Wednesday, June 30, 2010
The other part of the 'rolling is hard' mythos is this. 'my kayak doesn't roll easy'. If your paddling a touring kayak, it rolls easily. And if you have seen Dubside do a rolling presentation, then like me you have seen him roll a very wide recreation kayak, and do a Greenland roll no less. In fact Dubside hands out a brochure called something like 'Don't blame your kayak'.
So if it is easy, and it's not your kayaks fault, whose fault is it? It's ours. We get it so built up in our heads that it is difficult, added to the fact that we are upside down in water, and it doesn't happen. If you think you are going to fail, you are going to fail. That lesson isn't even Buddhism, or Martial Arts, it's basic psychology.
Rolling should be, and is fun. You should be having fun with rolling, like any other part of kayaking. But as soon as it becomes a chore, or a challenge we lose that perspective.
So we were at the East coast kayak festival, looking around the tent that Ben Lawry was teaching in, and I elbowed my friend. I said, look around. We were surrounded by middle aged paddlers who had decided that rolling was hard, and subsequently they had a hard time doing it. Ben made rolling look easy. Earlier in the day Dubside made rolling look easy. You know why? Because rolling your kayak is easy. And should be fun, like this.
Monday, June 28, 2010
Friday, June 25, 2010
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Monday, June 21, 2010
Friday, June 18, 2010
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
Monday, June 14, 2010
Friday, June 11, 2010
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Monday, June 7, 2010
Friday, June 4, 2010
I want to post a brief update to an earlier post, To Rudder or Skeg. This - as I suspected it would - generated a lot of comment and a fair amount of debate. I welcome that debate, and while I feel strongly about my beliefs, I try to be open to other ways of thinking. There is one major reason that I don't paddle a skegged boat, Ease of packing. I am at heart a long distance expedition style paddler. And giving up that storage/ease of packing is my primary reason. The kayak I paddle today was purchased with a particular trip in mind, which will hopefully be occurring next year at this time. That trip will require a massive amount of dry storage in a kayak. I think there are a great many arguments on both sides of the rudder/skeg debate, and I think for many of us one or two will truly resonate.
But Yesterday I read something concerning this debate that hadn't occurred to me. It was the 'letter from the editor' of Canoe and Kayak magazine. He pointed out something that I hadn't thought of. Skegs are primarily found on European style kayaks, whereas rudders are found primarily on North American style. These two styles have major differences in both the shape and performance of the boat. The Euro boats tend to be lower volume, with more rounded chines, and more rocker, which adds up to more maneuverability. So I think it would be a better idea to find the kayak that suits you, and then learn the pluses and minuses of the rudder or skeg.
I think it is important to keep an open mind, instead of saying you have to paddle one or the other. The important thing is that you paddle.