Monday, July 30, 2007

Monday Morning Wave

Photo: Sean Davey

One mile away is the ocean. A quick glance? Hmm. Bills to pay, grocery shopping, chores, work, 'things to do list'. Maybe 60, 70 years on this planet? Hmm?? Life is to short. Things to Do: #1 - Take 5 & drive by the ocean

- Billy Yeager -

Derek Hynd, a man of uncanny foresight who saw the power of the fish far, far before the masses, makes the right choice at the right time. Matha's, King Island, Oz.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Flat Seymour

Remember Flat Stanley? Well...he can move over for FLAT SEYMOUR!

In 1981, "Seymour of Anchorage" was adopted as the Anchorage’s ambassador of goodwill, inviting people throughout the world to get wild about Anchorage!

This is clearly something peculiar to Anchorage. The idea being is that you take Flat Seymour and photograph him in some wild places around Alaska and other exotic destinations throughout the world to post in Flat Seymour's online photo album. Even though it appears to be something only for locals, I'm sure we all could have some fun with him!

Monday, July 23, 2007

Monday Morning Wave

Photo: Al Mackinnon

High in the mountains, deep in the earth the roots of a koa tree cling Lono sends the strong wind, and the Koa bows down to Lono and falls. Lono sends his people to carve the trunk... they carry the surfboard from the mountain down to the water edge... She is was of the earth, but now of the sea pu hale nalu

- Bear Woznick -

Wake up and smell the froth! Hossegor morning rush hour with traffic moving smoothly in both directions.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Objects of Desire

As the great Antipodean artist, Rolf Harris might ask "Can you tell what it is yet?"

On my recent travels to Australia I came across another little object of desire

This simple foldable silicon bowl is made by Kathmandu and if the blurb is to be believed, quite robust - heat resistant & oven proof to +220°C and its microwave & dishwasher safe too!

Its now in the pile of stuff I'll be taking to Alaska on my forthcoming sea kayak adventure

I'll let you know how I get on with it along with the Spork I'm taking and my Nalgene Firefly light

Expeditions are great for stuff like this :0)

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Four Quarters of Light

Brian Keenan's fascination with Alaska began as a small boy, while reading Jack London's wondrous, "Call of the Wild". With a head full of questions about its inspiring landscape and a heart informed by his love of desolate and barren places, Brian Keenan sets out for Alaska to discover its four geographical quarters, from snowmelt in May to snowfall in September, and en route, finds a land as fantastical as a fairytale, but whose vastness has a very peculiar type of allure...From dog-mushing on a frozen lake beneath the whirling colours of the aurora borealis, to camping in a two dollar tent in the tundra of the arctic circle, Brian Keenan seeks out the ultimate wilderness experience and along the way, encounters hard-core survivalists who know what struggle and endurance mean, from their daily battle with nature to exist. He discovers that true wilderness is as much a state of mind, as it is a place. And ultimately to make Alaska home, one must surrender to it.

This is a wonderful book that brings alive the daily struggles of those who have chosen to live in Alaska. It is full of colourful descriptions of the people and the environment in which they live that draws you in and makes you feel like you know them personally. It also describes a very personal journey for Brian Keenan and moved me to tears on a number of occasions.

Its certainly put me in the mood for my first big adventure to this wild place. Something I'm looking forward to immensely

Monday, July 16, 2007

Monday Morning Wave

Photo: Brian Nevins

Once I recognized one of our tribe, even walking through times square I saw another member of our tribe... and we recognized each other... by the saltiness, by the tan, by the look of adventure we knew each other
- Bear Woznick -

These lines started as tiny capillary ruffles far out at sea, and this guy somehow sensed their imminent arrival in the form of predictable bands of very rideable swell. The whole damn thing’s miraculous, isn't it?

Friday, July 13, 2007

Top Tips - Skegs

Photo: Geoff Murray

A skeg is a fixed rudder that protrudes down from the keel near to the stern of a boat to help it run straight. Kayaks are often fitted with a retractable skeg that can be hoisted into a slot in the hull under the stern. The kayak will be most manoeuvrable when the skeg is fully retracted. Dropping the skeg a little will help prevent weather-cocking (undesired turning to face the wind) and when fully dropped will make it easier to turn to face away from the wind. To face the wind you'll need to raise the skeg completely. A skeg is normally adjusted from the cockpit by cable slide or line and cleat at cruising speed because the effect at speed will be different from the effect on a stationary or slow-moving kayak.

Photo: Douglas Wilcox

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Welsh Weather Forecasting

Photo: Alistair Davidson

Why make things complicated?

Here's a simple way of following weather patterns!

Monday, July 09, 2007

Monday Morning Wave

Photo: Craig Peterson

"I paddled over the shoulder of a set wave and an instant later a guy popped up from his duck dive a moment behind me. I knew him well, we had surfed together often. But we were 12,000 miles from home, and neither of us knew the other would be there. I said, "Hey." And he said, "What's up?" Like there was nothing out of the ordinary, like it was no surprise that either of us should pack our bags, fly for two days, and boat for another to surf this place on the other side of the planet and not expect to run into one another. Surfing is like that. The commitment is like that."
- Gary Sirota -

The-Secret-Spot-That-Everybody-Knows-About, aka Everybodys, somewhere on the west coast of Ireland. Don't ask the guy bottom turning on the red board, Barry Britton. He's probably surfed it alone for 30 years.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Top Tips - Using a Tow-Line

Photo: Adriam Trendall

The occasional use of a tow-line has made many a journey more comfortable, and many a situation safer. But how long should a tow-line be? If you're paddling on calm water with no wind then a tow-line should be long enough for following kayak to be clear of the stern of the one towing. If you're towing with the wind and waves at your back the line should be long enough for the person towing to avoid having the following kayak ride a wave into them. If there are only two of you and the person needing a tow is feeling unstable, then the line needs to be so short the person being towed can hold the stern of the other kayak for support.

Photo: Adriam Trendall

These examples give an indication of the extremes you might meet. You can cope with most situations with a line 15 metres long, but you might consider some extra line you can quickly add for use in a following sea and a really short tether for close tows.

Photo: Adriam Trendall

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Home & Away

The Harbour Bridge

The Opera House

Sydney Harbour Kayaks

Funky Formations

Cliff top walk to Bondi

Big Wednesday at Tamarama

Surf's Up at Manly Beach

Avonmore Hotel, Randwick

Exotic Birds-1


Exotic Birds-2

The Three Sisters, Blue Mountains

Mark in a hole

Coogee Beach

Palm Beach

Monday, July 02, 2007

Monday Morning Wave

Photo: Brian Nevins

"A perfect morning at my favorite California beachbreak. I only shot for about an hour before I had to paddle out myself." Brian Nevins wrestles with the surf photographer's eternal professional dilemma. Tough choices.