C&K Contributing Editor Kate Stepan delves into the recent heated debate on gender roles in whitewater kayaking sparked by the 2012 release of BDP Productions’ ‘Pleasure Strokes’ and the paddling community’s ensuing response.
One hundred fifty years ago this month, our young nation was beginning its darkest hour—a four-year Civil War that would claim nearly 700,000 lives. Today, a century and a half later, that agony lingers deep in our collective consciousness. And one of the best and most peaceful ways to visit these battlefield sites is by paddling the bodies of water that have defined them through the years.
Outside a grocery store in Nags Head, N.C., a man is talking on the phone with his wife. “They’re surfing in kayaks down here!” he says. “No, both men and women do it. The women are just as good as the men!” Indeed, the town of Nags Head, on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, is stirring with interest in the ongoing World Championships of Surf Kayaking.
Sam Sutton from Rotorua in New Zealand impressively demonstrated Saturday that he is still the fastest extreme paddler in the world. At the fifth edition of the adidas Sickline Extreme Kayak World Championship in Tirol’s Ötztal Valley, the 23-year-old Sutton defended his title with a new course record of 55.84 seconds…
Over 400 whitewater boaters crawled out of remote creeks, deep canyons, and office spaces to converge on an abandoned Forest Service campsite, Sept. 23-25, in the California’s High Sierra to celebrate—heartily—the American Whitewater-negotiated release of the North Fork of the Feather River. The Chico Paddleheads club organized the 21st annual Feather River Festival…
On the third day of a weeklong, early spring canoe trip in northern Ontario, my trip mates start calling me Shackleton. We’ve been icebound on sprawling Smoothwater Lake since the end of Day One, when we dragged, pushed and occasionally paddled across 10 miles of ice, slush and short-lived leads of open water. From this sweeping sand beach on Smoothwater’s east side, it’s disappointingly obvious that zeal outweighed logic in planning this early season trip across 75 miles of prime canoe country in search of the lake that carries my family name. Breakup is days away, and our expedition is fast becoming a failure.
On Monday afternoon, kayaker and filmmaker Rush Sturges was hanging out in Sea-Tac’s international terminal waiting to board a flight through to Munich, Germany. He’d already checked two kayaks—one creek boat, one play boat (“Not cheap,” he sighed)—and he was unclear exactly when he’d return.
Kayaker Jesse Coombs and photographer Lucas Gilman teamed up in March 2011 to run, and document, Cooombs’ drop of Oregon’s foreboding, 96-foot Aibiqua Falls. On Saturday, the duo appeared as guests on Good Morning America to discuss the, um, “daredevil drop.” It’s worth another look.
Discounting Alert (pop. 5) and Eureka (pop. 0), Ellesmere Island in the high Canadian Arctic has one settlement that might be called a community, and that’s Grise Fiord (pop. 141), according to 2006 census figures. Located on one of Ellesmere’s southerly tips, Grise Fiord is home to at least one nurse.
Peter, Dan and Paul Bragiel are brothers from the Chicagoland area whose combined canoeing experience, prior to this summer, amounted to three days total. They all live in California—Dan, 31, and Paul, 33, are Silicon Valley Internet entrepreneurs, and Peter, 29, is a Los Angeles-based filmmaker with a strong chi for adventure. This summer, and thanks in part to a grant from YouTube, the trio recruited Tony Corella, a 25-year-old filmmaker from L.A., in order to attempt to canoe the length of the Mississippi River…
Finally, after two weeks of extended meetings and film showings in Brazil, the real objective of our trip to Brazil is directly infront of us. I know what you must be thinking and, no, Carnival is still five months out. For Chris Korbulic, Pedro Oliva and I, the real point of our annual reunion in Brazil has always been based on the next big river descent.
On a clear October day in the middle of the Ka’iwi Channel, the island of Oahu is a distant smudge on the horizon and 45-foot outrigger canoes, each carrying six strong men paddling full out, appear only as rocking torsos and slashing paddles glimpsed amid the swell rolling down from the north.