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

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December 2014   
Check out our new Kayaking Resources tab: One stop for all the information you need to go paddling! 

 From the Prez

 By Sybille Fleischmann
Happy Holidays from Germany!

On December 6th along the river Alz I caught Santa's helpers taking some time off to go paddling. Paddlers from DAV in Munich, Germany officially closed the 2014 paddling season with a family friendly St. Nikolaus Paddle on the river Alz, costume optional, warm clothes mandatory.

If you haven't seen a paddling Santa Claus yet, you have a good chance to catch one at the Deception Pass Dash on December 14th. Each year at least one Santa Claus joins the race or helps as a safety boater. I expect Santa Claus won't miss it this year either. You don't have to be a racer to have fun at the Dash. Hike in beautiful Bowman Bay, cheer on the paddlers and join the festivities after the race. 
Register for the Dash

Best wishes for a wonderful holiday season with lots of paddling fun!

 Featured Trip

Winter Break Paddle - Orcas Island SKII/III: December 27 - 29

Come to Orcas Island to unwind after the holidays.  Paddle, ponder, and plan your New Year's resolutions.  Two days will be spent paddling on saltwater - location dependent upon conditions.  Then one day on beautiful Mountain Lake in Moran State Park.  Expect wind and cold.  Drysuit required.  Warm beverages encouraged.  Let's paddle!
When:  December 27 - 29
Where:  Orcas Island
Skill Level:  SK II/III
Contact:  Bill Porter


ACA Whitewater Certification Course: Jan 29, 30, 31 and Feb 7, 8

Have you ever considered becoming an American Canoe Association (ACA) certified kayak instructor or want to take your paddling to a higher level? If you love kayaking and are passionate about helping others experience the magic of this sport, then you should give this course some serious thought. 
We have invited:

J.R. Weir
Owner of Sundance Kayak School

to teach the
ACA Instructor Certification Course! 

January 29, 30, 31st and February 7th & 8th.

 Pool Sessions: Tukwila, Shoreline & Tacoma

Continue to build your skills at weekly pool sessions offered in Tukwilla, Shoreline, and Tacoma.  
The fee for weekly pool sessions is $10 for WKC members and $15 for non-members.  
Check the Event Calendar for upcoming dates:
If you have any questions about pool sessions:

 News and Events

 9th Annual Deception Pass Dash: December 13 - 14

The PNW's most adventurous winter race! Each December, this challenging 6 mile course takes paddlers through the swirling waters of Deception Pass! You don't need to be an expert paddler to participate - race organizers simply ask that you prepare (practice paddling, rolling, rescues, etc) and make safe decisions about your paddling ability on the day of the race (based on actual conditions). All racers should have significant paddling experience and proven self-rescue skills. $55 per racer (price goes up to $70 on 11/20/14)

11/15 Update:

- Racing clinics and Demos will be held on Saturday, and the race is Sunday morning (starting gun at 8:40am).

- Dash organizers are looking for volunteers to assist with the race. If you are interested, please contact:

     Dave Ortland:
     Steven Exe:

Make plans to race with other WKC members in the discussion forum, then register for the event:

 Body Boat Blade Launches New Online ProShop

Shawna Franklin and Leon Somme announce the opening of their new kayaking pro-shop this month:

"A lot of blood, sweat and tears (although mostly from laughing) went into building our online shop. It's exciting to finally see it live. Check it out and let us know what you think! What sets us apart is that we use and believe in every item that we sell. We don't carry a lot, only gear that passed the test of adventure. We want our store to be not only a one-stop paddling shop but a trusted expert and continual source of information that will help you on the journey to be a better paddler."

Check out the end of year sale!

 2014 Northwest Whitewater Slalom Cup Series Results

By Jennie Goldberg
Congratulations to all and thanks for participating in the 2014 Northwest Whitewater Slalom Cup Series! Of the 26 participants, most rated it one of the very best Nooksack races ever! Definitely voted the warmest weekend we've ever had. Flows were not only consistent for the weekend (unusual for the Nooksack River in October) but also a great flow for slalom. With a recent history of NOT being able to hold the race due to government shut-down or too much or too little water, it was a real treat to  enjoy the Nooksack.  

 WWTA Online Trails Data Scheduled to Open to the Public: January 2015

WWTA is excited to announce that all detailed online water trail site information will be OPEN TO ALL-COMERS as of January 2015!

