One man's rush to jump on the kayaking bandwagon

Short trip on the lake

Jean joined me on Falls Lake for a quick paddle. Hoping to avoid mud, we put in at the dam. That was a mistake. Hauling the kayaks down the hill isn't too bad, but hauling them back up is too much. It was odd seeing Jean in my Tsunami instead of what I now refer to as the Danny DeVito of kayaks.
tags: lake

September 30, 2007

Drought and new gear

The water level at Falls Lake is significantly lower than I've ever seen it. It's really scary to see all of the stumps and rocks that were just below the surface, just waiting to put a hole in my boat or my head.
I've paddled my kayak behind this bench
I've paddled my kayak behind this bench
Dry swim area on Falls Lake
Dry swim area on Falls Lake
My new Snap Dragon Ocean Trek skirt fits perfectly. Not having a clue what I was doing, I was a bit worried that the skirt was too small for my boat. I was sufficiently smited by the usual suspects who pointed what should have been obvious. It's a lot easier to get it to fit when you're actually in the boat.
I also took the time to attach the front and rear hatches to the boat. I still need to figure out a way to attach the day hatch cover.
tags: lake, gear

September 20, 2007

Seattle - Kayaking heaven?

On my way back from my trip to Canada, I was hoping to find some real kayak stores around Seattle. I was looking for something other than the rec and whitewater stores we have here. I wanted to find places that had real sea kayaking gear.
I guess I should feel lucky here in Raleigh, NC, but I don't. I have Great Outdoor Provision Company and three REIs close by. But I want more. I want a place that sells kayaks that don't come with a fishing rod and multiple cup holders.
We stopped at Seattle Raft & Kayak and Northwest Outdoor Center. It wasn't quite retail heaven as I'm not a fan of Werner paddles, and that's all any store in the Seattle area seems to have, but it was close. I was able to see and touch things that I've only previously seen online. I didn't buy anything, but I did confirm that Snap Dragon considers my gut to be "extra large". That's what their fit guide said it was, but I had to try one just to make sure. When the temperature here drops below 95 degrees, I'll order my all neoprene skirt.
I was impressed with Northwest Outdoor Center's location on Lake Union. I'm sure I'm odd in thinking this, but I'd rather paddle among these beavers and otters than these.
Local wildlife
Local wildlife
Looking back on it, I should have gotten something while I was there. I went to the most impressive kayak stores I'd ever seen and I got nothing. But, Jean did get a t-shirt.
tags: travel

September 03, 2007