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Jersey Paddler’s Paddlesport 2015 – Remix

March 30, 2015
Belly Rubs - $1.00

Belly Rubs – $1.00

$1 belly rubs? Greatest fund raiser ever. With a willing yellow lab “accomplice” lying there comfortably on a large sot dog bed, one of the exhibitors at Jersey Paddler’s Paddlesport 2015 show was raising donations for pet rescue with one dollar belly rubs! This was just one of the many memorable moments at this weekend’s show held at the Garden State Exhibit Center in Somerset, NJ.

It’s always so fun to be at the Paddlesport show. We lived in the Garden State for 9 years and it was the first paddlesports show we ever went to. Attending it is kind of like remembering your first kiss (or your first unexpected wet exit). It’s a community gathering, a paddling community gathering. Sure we would have all rather been on the water, but since we were there we might as well make the best of it. All the big companies were there with their goods and experts. NRS, Werner Paddles, Jackson Kayaks, Kokatat, Hobie, Johnson Outdoors, Thule, Confluence Outdoors, Bic Sport, EPIC kayaks (I spotted 12 time Molokai World Championships Surfski title holder and co-founder Oscar Chalupsky at the booth). Super fun to see all the gear and learn a ton. Thanks to Ken Driscoll, designer from Glide SUP, who gave us a nice education on SUP design.

Glide SUP booth

Glide SUP booth

Wilderness Systems Booth

Wilderness Systems Booth


Oscar Chalupsky at the Epic Kayaks booth


Friendly smiles at the entrance

Friendly smiles at the entrance

One of the cool things about #Paddlesport2015 is the pool on the exhibit hall floor. We got the chance to see Jackson Kayak ProStaffers Matt Trucks and Mark Wheeler demo some kayak fishing techniques.


Jackson Kayak Pro Staffer Matt Trucks demonstrates paddling techniques unique to kayak fishing


Virginia Beach native, Mark Wheeler, showing us how to make the hook up


We also got to see the “Kids in Kayaks in-water demo.”

FullSizeRender (2)

It’s always good to chat with Justine Curgenven. I always enjoy her sea kayak talks, but I couldn’t go because of the schedule of my talks didn’t work with her speaking schedule.Her new DVD “Kayaking the Aleutians” is great – if you don’t own it – you should buy it. Now, seriously. Click on the link and buy it. Now. Good. Now we can move on while you wait for it to be delivered.

“You’ll never guess who I ran into”

I presented two talks this year at Paddlesport. “Paddling Chincoteague” is one of my favorites and is always well attended. “Understanding Cold Water Immersion” is a newer talk for me and I’ve only presented it once before (at Canoecopia in Madison, Wisconsin). This talk was one I spent months researching and crafting back in 2013. At the time I felt “full” with all the newly acquired knowledge and ready to lay it out for the audience. I haven’t looked at it since and was so busy recently that I didn’t back to it until last week. I felt a little nervous heading in there, but I figured I had done a lot of work on it and I comforted myself with the thought that I had probably spent more time thinking about it and studying it than anyone who would be in the audience. The Metedeconk room cleared out from the previous talk at 10:50 am and I went in and got busy getting my laptop setup. Just as I finish fiddling with the AV setup, in walks a very familiar looking figure – tall, graying, distinguished looking. I immediately recognized him. Sure enough, it was the man Sea Kayaker Magazine featured in June 2009 as one of foremost authorities on keeping paddlers safe in cold water. A man who, according to the article I studied before my talk, is “an expert in the physiology of cold water immersion and outspoken advocate for cold water safety.” I thought I was dreaming but then, I saw it. There it was, hanging around his neck – the bright pink Paddlesport name badge with the name in bold black letters: “Chuck Sutherland – American Canoe Association.” WHAT? Dr. Charles Sutherland? PhD in endocrinology, multiple post doctoral fellowships in biochemistry and pharmacology Chuck Sutherland? Attending my talk on Cold Water Immersion? Good Grief Charlie Brown. That’s like Charles Lindbergh walking into your “Solo Crossings of the Atlantic” talk. It’s like Einstein walking into your physics talk. So much for the “spent more time studying it than anyone in the audience” idea. Whattya gonna do? I gave my presentation and I think it went well. Afterwards, we had a chance to talk and he was so pleased that this kind of thing is still going on. He understands the importance of disseminating the information more than just about anyone. It’s hard to get people to attend such a lecture who don’t already have an interest, but it is something that anyone who paddles needs to know. He gave me a copy of his most recent brochure and better yet, his email address so I could correspond with him. It was really a memorable moment – definitely the most memorable moment from this year’s show.

Dr Charles "Chuck" Sutherland - Cold Water Immersion Expert

Me with Dr. Charles “Chuck” Sutherland – Cold Water Immersion Expert



Getting some pointers from Dr Sutherland after my talk. He was very encouraging and supportive.


