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  Arcata, California - For Spring 2016 Kokatat is expanding its offering of gear with the award winning SwitchZip technology, which features a fully separating watertight zipper allowing paddlers to wear a garment as a full dry suit or as an individual top. Kokatat introduced the innovative zipper system that fully separates at the waist last year with the GORE-TEX® Idol dry suit.  For Spring 2016 SwitchZip will be integrated in the new touring specific GORE-TEX® Radius Dry Suit, the GORE-TEX® Surge Paddling Suit, and the GORE-TEX® Passage Anorak.  The Passage Anorak, as well as the tops of all suits with SwitchZip, can be warn alone or mated with any other SwitchZip compatible pant, including the Idol.   “Last season paddlers saw how fantastic SwitchZip is in one suit.  With the expansion of the technology, they get additional versatility as they can now mix and match tops and bottoms,” said Jeff Turner, Kokatat Sales Manager. Kokatat Radius   The GORE-TEX® Radius is a fully featured dry suit designed for touring paddlers.  The Radius has a fully adjustable hood with reflective accents that can be removed and stowed in the jacket’s fleece lined outer collar.  There are easy to access, self-draining, zippered pockets on each sleeve and another pocket on the right thigh, and reflective highlights throughout the suit provides better visibility.  The Radius also features GORE-TEX® socks and latex neck and wrist gaskets to help ensure that no matter the conditions a paddler finds themselves in they will be dry.  MSRP – $1,295.00 Kokatat Surge   The GORE-TEX® Surge Paddling Suit is designed for paddlers who want a high performance lightweight suit that provides waterproof protection and high breathability for fitness, SUP, or touring.  It’s built with a light weight 3-layer GORE-TEX® fabric with 330 Cordura GORE-TEX® reinforcements in the high wear areas of the seat and knees.  The suit features a single hand adjustable NeoCinch neoprene collar and latex wrist gaskets, along with GORE-TEX® socks to keep water out.  For the sea kayaker looking for a lightweight expedition option, the bottoms of the suit can be paired with the GORE-TEX® Passage Anorak with SwitchZip.  MSRP – $850   Kokatat Passage   Available with and without SwitchZip, the GORE-TEX® Passage…
Ely, Minnesota (July 15, 2015) – Educators and explorers Dave and Amy Freeman will kick off A Year in the Wilderness this September, continuing their efforts to gain permanent protection for the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. For this expedition, the Freemans will spend a full year in the Boundary Waters. Last year, for the pair’s Paddle to DC journey, they paddled and sailed 101 days and 2,000 miles from Ely, Minnesota, to Washington, DC, to help protect the Boundary Waters. "We are wilderness guides and educators and this is our way of working to help keep this wilderness wild," said Amy Freeman. "We care deeply about this place and we will do everything within our power to ensure that it remains intact for the next generation." Their new expedition will continue their efforts to permanently protect the Boundary Waters from the proposed sulfide-ore copper mines on the edge of the Wilderness and support the Campaign to Save the Boundary Waters. "We made a commitment to protecting the Boundary Waters when we took on the Paddle to DC, but we know we still have a lot of work to do to protect the Boundary Waters watershed from sulfide-ore copper mining and we want to do what we can to finish the job," said Amy Freeman. "On September 23, 2015, Dave and I will launch our canoe in the Kawishiwi River and paddle into the Boundary Waters and become immersed in the Wilderness for a full year," said Freeman "We will camp at approximately 120 different sites during this Year in the Wilderness and travel more than 3,000 miles by canoe, foot, ski, snowshoe and dog team. This trip is about bearing witness to the very land and water we are fighting to protect." Dave and Amy Freeman have traveled more than 30,000 miles by kayak, canoe and dogsled through some of the world’s wildest places, from the Amazon to the Arctic. They are 2014 National Geographic Adventurers of the Year. The Freemans also run the Wilderness Classroom Organization, an educational nonprofit geared towards inspiring kids to get outside and explore…
I love everything about the recent story in the Canberra Times newspaper in Australia where people have been reporting the eerie sight of a man dressed as an undertaker while on a stand-up paddle board shaped like a coffin. I'm serious; you can’t make this stuff up. Jeanne Mclauchlan was one seasoned paddler who spotted the man during an early morning venture to the lake on Saturday morning. "In the distance, as we came towards the Carillon we noticed a figure emerge from the thick fog," she said.  "It was a figure of a man dressed in a tuxedo and top hat on a stand-up-paddle (SUP) coffin, complete with flowers, paddling toward us. "We asked 'coffin man', 'Where are you going'? His response was, 'To Queanbeyan cemetery as I have a 3pm grave site to prepare'." But of course some people have their coattails in a knot as some relatives of patients at Clare Holland House (a local hospice) felt that looking out and seeing him paddle by was both inappropriate and insensitive. So the mystery lives on of who the paddler is and what I think is one of the greatest paddling costumes ever. More info: canberratimes.com.au Photo credits: Jeanne Mclauchlan
Check out this super succinct whitewater rolling instructional video posted by Dane Jackson. Five phases from zero to hero roller.
I just got word from the folks at Naturally Superior Adventures that trip I'm guiding this summer enough people signed up to ensure that it's a go. But I'm on the hunt for 1-2 more people to make it even awesommer. Taking place July 31 to August 8, we are going to catch a boat shuttle who will drop us off our on the elusive, mysterious and hardly ever visited, Michipicoten Island on Lake Superior. Over the course of seven days we will circumnavigate the island then make the 16 kilometer crossing north between the island and the north shore. Once that adventure is complete we will turn right, keeping shore on our left and paddle back to Wawa. So who is this trip for? Well, due to its extreme remoteness and long crossing, this trip is aimed towards the intermediate and above paddler. You should have a firm grasp on self and group rescue as well as the physical stamina of a crossing of this nature. The thing that makes this trip unique is that it's a self-sufficient trip in that you are responsible for your own camping gear and meals. I won't be cooking for you but instead we will work as a group on decision making, risk management and route planning. It's perfect for those who have kayak tripping experience so doesn't need a guide to pamper them but appreciate the extra security blanket of somebody who has paddled the route before a couple of times. So what's out there to see? On a scale of 1 to wicked awesome, I would rank Michipicoten Island in the high fantastic to super cool awesome range. It's got: Wild Caribou Shipwrecks (at the water's surface) An abandoned fishing camp to explore Three lighthouses Sea Caves An abandoned copper mine from the 1880's. Extreme remoteness So for me the two real gems of the place are the wild caribou (which there are about 100+ head) and the abandoned copper mine on the northwest shore of the island. Back in the 1880's the mining company packed up and went home leaving…
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