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Washington Kayak Club
Fun and safe kayaking through trips, education, skill development, and conservation


March 2018  Join Our Club
Check out our Facebook Page for additional news, trips, training, and events!

 From the Prez

By Mike Germani
Welcome to spring!  This is the best time of year to shake-down gear and work on your skills for the upcoming paddling season.  

Play with that new Greenland paddle you ended-up with during the holidays, or figure-out which gaskets need to be replaced in your dry suit while submerged in cold Puget Sound waters, or patch the fiberglass you lost during and unexpected introduction to rock gardening last summer.  These slightly longer, warmer days are perfect to check-off items on your kayaking To-Do list.  
If you haven't hit the pools to work on that roll in time for whitewater season, it's not too late!  Pools are open through April.  Check calendar for dates and locations.  Thank you to the WKC volunteers who are there every weekend to assist!  

Then get out and start earning stickers for the WKC 7 Rivers Challenge - Sauk and Nisqually Rivers are coming up next!

And make sure to sign-up early to reserve space in these training courses: 

April 6-8: ACA Coastal Kayak Instructor Development
April 7-28: WKC Beginner Whitewater Kayaking (wait list only)
April 14-15: River Safety & Rescue with Casey Garland
June 1-3: WKC Basic Sea Kayaking 

Don't miss the next WKC Speaker Series on April 12: Circumnavigating Vancouver Island with Calvin Croll - an epic winter journey never before documented by man...

See you on the water!

 Featured Trip

Elliott Bay/Pike Place Market - March 24

We will launch from Seacrest Boathouse at 10:30 am, then paddle past the Space Needle to Pike Place market, have lunch and enjoy a leisurely afternoon on the waterfront, then paddle to Seacrest Marina and stretch our legs at Duwamish Head, before crossing Elliott Bay back to Seacrest Boathouse. 
When: March 24, 2018, 10:30 AM until 4:00 PM
Where: Seacrest Boathouse
1660 Harbor Ave. SW
Seattle, WA 98126
Contact: Aaron Shaw

Register Here


 ACA Coastal Kayak Instructor Development: April 6 - 8

For almost 40 years, the American Canoe Association (ACA) has been the leader in paddlesports education. The ACA's National Paddlesports Instruction Program is widely considered the "Gold Standard" in the U.S. and abroad. Through the certification process you will learn a specific and proven set of paddlesports best practices. 

Coastal Kayak Instructor Devel L2/L3: April 6-8

Register Here

 WKC Beginner Whitewater Kayaking Course: April 7-28

If you have been wanting to learn how to Whitewater Kayak, this course is for you!

The course is designed for the person with no prior boating experience. You will learn basic paddle and bracing strokes, how to roll a kayak, river hydrology, and safety, all in a relaxed and friendly environment from certified kayak instructors.

We teach this course only annually in March, before the spring rains and the snow melts.


Register Here

 River Safety & Rescue with Casey Garland: April 14 - 15

Casey Garland will again present a course on river safety, rope utilization and rescue techniques. Team leadership and rescue planning will also be covered to achieve the best results in a rescue effort.

This class is great for a beginning whitewater kayaker or even a kayaker looking to tune up their rescue skills.

2-day class (Sat/Sun); Max 12 participants

4/14 (Sa) 9am - 5pm
4/15 (Su) 9am - 5pm

Lectures will be held at Mike Grijalva's house Saturday morning before heading to the river. River work will likely be on the Cedar River, Landsburg site.

Register Here

 WKC Basic Sea Kayaking Course: June 1-3

Join us for a weekend of FUN and ADVENTURE as you develop your techniques and skills on the water!

This course will provide beginners with a safe and fun introduction to the sport of sea kayaking. You will develop, refresh, and improve basic skills which are essential to paddling:

- Effective Paddling Skills
- Safety and Hazard Awareness
- Capsize Recovery Techniques
- Navigation, Tides and Currents
- Gear, Equipment and Clothing

Register Here

WKC Pool Sessions: Tukwila, Shoreline, and Tacoma

Continue to build your skills at weekly pool sessions offered by WKC in Tukwila, Shoreline, and Tacoma.
The fee for weekly pool sessions is $10 for WKC members and $15 for non-members.

The pool sessions are typically available on alternating mornings and weekdays.  Be sure to check the schedule - and thank your pool coordinator for volunteering their time to make the pools available!

