest
  10. How many Northstar Solo Canoes would you like to own?
    a.Two b. Just one c. At least three

Next, here are the points for each answer – add up the points that correspond to your answers to get your score.  Be careful, the values for “a”, “b” and “c” change for several of the questions:

(1) a.1 b.2 c.3.  (2) a.1 b.2 c.3,  (3) a.1 b.2 c.3.  (4) a.1 b.2 c.3.  (5) a.0 b.1 c.3.

(6) a.0 b.1 c.2.  (7) a.0 b.1 c.3.  (8) a.0 b.1 c.3.  (9) a.0 b.1 c.3.  (10) a.1 b.2 c.3

From left to right:  The “Points” and the contents of the “Why” column (retitled as “Your Profile”) haven’t changed from the original.  The “Canoe Model” column now reflects the Northstar product line.  Following the original article’s lead, the Northstar ADK (a “pak” boat) and the Rob Roy (a decked canoe), are not included.   Finally, you’ll see the added “Why this boat” column.

How to pick a Northstar Solo Canoe Chart

Use the total you calculated above to find your Northstar Solo Canoe.

Points Your Profile Northstar Model Why this boat
4-10 You paddle moving water and want a canoe that is going to respond to your every stroke. You may tour, but find that you’d rather have a responsive canoe than one that goes straight, and you’re willing to sacrifice a little speed because of this. If you’re going to own two Northstars’, this will be one of them. Phoenix




FIrebird (smaller sibling – new in 2019)

Classic “river” boat for paddling where rocks and fast water needing quick responses are the biggest challenges.


Design includes significant symmetric rocker for maneuverability and more depth in bow and stern for a dryer ride and more lift.  The flared hull characteristic of Northstar’s provides strong secondary stability, helping keep the paddler upright in challenging conditions.

11-14 You could go either way. If you find yourself on rivers more, pick a Phoenix or Firebird.  If you find yourself on lakes more then pick a Northwind Solo or its smaller sibling, the Trillium. Phoenix/Firebird or Northwind Solo/Trillium 15-19 You do a little of everything, but don’t see yourself on whitewater. You want an efficient canoe, that will keep pace with your friends. You want one that will turn, but also go straight easily, and you like to tour on flat water. If you’re only going to own one Northstar, this is a great compromise canoe. Northwind Solo




Trillium (smaller sibling)

Excellent balance between “river” and “lake” boat.


Design includes asymmetric rocker – more in the bow (2.5”, same as the Phoenix) to help turn, but lower (1.5”) in the stern to improve tracking. A lower (depth/sheer) overall profile (matching the Magic) reduces sail area, which also helps tracking, but makes for a wetter ride in “bouncy” conditions..  The combination provides good maneuverability for quicker water while still helping manage the wind on slower rivers and the big lakes.

20-23 You could go either way. If you want to track well but still able to turn with some good technique, chose the Northwind Solo or Trillium, or if you want to go straight and fast pick a Magic. Northwind Solo/Trillium or Magic 24-31 You paddle almost exclusively on lakes and you like to cover a lot of ground while you’re out there. You want a fast canoe that holds it’s heading even if it makes it harder to turn. If you’re going to own two Northstar canoes, this will be one of them. Magic True lake boat optimized for paddling where wind and distance are the biggest challenges.


Low profile (depth/sheer) reduces “sail area” – the amount of surface the wind pushes against.  Minimal stern rocker (0.75 inches) enhances tracking, and the slightly greater bow rocker (1.5 inches) combined with the flared hull’s solid secondary stability allows the skilled paddler to turn with sufficient ease.


Keep in mind that the profile is an important starting point – it helps you define and articulate how you’re going to use the boat, gives you an idea of what kind of design characteristics you should be looking for, and which Northstar solos canoes have those characteristics.  But, as said in the original article:

This quiz is still no substitute for paddling (different boats) and picking which one you like best, but it should narrow you down to only two of the three models. With this knowledge head to your local store and find a sales person who actually asks you a ton of questions about where you will be using the canoe and your canoeing style. Get their recommendations, and then spring the results of this quiz on him or her. My guess is that they will be the same.

Hope this helps.  Feel free to contact me with questions.

* FYI:  Canadian style involves paddling a solo canoe while kneeling off center.  The canoe is heeled up on its side, shortening the waterline, making it more maneuverable, and placing the paddler closer to the water for more control and more effective strokes.  Freestyle canoeing involves performing a choreographed routine, generally to music – think “Dancing with canoes”.

The post How to pick a Northstar Solo Canoe appeared first on You can leave a comment by clicking here: How to pick a Northstar Solo Canoe.

by Keith Attenborough at October 08, 2018 03:51 pm

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

A big Weekend, both good and bad.

