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Five years ago, Adam Chappell had only dabbled in flatwater when he saw YouTube clips of kayakers at Buseater and taught himself to loop in his backyard pool. Now a rising talent in freestyle kayaking’s competitive ranks, Chappell walks you through his first go-to trick sequence in this Virtual Coach installment that can help you build a routine for your summer festival contest of choice.
The eddy turn is a gateway maneuver for aspiring river paddlers. It’s the move that allows you to quickly exit the current when you don’t like what you see downstream and re-enter the flow after taking a breather. The trouble is, for years it was one of the hardest skills for novice paddlers to grasp.
The late Bill Mason famously said, “Anyone who tells you portaging is fun is either a liar or crazy.” But in the same breath, the iconic canoeist and filmmaker would note that a little suffering goes a long way in escaping crowds of people, making the portage a gateway to wilderness paddling. It’s this element of portability that makes the canoe so perfectly suited to traveling lake-to-lake or descending wild rivers—or for going from the roof rack to the beach.
Sean Morley knows a few things about going fast. He honed his forward stroke technique as a flatwater sprint racer on the British junior national team, but has made his biggest mark traveling far and fast in challenging conditions. He’s held speed records for crossing the Irish Sea, circumnavigating Vancouver Island, and paddling 4,500 miles around Great Britain and Ireland, solo.
C&K’s canoe technique gurus, Paul and Willa Mason, demonstrate some of the finer points to packing for an overnight canoe trip in this latest episode of VIRTUAL COACH.
FOR C&K’S CANOE TECHNIQUE GURU PAUL MASON, getting on the water to film a series of skills videos with his daughter, Willa, has made for a fond trip down memory lane. Canoeists around the world still remember Paul as the plaid shirt-wearing 14-year-old paddling with his father, the late filmmaker and canoeing icon Bill Mason, in the acclaimed “Path of the Paddle” instructional series, which was produced by the National Film Board of Canada in the 1970s.
Paul Kuthe is the Program Manager at Portland, Ore.’s Alder Creek Kayak and Canoe, and a new-school leader in sea and whitewater kayak instruction. In this episode of C&K’s Virtual Coach, Kuthe covers an important sea kayak rescue technique to add to your bag of tricks when paddling with a partner, or teaching one to roll.
ERIC JACKSON CAN THROW DOWN. The Jackson Kayak founder claims four Freestyle World Championship titles, thanks in part to his ability to break complicated play moves into their constituent parts, and repeat them on demand. So if you want to learn an advanced playboating maneuver like the blunt to McNasty, you want to talk to E.J.
RUSH STURGES LIKES TO GO BIG WITH STYLE. That’s why the producer and star of Dynasty, Dream Result and Frontier makes the bow draw to boof stroke his go-to creekboating move. This technique (displayed at right by Rafa Ortiz) makes it simple and efficient to line your boat up before taking that big, game-breaking forward stroke-whether you’re trying to clear a boat-eating hydraulic or land a waterfall with precision.