Field Tested: 4 Expedition-Worthy Crossover Kayaks
Words: Joe Jackson Photos: Aaron Schmidt The Wild and Scenic stretch of Oregon’s Lower Rogue could well be defined as a crossover river. Ambling miles of emerald Class II punctuated with whoop-worthy Class III (and the occasional Class IV drop) make it a perfect place for beginner whitewater boaters to cross into the intermediate range. This heavenly protected stretch made famous by the likes of author Zane Grey and Meryl Streep (a la The River Wild) also toes the line between rugged and luxurious. Deep in the canyon, outfitters such as Rogue Wilderness Adventures serve rib-eye steaks to clients reclining on inflatable couches. This dichotomous stretch of river was the perfect testing ground for a quiver of four crossover kayaks. Our group of C&K staffers and regular contributors spent three long summer days on the Rogue, evaluating how each of these boats would serve as a do (almost) everything river craft. Over these 34 low-stress miles we sprinted in flatwater, dropped the crossovers’ retractable skegs to drift, peeled in and out of every eddy, and left no riffle unsurfed. In the evenings, we compared notes over delicious local craft brew from Ninkasi. After we left the Wild and Scenic section, we
7 Self-Support Lessons … on Idaho’s South Fork Salmon
Floating away from our cars left for the shuttle service, an overwhelmingly elation takes over, realizing that we're suddenly amidst three days of central Idaho wilderness paddling!
5 Can’t-Miss Paddling Day Trips
Day trips are paddling gateways. They mark the transition from casual after work paddles to the soul altering journeys of discovery that make sea kayaking, canoeing, and whitewater lifelong pursuits. The skills you learn from day tripping—gear selection, navigation, group dynamics and more complex paddle strokes to handle your craft in varying conditions—will serve you well in the future, and pave the way to longer overnight and multiday trips. Before you dive into this list of our favorite day trip destinations, heed this warning: You are about to take the first step toward becoming hopelessly addicted to paddling. Tallahassee, Fla. Floating Florida Santa Cruz, Calif. California Wild Asheville, N.C. Easy Eastern Whitewater Hessel, Mich. Sea Kayaking an Inland Sea Algonquin Park, Ontario The Heart of Canoe Country
Mission: Georgian Bay’s 30,000 Islands
Finding solace on Lake Huron's empty north shore, exploring the endless rocky maze of Georgian Bay's 30,000 Islands.
‘Atchafalaya River: The Mississippi’s Best Route to the Gulf’
C&K contributor David Hanson's latest film, 'Atchafalaya River: The Mississippi's Best Route to the Gulf' takes a moody look at the Atchafalaya Basin, captured during an April source-to-sea from Ft. Adams, Miss., to the Gulf of Mexico
Photos: Worlds in Review
Photos by Regina Nicolardi Nick Troutman sits in the eddy awaiting a judge’s thumbs up. His current score, 503.33, leaves him in fifth place. After leading the field through semi finals he is now the last kayaker to surf the Garberator Wave for the 2015 ICF Freestyle Kayak World Championship, and the only man standing between Dane Jackson and his second world title. Troutman is an Ottawa River native, and the lone Canadian in the men’s kayak final. The home crowd, a community who have rallied to make this world championship a success, are going insane for their local paddling hero. The grand stand constructed of metal and wood is rumbling, the audience deafening as Troutman drops in. He hits the wave running, starting with the high scoring air screws that many of the top paddlers use to open their routine, then working his way through the list of aerial maneuvers on the score sheet. As time expires, Troutman loses his paddle. He peels off the wave with his hands lifted into the air for his crowd, awaiting the judges’ score to see if he’ll earn a spot on the podium. “I kept thinking, just go slow and stay on the
On Sale Now: August 2015
Cliff Jacobson Unfiltered
An interview with canoeing author and north country legend Cliff Jacobson