It was a big weekend, that took a long time to make happen. I spent Saturday taking an introduction to sailing course in Oriental, NC. My wife and myself spent four hours sailing a beautiful Catalina 42 with a highly experienced captain.

We had been trying to make this happen since last April, and the plan changed dramatically over that course of time. If you have read my latest book you know the dramatic plan I laid out in it. A new challenge for myself, and my wife that would take years to make happen. I am still not sure we can pull it off, but I am at least confident in the next steps. We both enjoyed our time on the boat, and with the process of sailing, and now want to start learning the finer details of moving a boat with nothing more than wind.

I was amazed how much of my kayaking experience translated to a sailing environment. Things like reading and understanding wind. The feel of a boat in a following sea, and the effects of the shape of the keep on tracking. All had direct comparisons in the sailing world.

Unfortunately I wasn't surprised with the people of the sailing community. I have to stress, everyone was very nice and welcoming, but it is a community with very little diversity, and it is a sport that - at least in my small exposure to it - seems designed to be exclusionary. Besides the entry cost of sailing - though if you look at youtube you will see that there are ways around that - the thing that struck me the most was the amount of jargon that was thrown around and that people - even novices - are expected to know it. Keep in mind that I have worked the past 20 years (almost) in the outdoors. I was a skilled climber and mountaineer. I teach navigation and stand up paddling. I am a very skilled and highly experienced kayaker, having paddled thousands of miles in remote locations and extreme conditions. None of that prepared me for the amount of vocabulary and terminology that is used even amongst people who have admitted that they know nothing, which was how we described ourselves.

As an outdoor educator I can say that isn't a good way to welcome people to a sport. Now, admittedly, if you are teaching myself (a long time outdoor educator) and my wife (a tenured professor in higher ed) we are harsh critics of people who teach. To a point where it may be unfair. Our captain was a highly skilled sailor, there is no question. But having a great deal of skill is not my first criteria when I am hiring an educator. It is having the ability to break down concepts, simply, and make them easy to understand. With this, I was not impressed.

But enough of my complaining, I had a great time, and look forward to taking my next steps into sailing. I was super excited that after posting video on instagram I had a number of close friends who work in the outdoors fess up that they got started in sailing and would love to take me out, and were happy to help pass on knowledge. I am excited to have something new to learn.

Now here is the bad. We were in Oriental, NC about 30 miles north of where Hurricane Florence made landfall a bit less than 3 weeks ago. The coast of North Carolina is still in pretty bad shape. Though spirits are high, and peoples energy is positive. All the campgrounds were closed due to damage and what hotels were open were full of displaced people and people working to repair the damage. We got to spend our second night in a Wal-mart parking lot, which is really no fun. We planned on spending Saturday night at the coast again, but couldn't find place to stay, and started back early. We were almost in Raleigh before we found a place to stay.

Then, Sunday morning we were greeted by the IPCC report that the environment is getting worse more rapidly than the worst estimates and we have a mere 12 years to make dramatic changes across all parts of our society - power, fuel, housing, farming - to keep our temperature rise below 1.5 degrees centigrade. We have already risen a full degree. I was not surprised to see this story fall off the front page of CNN less than 24 hours later. It seems with all the chaos in the world, no one cares that we are destroying our world. The current US administration simply doesn't care, which leaves it up to us to either change the administration or make the changes to our society ourselves. The whole thing is pretty depressing.

So, that is where I am. Excited for new challenges and dreading the next 5 years, waiting to see the impact of our neglect coming home to bite us. Head over to instagram to see the video and the most amazing photo of storm damage imaginable.

Stick around here to see what else happens! A lot is brewing!

by paddlingOTAKU ( at October 08, 2018 02:21 pm


Fun Run....

El Neutrón 50 vuelve a casa para una puesta a punto. 

Como siempre, Javier me trata de manera exquisita. Muchos pensarán que es lo normal, pues al fin y al cabo Fun Run es mi patrocinador en lo referente a la embarcación. Y efectivamente es lo "normal", pero no solo conmigo. Cualquier kayak que salga de Fun Run  tiene asegurado un servicio posventa de lujo.

Me gusta cuidar el material, de hecho, a veces hasta me llaman exagerado. Pero una vez en el agua, el kayak es para navegar, y uno como este para meterse en líos (cosa que también me gusta mucho) por lo que es inevitable que con el uso intensivo que doy a las embarcaciones de vez en cuando haya que darles un poco de cariño y un repaso.... las rocas son muy duras.

Dejo al pequeño, junto a nuevos hermanos en proceso, que es artesanal y muy tecnológico a la vez, por difícil que pueda parecer. La mente inquieta de Javier, además del bagaje de conocimiento de la marca, asegura que estos kayaks siempre estén a la última tanto en material y proceso de fabricación, como en diseño y adecuación del producto a las necesidades del palista (en ello estamos).

