Erik Boomer and Jon Turk officially departed for their 100-something day attempt to circumnavigate Ellesmere Island on May 2, from Ottawa, Canada. As Boomer describes it, they will be linking together various puddle-jumping flights, including a stop-over on Baffin Island, until they reach the real “put-in.”
Patrick Camblin, event director of the Whitewater Grand Prix, was this morning scrambling down an embankment in order to access a nice-looking wave on the Saguenay River, in Quebec. “Two freestyle contests will be happening in the next few days, so we’re rallying all over and trying to find what our best bet is going to be for a spot,” he says. “We’re just arriving at a wave right now, actually…
Earlier this month, Darrin Kimbler launched his canoe at the mouth of the Columbia River, near Astoria, Ore., with his dog, Mike, and a full load of gear. If all goes according to plan—and according to Kimbler’s blog, CanoeAcrossAmerica.com, not all has gone according to plan already—Kimbler and Mike will paddle into Key West, Fla., in eight months time.
“So you’re starting to see what I mean about all the sanding?” says Ron Pellinen, my wooden canoe-building mentor, when I walk into his shop on a brisk March morning in Northern Ontario. Perched on an office chair in his workshop garage, Pellinen has just cut the power to the orbital sander he was using to smooth the contours of a thwart, one of the ash crosspieces that adds strength and structure to a canoe.
Being the publisher of the world’s biggest paddling magazine does have its perks. Last winter, for example, Larry Vermeeren of Small World Adventures (SWA) invited me down to Ecuador, where he has been running paddling trips since 1993. It was the best week of paddling I’ve ever had.
Among the many challenges awaiting sea kayakers Jeff Allen and Harry Whelan in their attempt to set a new speed record for circumnavigating Ireland, two stand out: The fickle weather and unforgiving cliffs of the Emerald Isle’s west coast, and the temptation of pints of Guinness in countless coastal pubs. Next week, Allen, a Brit, and Ireland-native Whelan will set off to try to break the 33-day circumnavigation record set in 1990 by Mick O’Meara, Dermot Blount, Brian Fanning and Karl Heery.
One of this video’s opening narrations says it all: “Day one, we found a dead body… It’s the second one we’ve found.” That sums up the intensity of Siberia’s Lower Bashkaus Gorge high in the Altai Mountains just north of Mongoia, tackled last summer by Sickline Adidas Team members…
Oh spring, glorious spring! On April 1 the California Department of Water Resources reported that the Shasta River Basin was showing 199 percent of its average snowpack. At the end of March, Northstar-at-Tahoe reported 42 feet of snow—the ski resort’s snowiest winter in 25 years. Most whitewater paddlers are frothing over the length and potential of this fresh season with the amount of precipitation feeling borderline biblical.
A landslide last week hit Icicle Creek Road, near Leavenworth, Wash., closing the road at the site of the slide and barring boater access to the upper section of Icicle Canyon, the deepest canyon in Washington state and popular Northwest Class IV/V whitewater kayaking run.
By Tim Mutrie Tim Taylor of Tauranga, New Zealand just completed paddling around New Zealand’s South Island, and now he’s about halfway through completing his kayak circumnavigation of the North Island, too. Taylor, a 23-year-old tractor driver and former winemaker, is attempting to complete the first continuous solo kayak circumnavigation of New Zealand—the north and […]
Whitewater canoeing does not attract the large and consolidated following of its stepchild, kayaking. Since the advent of plastic kayaks more than 30 years ago canoes have been consigned to permanent minority status, with the noteworthy exception of 10 days each March on the whitewater that flows off the Cumberland Plateau around Lenoir City, Tennessee. For those glorious few days in the wet Appalachian spring, open-boaters reclaim their place atop the paddling hierarchy, and if any kayaker feels bold enough to question this old-world order, Michael “Louie” Lewis will happily, and emphatically, set him or her straight.
Kirk Albert Walter Wipper: 1923-2011. For Kirk Wipper, a canoe was a piece of living history. It spoke of aboriginal and European builders, of designs inspired by geography and building materials, and of the movement of people across North American waterways, and, ultimately, the preservation of wild canoe country. A canoe was meant to be paddled—as a means of discovering history firsthand.