Congratulations Dawn, Alan, and Paul!

Way to go team Mosquito!

At this time, we are in Florida too. Wish we could have coordinated seeing them come into the finish. The winds and weather have been great for hiking, paddling, and sailing  the last couple days, but I am glad we are sleeping inside during the storms.

Amazing paddling and sailing!

Well I certainly expected Dawn and her son Alan to do well in the Ultimate Florida Challenge, but I'm always amazed at the stories that come out of this race.

Check out their blog here: 29-hours-of-sailing-to-Ft-Clinch.html

Soon I'll be in Florida sailing around St Lucie inlet again in the Cobra Expedition.

Suddenly it is spring!

Forget All the wetsuit/drysuit/slpashtop stuff! Today I paddled in neoprene shorts and regular wicking cool weather shirts!  My glasses fogged up a couple times, because I got so warm.  I actually considered taking a dip in the cool water one time because I got so warm.  The air temperature was near 80 and the water temperature was near 60!

It still makes sense to bring a change of clothes and long swims and storms could make you really cold, but for the most part swims are not dangerous at these temperatures.

After the paddle on Falls Lake we went to Crabtree Tavern in Raleigh and had a good meal.

I'm so happy Spring is here!  Next week we will be in Florida to visit family and paddle some more!

No SPOT for me!

More and more Paddlers, Sailors, and Kayak Sailors are carrying communications equipment with them on the water.

For years I've carry a handheld VHF at the coast and a Cell phone on inland fresh waters. The VHF is very handy where I paddle at the coast of North Carolina because the Coast Guard has  high towers and good radios and I can communicate with them anywhere I go.  I can also communicate with any boat I see and some that I cannot see. So for the places I go the VHF works well.

On the lakes and inland rivers vhf does not work well and the best way to communicate in the past has been to hike to high ground and get a cell phone signal.  I've been able to get a text out from anywhere in the state in the past year be walking to the top of the nearest hill.  Down on the river cell phones do not work as well.

I've seen SPOT's used quite a bit for tracking of races and adventurers, but they do not seem reliable enough to be life safety equipment.

EPIRB technology has gotten smaller and cheaper and now you can get a PLB that is very reliable for about $300.

What worries me is that folks think they can press the button and get help just like when you call AAA from the city for your car.  In the wilderness you may be hours or days from help. I worry that folks who have these items may take unneeded risks that they should not.

In almost every case I am familiar with I feel that training and prevention would have been better than carrying the SPOT, PLB, or VHF and depending on the help of others.  I'm interested in others take on this so if you disagree, please be sure to leave a comment.

Hilarious Video

Greenland Kayaker Video

This video above is so funny!  I think they have seen me paddling my Tarpon 160 with my Lumpy Greenland Paddle.

I'll have to try sitting on the bottom and paddling it upside down next time I go to the pool!

Following the Watertribe

I wanted to share the links I'm using to follow the current Watertribe races in Florida.  If you'll look at this page in the left hand column you will see links for the Watertribe and for Duckworks where you will find a lot of information about the race.  I've been checking the forums on the Watertribe site regularly.  On the right hand column of this page is a link to the Log of the Spartina where you will find updates on Dawn and Alan's progress.  Hope this helps.

Watertribe is having an amazing 2012 Challenge in Florida right now.

The Watertribe is having an incredible challenge this month! All my North Carolina friends have had to drop out because of the conditions, injury or illness.  These are the toughest paddlers I know.  Dawn and Alan in Mosquito are still doing well but having to bail every two hours. You can read about them on the water tribe website or at the Log of Spartina here:

Come on Dawn and Alan!  Hope you do really well in you trip around the entire state! Yes i said the entire state which will include at least 40 miles of portaging their boat over land without the help of a car!

I always get really excited by the Everglades Challenge because when the competitors come back from Florida they BRING SPRING with them!

Given that we have already had some really warm weather I'm hoping that they will go ahead and bring SUMMER!  Come on Dawn and Alan!  Bring the HEAT!