Thanks to John and the entire Jersey Paddler family for hosting this wonderful event every year.



Tonight’s the Night!!

March 19, 2015

Tonight is the night for the Dayton screening of the Reel Paddling Film Festival World Tour.  Tom Helbig and I will be at The Neon to host along with all our sponsors and friends! Show starts at 7:30. We have all kinds of fun planned for tonight. “Tomfoolery” if you will 😉 (wink wink). Until 2:00pm tickets are available online for a discounted rate. If you can’t get to it, DON’T WORRY, we’ll have tickets at the door. 

Canoecopia by the Numbers

March 19, 2015

We traveled to Madison, Wisconsin this past weekend to the World’s Largest Paddlesports Show – hosted by Rutabaga Paddlesports at The Alliant Energy Center. Here’s my recap of Canoecopia 2015 “by the numbers”

12– number of presentations we attended. The presentations are one of the best parts of Canoecopia. Where else can you hear a talk by a world renown authority on wolves and moose, a sea kayaker from Wales who paddled the length of the Aleutian chain, the most published canoeing/camping writer of this century, and two adventurers who traced the paddlestrokes of Teddy Roosevelt down a wild river in Brazil IN THE SAME DAY?!?! Only at Canoecopia. Love it!


Alec and Sharon Bloyd-Peshkin


Amy and Dave Freeman #savetheBWCA

15 – The percentage of savings that was offered on almost every item in the exhibit hall. From canoes to life jackets, to tents and hammocks, axes, packs etc. You name it – they had it – and all discounted! So cool to be able to see all the latest equipment.


Part of the exhibit floor at Canoecopia


Big crowd out for the Aluminum Chef competiton

– This year was the 5th time we have attended Canoecopia and it keeps getting better. We drove up on Friday and arrived in time to walk in at 4:00pm when the show opened. We took in 4 talks and spent an hour in the exhibit hall. Saturday was a full day where we attended 7 more presentations and spent more time shopping and learning on the show floor.
0 – the amount of money I paid at the Princeton Tec booth to get the part necessary to repair my broken headlight. These guys stand behind their product!

30 – As in the release of the 30th anniversary of Cliff Jacobson’s book “Canoeing Wild Rivers” Long considered the premier text for wilderness canoeing and camping, the new full color edition has been heavily revised and expanded. At Canoecopia, not only can you hear Cliff Jacobson share his wisdom in his multiple presentations, but you can meet him, talk to him and get him to autograph your copy of his new book!

The Legendary Cliff Jacobson

1 – dollar… as in… the smallest amount each purchaser had the opportunity to donate to the Josh Kestelman Scholarship Fund. I’m sure many donated more. Josh was an instructor for Rutabaga Outdoor Programs and his passion was introducing kids to canoeing and kayaking. His life was cut tragically short by cancer. The fund is used to pay for scholarships for kids to participate in paddling programs.


Great weekend – Great show – Thanks Rutabaga. We’ll be back!

List of Films for Dayton Screening of Reel Paddling Film Festival World Tour

March 10, 2015

We have previewed all of the award winning films and the short listed films from the Reel Paddling Film Festival World Tour. We have selected the 9 very best films for the Dayton screening. Over the next 9 days we will be posting the trailer from one of the films on our Facebook page.

Here is the list of films we will be showing at our event on March 19 at The Neon in Dayton

  • Whitewater Mexico
  • Kayak Fishing Lake Guntersville
  • We Belong to it
  • Outriggers and SUP in Tahiti
  • DamNation
  • The Grand Canyon of the Stikine
  • Andørja World Record Expedition
  • A Paddler’s Pilgrimage
  • Delta Dawn

Tickets are still available by clicking on the link to the upper right of this page. Buying tickets in advance will save you $5 per ticket

Reel Paddling Film Festival coming to Dayton Ohio March 19

February 9, 2015

We have finalized the details for the 2015 presentation of the World Tour of the Reel Paddling Film Festival.  We are excited to announce that The Neon Theater at 130 East 5th St will be the venue again this year.

Click here to watch the RPFF trailer 

Click on the button below to buy tickets in advance and save $5 per ticket


Reel Paddling Film Festival returning to Dayton

December 17, 2014

We’re in the final stages of determining a date for the 2015 Reel Paddling Film Festival.

Keep an eye here for the date and time.


Park and Play

May 4, 2014

We stopped by the Buck Creek Whitewater feature (Snyder Park, Springfield Ohio) to see what was going on. We discovered a whitewater kayak class from Wittenberg University.

20140504-151423.jpg It’s fun to see the “Park and Play” Feature being used for it’s intended purpose.

20140504-151653.jpgBeautiful day for kayaking. Unless, of course you go for a swim and aren’t dressed for the water temperature like young lady in this photo below!

Oooh… CHILLY!!!
More photos below