Archive for the 'Paddling Safety' Category

Retiring a Life Jacket

Thursday, September 1st, 2011

In over 20 years of canoeing and kayaking, I did something recently that I have never had to do before – I had to retire a life jacket from service due to equipment failure.  As I was getting my equipment ready before a class, I noticed the tear in the fabric around the neck.  I […]

Fitting a Life Jacket

Tuesday, August 16th, 2011

A Caution About Paddle Float Re-entries

Tuesday, July 19th, 2011

Call it bad luck, but in the last month I’ve had two students break my paddles when learning to do the standard paddle float self rescue.  Prior to this, I never had a paddle break in 13 years of teaching this skill.  In both cases, the paddles broke at the ferrule.  Both paddles were Werner […]

Getting Comfortable in Waves and Surf

Monday, May 9th, 2011

It doesn’t take most people very long to get comfortable paddling a sea kayak on an inland lake.  The boats, despite the seeming narrow width, are surprisingly stable once you get the feel of the balance.  Where most paddlers run into some problems is when you start introducing the variable of waves and breaking surf.  […]

Weather Radios

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011

April in the Midwest brings thoughts of severe storms and tornado awareness drills.  A local Milwaukee television station has partnered with Walgreen’s in Southeast Wisconsin to promote and sell NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) weather radios at a discount.  These weather radios only cost around $30 and sound an alarm whenever the National Weather […]

Cold Water Kills!

Monday, April 11th, 2011

I’ve been pretty busy lately teaching kayaking at some local high school physical education classes.  The teaching isn’t too hard, but all the boat loading, unloading, and gear hauling takes its toll on me physically, not to mention having to get up at 5am this week.  As a result, I haven’t gotten a blog posted […]

Building a First Aid Kit

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

One of my students asked me to write a blog about putting together a first aid kit.  Since this is an important piece of gear that all paddlers should carry with them, I will try to make some suggestions on getting training and assembling a good basic kit.  I am not a doctor or medical […]

What’s so special about “sit-on-tops”?

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

Here is the long-awaited fourth video in my series on the differences between  recreational, whitewater, and sea kayaks.  This video covers the characteristics of “sit-on-top” kayaks which can be designed for recreational use, whitewater paddling, and sea kayaking.  So if you are looking to get started in kayaking, you still need to understand the differences […]

What is “acceptable risk”?

Saturday, February 26th, 2011

I’ve been wrestling with this question for many years ever since my brother died in a sky-diving accident leaving a wife and young daughter behind, and our parents with just one surviving child – me.  At the time, I was just starting to get more serious about my own sea kayaking activities, but I had […]

More Sad Reminders

Tuesday, February 15th, 2011

I was going to work on the fourth video in my series on different types of kayaks, but as I was doing my usual check of blogs and Facebook this morning, it became clear that this might be the time to give another reminder about the dangers of paddling in cold water.  Dick Silberman’s blog […]

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