Friday, January 30, 2009
Popeye's had a sweet location on the upper floor, with the spotlight on the cherry Fathom LV, lots of room for boaters to take a look at their Eddyline and Seaward boats, and a nice selection of Stohlquist PFDs. Thanks to Dean and Bedelia for letting me hang out there for a while and chat with visitors.
Dean and Bedelia had such a good show, they're looking a little blurry... but the smiles are still there.
Hobie Cats Northwest and my old friends from Sail Sand Point shared a booth in the middle of the sailing section that featured -- beneath that gorgeous Hobie Tiger -- sit-on-top kayaks. Their display of kayak fishing gear was pretty cool too, with Bryce from Northwest Kayak Anglers regaling visitors with stories of lunkers hauled in on the deck of a Hobie.
This guy kept his legs moving, pedaling for ten straight days and never looking tired. Must be that comfy Stohlquist Wedge-E PFD.
Many thanks to Windworks Sailing, Scott, Laura, Greg, and the whole crew who allocated some prime space in their booth for the hottest, coolest shades out there.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
"Bill, you coming out for the race this Saturday at Gas Works?"
"Jordan, I'm a kayaker, not an outrigger man... and I haven't hardly paddled all winter. I'm really out of shape."
"Awwww man, come on! They'll let you race. You should come down."
A phone call to Don Kiesling confirmed the excitement, so I geared up if only to watch Don paddle 6 miles with his bare hands and hope I can beat him in my kayak.
So no s^&*, there I was...
HUI WA'A O WAKINIKONA was happy to see everyone come out. This was the first in a 7-race series around Puget Sound that concludes in April at Sail Sand Point Outrigger on Lake Washington.
I chased Steve Bennett all the way down the course, but never caught him... he was paddling so easily and I was thrashing along. Must be his 40 years of racing. Or his wing paddle. Or the extra 2 feet of waterline in his boat. Or my forward stroke sucks. Hmmmmmm.
Bernie Swanson showed up and snapped the pics you see here. Thanks Bernie! I think he deleted the one of my final 100 yards "what is that Bill, a low brace?" total fatigue stroke. Either that or he's saving it for blackmail.
Much mahalo to Wakinikona. Good times, great people, warm fire and excellent post-race pupus! The soup really hit the spot.
Thursday, January 15, 2009
I first titled the session "How to get what you want from your local paddlesports specialty shop... without pissing anyone off". Somehow that title didn't work on a public forum, so while the content of the discussion stays the same, the official title speaks of karma and goodwill.
Since joining this happy industry a few years ago under the watchful training of m'man Charles Graves, I've grown passionate about the need for paddlers to buy local... not because it's good for the economy and oh my, what about that poor local businessman, no not so much. More so because it builds our paddling community. For every paddle, skirt or dry suit we order on line because we save a few bucks on a "no tax, free shipping" deal, a piece of our community's soul goes away. Every time that same piece of gear gets purchased from a local dealer, it gives that dealer a chance to expand the services they offer. Essentially, by buying local, we buy back a little of that soulful lifestyle that makes our favorite paddle shop our favorite place to go hang out.
Of course, it's a two-way street. The shop needs to start out being a place you want to go hang out. They need to be open when you need them, responsive to your special requests, and open to serve every level of paddler with products, classes, and groups that keep everyone safe and excited about going on the water. We'll get into that too, so I'm hoping we can get a few shop owners in the crowd.
This seminar is in its 4th year and keeps growing and getting more interesting every year. Come on out, support WWTA's mission of conservation and access to our favorite paddling places, and learn a bundle while you're there. If you can't make it, I hope you'll shoot me an email or just comment here on the blog with your thoughts about the topic. Any ideas, anecdotes or suggestions are welcome!
*Check out today's current list of presenters. What a rush, getting listed with these folks. Many thanks to WWTA for the opportunity to be a part of the fun!
Sunday, January 11, 2009
From: Richard, Discovery Sea Kayak
Subject: Discovery Sea Kayaks ranked Best Travel Company on Earth
Discovery Sea Kayaks was ranked by National Geographic Adventure Magazine as one of the BEST TRAVEL COMPANIES ON EARTH for the second year in a row. We were ranked in 2008 and increased our ranking for 2009! This is an accomplishment we are very proud of. We strive to produce the best kayak tour experience on every trip. Our guides are a testament to our standard of quality. Providing a safe, educational and fun experience that everyone will remember. When it comes to recognition from organizations such as National Geographic Adventure, it is our guides we have to thank for working hard and taking pride in their position as a kayak guide.
I want to say say thank you to all of our guides that worked hard during the 2008 season. I hope all of them are doing well today and can share in the honor of being selected as one of the BEST!
Discovery Sea Kayak
A " Best Outfitter on Earth"Two years in a row 2008 and 2009
National Geographic Adventure Magazine
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
Here's a 2008 Eddyline Nighthawk 17.5. I also have a Fathom LV (blue), Skylark (red), and an Equinox (blue), plus a handful of lightly-used Stohlquist pfds and dry suits, and a few Bending Branches paddles in both composite and wood construction. Please contact me directly, firstname.lastname@example.org, for a price list and more pictures.
Sunday, January 4, 2009
Here's a slightly edited version of the DeBondts' most recent update on the event. Please contact them directly if you have any questions. Hope to see you there!
If you plan to come or just want updates (nice thing about the pummel is people can decide to come at the last minute or not), email us at email@example.com and we will put you on the list for updates.
Feel free to forward to anyone you think might be interested....
La Push Pummel 2009
That time again for the annual LaPush Pummel, but later than traditionally. The dates are the weekend of Feb 13-15, 2008. Hard to say what the weather and surf will bring for us, but that is part of the fun and excitement!!
All kinds of kayaking possible around the Olympics river running, creek boating, surfing or Sea Kayaking. If we get sunny, calm weather bring your sunglasses and sea kayak and explore James Island and the area around. This is more of a gathering than an organized event, and surfing is definetly at your own risk.
Sprague Ackley started the gathering back in 1986, and nice to keep the tradition going. It is a great reason to get out to the Olympics and to La Push.
For anyone interested we plan to do a party/potluck on Saturday night. We will bring a bigger pot to boil your own crab for those interested. Bring your own drinks and lots of kayaking/surf stories to share. I have the clubhouse at the RV park reserved for Saturday Feb 14th at 6pm. Maybe get old photos/movies from LaPush together for slide show on my laptop as well.
For lodging contact LaPush Ocean Park http://www.quileutenation.org/index.cfm?page=home.cfm, phone 800-487-1267. There is also camping available, you can contact the resort or the RV park at 360-374-4338.
For more information, please contact Ken and Ellen DeBondt 206-527-2565 email firstname.lastname@example.org. Email us if you plan to come and if you also sea kayak or river kayak and we can fill you in on the details as the time gets closer. We will be out of town Jan 14-26th but will get back to everyone after that. We are looking forward to good surf and fun times!!! Hope to see you there.