Y nos vamos, dejando al alma máter de Fun Run trabajando en otro proyecto estrella, el trineo del viento, para cuya construcción ha sido necesario diseñar maquinaria específica. La que más me ha llamado la atención es la dedicada al trenzado de las fibras de carbono sobre los travesaños del trineo. Esta tecnología propia va a servir para el desarrollo de nuevos productos, ..... a lo mejor, palas groenlandesas en carbono, quien sabe..!

by Jose Bello ( at October 08, 2018 01:59 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!)

10 mile paddle, 1 day short of 3 years since mastectomy

Sailors returning from racing just as TQ and I were setting up

Had to get out on the water today. 10 miles, paddling hard, just me and TQ (first time it was just us in a long time). Tomorrow is the 3 year anniversary of my mastectomy, and then there was chemo and reconstruction surgery in the spring of 2016. The 1st summer, I gave myself a pass. Summer 2017, I didn't get out as much as I wanted to and finished the summer frustrated, feeling slow, easily winded, and still very mistrustful of the reconstructed side. I've done better with water time in summer 2018 though, and between today and turning in a pretty satisfactory performance last week at the Tony P Challenge (post to come), I'm actually feeling like I'm finally getting it back together.

Click on any photo for a slide show view. It was cloudy when we got to the club but it turned into a beautiful afternoon. 

by (bonnie) at October 08, 2018 02:43 am

October 07, 2018
ute räknas. Ute med kajak räknas minst dubbelt :)

Rönneåflytet 2018

Idag blev det en tur med ÄSSS på Rönneå, från Höja in till hamnen i Skälderviken. Gött att bara flyta med medströms i ån även om det inte var så mycket fart på ån 😉 Riktigt fint oktoberväder med sol och skapligt med höstfärger. Goa snack längs med vägen och vid fikapausen vid Vita räck. ... Läs mer...

Inlägget Rönneåflytet 2018 dök först upp på

by Erik Sjöstedt at October 07, 2018 07:38 pm

October 06, 2018

Piragüismo San Fernando


Hoy Paz Bey Garcia inicia el curso de Nivel 3 de Entrenador de Piragüismo que se esta realizando en el Centro de Visitantes de los Toruños en El Puerto de Santa Maria. La primera clase la imparte Miguel Garcia entrenador de Cristian Toro y Samuel Craviotto entre otros medallistas españoles.

by Andres Barba ( at October 06, 2018 04:16 pm

Björn Thomasson Design
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Ny kajak på gång!

Ny Panthera 2

Jag har fått flera propåer senaste månaderna om att rita en tvåmanskajak på Panthera-konceptet. Önskemålen har oftast handlat om en snabb långturskajak med lite "modernare" eller "trendigare" utseende än de mer klassiska Alert/2, Thule/2 och Nomad/2. Efter att ha sugit på den karamellen några veckor började jag för en vecka sedan skissa på möjliga versioner och känner mig mycket nöjd med hur det ser ut, hydrodynamiskt och estetiskt. Den nya Panthera 2 blir 680 cm lång och 59 cm bred (men ritningen visar också ett par kortare alternativ; 646 eller 629 cm). Räknat på konstruktionsvattenlinjen blir djupgåendet 12 cm, den lastar ungefär 255 kg och har ungefär 600 liters volym. Bilden ovan är en skiss baserad på den slutliga skrovformen.

Lång vattenlinje och relativt hög Pc (0,57) innebär att Panthera 2 blir en mycket snabb kajak som vänder sig till ganska starka och tekniskt skickliga paddlare.  Arvet från surfskis innebär att den är lättmanövrerad, att den bör gå utmärkt i grov sjö och vara lätt att surfa ed full kontroll för att nå höga farter. Liksom surfskis i allmännhet är den beroende av ett relativt stort roder och linor utan flex till pedalerna.

Byggtekniskt är den lite knepigare att ribba än de flesta andra av mina kajaker. Det är den komplicerade formen på däcket som ställer krav på tålamod och påhittighet. Det långa och smala skrovet är däremot mycket lätt att ribba.

Jag räknar med att kunna presentera färdiga byggritningar någon gång i mitten av nästa vecka.


by Björn Thomasson at October 06, 2018 02:32 pm

October 05, 2018

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

Hopkins: Listing of Voyageur Art Work

Jeanne Doucette's blog post MÉTIS THROUGH THE EYES OF A LADY features most of the canoe-related artwork of Frances Anne Hopkins. Worth a look to see the images collected into one place. Clicking the image below will take you to the post.

by Murat ( at October 05, 2018 09:53 pm