Official results are in for our First Annual Reader's Choice Awards. Our recent online survey asked about the paddling people, feats and gear that most inspired you in 2010, and the votes poured in as 3,600 voted on 13 categories. Readers weighed in on everything from their favorite paddler to their favorite kayak.
No surprise, Paddler of the Year title goes to Freya Hoffmeister, while her coveted Circumnavigation of Australia takes first for Expedition of the Year. Reeling in Favorite Movie of the Year is Kayak Fishing: Game On, outcasting both The Risen Sun and Dream Result, respectively.
Winner in Best New Product class, Aquapac delivers the goods in their new Waterproof SLR case. Necky’s Looksha Elite owns bragging rights for Best New Sea Kayak, the Wilderness Systems Commander was the Best New Fishing Kayak and the Wenonah Fusion was the choice in Best Canoe category. On the whitewater side, Pyranha’s crossover boat, the Fusion, was top dog and Liquidlogic’s Coupe, the tops in the sit-on-top category. The Dagger Axis was voted best new Recreation Touring kayak while Kokatat was voted Apparel Brand of the Year. Werner was the top kayak paddle and Bending Branches the top canoe stick manufacturer.
But the people spoke loudly, screaming that they love their local paddling shops by making the category the most hotly debated in our comments section. Following is a list of the top ten retail shops around the country from the 2010 Reader's Choice Awards:
- Austin Canoe & Kayak (Texas)
- Aqua Adventures (California)
- Appomattox River Co. (Virginia)
- Rutabaga (Wisconsin)
- Mountainman Outdoor Supply Company (New York)
- California Canoe & Kayak
- Alder Creek Kayak and Canoe (Oregon)
- Lincoln Canoe & Kayak (Maine)
- Nantahala Outdoor Center (North Carolina)
- Naples Kayak Co. (Florida)