If you have any questions about pool sessions:

News and Events

 WKC Speaker Series 3: Circumnavigating Vancouver Island w/Calvin Croll: April 12

WKC has scheduled a series of four speaker presentations this season.  Please join us for the third evening in the series:

Series 3
On January 1, 2018 Calvin Croll left Orcas Island in a solo sea kayak returning 47 days later having completed the first documented winter circumnavigation of Vancouver Island. This was a journey of over 700 miles through the coldest, darkest, and windiest part of the year on the Pacific coast.

Calvin will share his story, photo’s and some of the steps he took to get himself physically and mentally prepared to take on a journey of this magnitude.

Time 6:00 – 9:00 pm
Date: April 12th 2018
Location: Odin Brewing Company, 402 Baker Blvd, Tukwila WA 98188

Read More

Paddling Film Festival World Tour: April 20

Since 2006, the Paddling Film Festival World Tour has been showcasing the very best paddling films. The World Tour screens in more than 120 cities around the world. Don't miss this year's best paddling films. You'll be inspired to explore rivers, lakes and oceans, push extremes, embrace the paddling lifestyle and appreciate the wild places.

Date: Friday, April 20, 2018 07:00 PM
Venue: American Legion Post 160 - 3618 
SW Alaska St, Seattle
Ticket Price $ 15.00

Hosted by Mountain to Sound Outfitters

Purchase Tickets

 Northwest Paddling Festival / Call for Volunteers: May 11 -1 2

The largest event of its kind in the Pacific Northwest, the festival brings paddle sports retailers, manufacturers and athletes together in one location! Attendance is free to the public!

Featuring more than 60 paddle sports businesses offering canoes, kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, paddling equipment, accessories and gear, the Northwest Paddling Festival is a can’t-miss event for any paddling enthusiast.

Event Details

Experienced Kayakers Needed!!

The Northwest Paddling Festival is just around the corner. Once again, they are looking for experienced kayakers willing to volunteer for a Safety Boat shift (or two!) Contact Andree Hurley to sign-up.

 Following Freya: Circumnavigation of North America

Last year Freya Hoffmeister began her legendary circumnavigation of North America in Seattle, kayaking north to Kodiak, then returning to Seattle and paddling south to Oregon. This month, she resumes her trip.  She plans to paddle south for three months to California before returning to Alaska and continuing through the Northwest Passage.  She will repeat south and north legs yearly, until she arrives in New York.

Follow her progress here:

Follow Freya

Bon Voyage, Freya!

Kayak Polo is Back!

Kayak Polo is starting again at the Tukwila pool!

WKC's NEW kayak polo chair, Chris Brubaker, has been kind enough to organize dates and invite people to come down and try it out - every other Sunday!  Check event calendar for dates:

Tukwila Pool
4414 S 144th St
Tukwila, WA 98168
8:45-10:45 am

Cost: $10 for WKC members, $15 for non-members.

Looking for members to join the team in a tournament in San Leandro in April!

Baja Kayak Fest: April 13- 19

Sea kayak symposiums are designed for those wanting to take their skills to another level, in challenging ocean conditions.

This is a rough water event for experienced sea kayakers. You don't have to be a super star, but you should be comfortable paddling 10-15 miles in a day and are well-practiced at capsize recovery techniques. You should be comfortable in small surf and bumpy water. Our location is a rocky peninsula that juts into the Pacific Ocean and provides the perfect playground for kayakers! We will offer day trips for pure fun and rock-garden play, as well as skills development courses. Top coaches from the Pacific coast will mentor groups of 4-6 paddlers at a time!

Details & Registration

Other fantastic regional Kayak Symposiums

Bay of Fundy Sea Kayak Symposium
Storm Gathering

 WKC San Juan Seven Challenge

We love circumnavigating islands and want to encourage more paddlers to join the fun, so we have launched the San Juan Seven Challenge. 
The seven islands selected for the San Juan Seven challenge are San Juan, Orcas, Lopez, Cypress, Guemes, Lummi, and Stuart

You can circumnavigate the islands in any order that you like and can take as much time as you need or want to circumnavigate each island. To qualify for badges you need to circumnavigate the island during a WKC trip that has been announced on the WKC website.

Upcoming WKC Trips:

Contact Steven Exe for more information.

