Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Olympic travels

Hi Folks,

It's over a month since my last post which is some indication of how busy I have been. The paddling season is in full swing which means lots of demos and events up and down the west coast. I have travelled well over 20k miles in my trusty Ford E250 van so far this year!

I have just got back from another road trip: this time to Washington State, for the Puget Sound Sea Kayak Symposium near Tacoma beneath the towering 14,410ft Mt Ranier an active volcano encased in snow and ice.
I stayed with Rob Avery and his wife Kris for a few days on Bainbridge Island which gave us an opportunity to talk business and plan for the future. Rob and I then taught a couple of classes for Tammi Hinkle at Adventures Through Kayaking in Port Angeles before heading even further up the Olympic Peninsular to the Hoebuck Hoedown Surf Kayak Festival at Neah Bay close to Cape Flattery, the most Northwesterly part of the contiguous continetal USA.

The surf was uncharacteristically tiny but we had fun all the same. There is a solid bunch of talented surf kayakers in the Pacific Northwest and it was good to hang out with them for a couple of days. Neah Bay is a beautiful beach that belongs to the Makah Tribe whose village lies on the northeast (sheltered) side of Cape Flattery. I couldn't resist taking a couple of photos of the local watercraft. Bald Eagles are as common as seagulls in the busy harbor and osprey regularly flew past the beach, talons clenched around their catch.

I want to thank the Olympic Paddlers for hosting the event and especially Rob Casey and Deb Volturno for their hard work. It was a really worthwhile trip for me and it was good to be able to support Tammi Hinkle, the owner of Adventures Through Kayaking in Port Angeles. I can certainly recommend the Olympic Coast of the PNW as one of the most beautiful I have yet seen.

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