San Juan Seven Challenge

 WKC Seven Rivers Challenge

WKC members who participate in club trips to the seven designated rivers will receive collective paddle/boat stickers designed by a whitewater kayaker and artist Zeus Rudner.
Challenge yourself to get all seven stickers! When a member completes all seven rivers, he/she will receive a finisher’s sticker. To make it easy to keep track, participants must register for the club trip online.

The designated rivers and in Seven Rivers challenge are: Nisqually, Nooksack, Sauk, Sol Duc, Stillaguamish,Wenatchee, and White Salmon
Upcoming WKC Trips:
Mar 3 - Middle SF Stillaguamish III+
March 24: Sauk 3+
Check Events Calendar for more dates
If you have any questions or suggestions about the Seven Rivers Challenge program, contact:
Kanako Iwata-Eng


 Looking to Buy/Sell Used Paddling Gear?

Maybe kayaking isn't your sport.  Need to sell some gently used gear?  Looking to purchase some paddling treasure?  Check out the WKC Classifieds Forum to list your items or to purchase kayaking gear from fellow paddlers.  Easy to follow instructions for posting items included below:


Schedule for ACA and PNA (formerly BCU) Paddler Certifications

Thinking of taking your paddling skills to the next level?  Become ACA or PNA (formerly BCU) certified this season. Special awards signify specific paddling, safety and leadership skills at different levels and in various craft. These awards provide a way to track your own progress as a paddler, and give others a reliable indication of your preparedness for trips and further trainings. Improve your skills or become a certified coach and lead others on the water:
ACA Certification
Founded in 1880, The American Canoe Association (ACA) is a national nonprofit organization serving the broader paddling public by providing education related to all aspects of paddling.  River, coastal, and surf kayaking certifications offered.

PNA Certification
Paddlesports North America (PNA) was formed in 2013 to provide access to British Canoeing (formerly known as the British Canoe Union or BCU) paddler awards and coaching certifications in North America, including canoe, kayak and stand up paddleboard.

 Recent Trip Reports

 Check out the Trip Reports  tab to see more WKC kayaking adventures.  

Lake Union Argosy Lighted Boat Parade: Dec 23

 By Mike Greengo 

Twas the eve of the eve of Christmas in 2017, when the Argosy Cruises of Seattle, Washington were featuring their finale event, the 68th Annual Christmas Ship Festival, leaving Kirkland at 7 PM and arriving at Gas Works Park at 8:45 PM. The Argosy boats would embark from Kirkland, up north on Lake Washington, and then head west through the Montlake Cut, taking a half hour break in Portage Bay, before continuing onto Lake Union, the finale point with stopping at Gas Works Park, before heading back to Kirkland.

Read More

 Team Petty Adventure: Humptulips

 By Kanako Iwata-Eng

The Olympic Peninsula is known for its rain, but whenever I go to the Humptulips Narrows (Class 3), it is sunny, and my fourth visit to this river on November 18, 2017 was no exception. Captain Bill Petty, Bob Metzger from Olympia, and I launched around 12:30 p.m. under the bright sun.

Read More

 Team Petty Adventure: British Columbia 2017

 By Kanako Iwata-Eng

This is our fearless leader Bill Petty’s 40th year of paddling. He has been leading annual whitewater road trips to British Columbia almost every year for the past 28 years, and BC continues offering endless rivers he has never run. To paddle unknown rivers again this year, the Team headed to the northern capital of Prince George this time.

Read More

 Three Sport Loop: Lake Chelan

 By Rich Feffer

Rich and his wife recently completed a loop trip in the east and north Cascades -  kayaking from Manson (near Chelan) to Stehekin, hiking through to Highway 20, and then cycling back to the start. Mileages were 46, 21, and 105 respectively, totaling 172 over 8 days. They enthusiastically recommend this trip if you like to combine multiple sports and get a good weather window (especially for the paddling portion).  Beautiful scenery as you watch the landscape change from desert to mountains and back.

Read More

 Fall in the Wall for First Timers

By Shanna Gachen

Shout-out to one of our lifetime members, Jon Almquist, who never stops volunteering his time to help others adventure and experience our beautiful rivers. Whether it's helping out with the whitewater class, heading up skill builder trips right after class, leading adventure trips to the beautiful Olympic Peninsula or pushing any level paddler to their next level - he's always game!
Thanks Jon for all your guidance!

Read More
See more trips on the Washington Kayak Club Facebook Page!

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Copyright 2014 Washington Kayak Club

President: Mike Germani
Secretary: Bill Porter
Treasurer: Jackie Brown
Editor: Brenna McVety

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