 Storm Gathering USA - Trinidad, CA: March 6 - 8

Storm Gathering USA events are sea kayak symposiums designed for those wanting to take their skills to the next level. Organized by Helen Wilson and Mark Tozer, the symposium aims to bring together sea kayakers from all over the globe to celebrate the ocean that we love so much. Classes will emphasize skills development for paddling in challenging conditions, which may include surf, rock gardens and open crossings. Coaches this year include; Nigel Foster, Rob Avery, Bryant Burkhardt, Cate Hawthorne, Pat Kuthe, Ben Lawry, and many more...

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 new WKC Classifieds Forum to list your items or to purchase kayaking gear from fellow paddlers.  Easy to follow instructions for posting items included below:

San Juan Preservation Trust: 2014 Annual Update

Thank you for your volunteering your time in 2014. This year, the SJPT permanently protected an additional seven properties, including 230 acres and 7,146 feet of shoreline on four islands. These include 95 acres of working farmland (on Lopez and San Juan); 60 acres of shoreline salmon and forage fish habitat (on Stuart Island); and 75 acres in three forested parcels that connect and expand previously-protected Preservation Trust lands (on Orcas, San Juan and Lopez).  Future acquisition projects include land on Waldron, Orcas, Blakely, Sinclair, San Juan, Shaw and Henry Island (among others).


Washington State Ferries Now Accepting Reservations

The WSDOT is now accepting reservations for the following ferry routes:
Current Routes:
- Port Townsend/Coupeville
- Anacortes/Sidney B.C.
- Anacortes/San Juans for Executive (commercial only)
- Anacortes / San Juan Islands (beginning Jan. 5, 2015)
Reservation holders are prioritized.  Up to 80 percent of sailing capacity can be allocated to reservations, which means drive-up passengers may wait through multiple sailings for space, if they did not make reservations ahead of time.  Keep this in mind for upcoming kayaking trips and plan ahead.

 Paddlesports North America: BCU Assessment Calendar

Thinking of earning a BCU paddling award this year?  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. PNA emphasizes paddler proficiency and safety as well as environmental awareness while promoting broader participation in paddlesports, including canoe, kayak and stand up paddleboard.

R2AK - Do You Have What It Takes?:  June 4

Race to Alaska.  Sail, row, paddle 750 cold water miles from Port Townsend to Ketchikan.  First place prize is $10,000.  Do you have what it takes?
Strategize with fellow WKC members, then register if you dare...

Canoe & Kayak Calendar of Events for 2014


Check out cool kayaking events going on around the rest of the country.  

Link to Events

 Recent Trip Reports

 Improving Combat Rolls


By Kanako Iwata-Eng

I am not a certified kayak instructor. As a graduate of the WKC Beginner Class in 2012, I don’t have a lot of experience, either. My paddle strokes, boat control, and river reading skills need improvement, and I flip a lot. But I have one skill that often wows my fellow boaters – my combat rolls.

 God's Pocket

By Dave Ortland

Five paddle pals and I explored the north end of Vancouver Island for seven days last August. We traveled from Port Hardy to Cape Sutil and back while circumnavigating Nigei Island. This area is becoming a very popular place to paddle, and for good reason. It is easily accessible, the scenery is magnificent, and the paddling is fairly protected from the large swell of the outer coast. One must be prepared for windy and rainy conditions. Fortunately we did not encounter much wind or rain. Hopefully this trip report will help you plan your own excursion.


 Lake Crescent: Winter Paddle

By Brenna McVety

Lake Crescent is a deep, glacially created lake known for its brilliant blue, clear water. It is located in the Olympic National Park, approximately 17 miles west of Port Angeles. It is about a 2 1/2 to 3 hour drive from Seattle, including a scenic ride on the Bainbridge ferry. This is a great winter paddle to consider, when conditions at the coast become too rough.

 Hood Canal Salmon and Winter Bird Watching Paddle

By Linda Cooley
The winter birds have returned, the salmon have begun their migration upstream, and power boats are tethered and dry-docked for the winter. Grab your camera and binoculars and join us on the quieter side of the Salish Sea to enjoy nature’s bounty.


 Anything But Shopping Paddle

By Bill Porter

Had a blast albeit a chilly blast on today's 'Anything but Shopping' paddle with great friends Julia, Tina, Zee, Rob, Mike, Mark and Jon. We had no trouble finding a parking place, there were no long lines in fact we had the whole beach to ourselves. Yes, it was a bit breezy, yes it rained hard the whole 3+ hours we where on the water, yes the hard rain did include occasional snow flakes. Yes, Mukilteo Mike, the resident sea lion and his harbor seal friends did seem to question our sanity but all had a great time................and we are thawed out now !
 View More Trip Reports


Copyright 2014 Washington Kayak Club

President: Sybille Fleischmann
Secretary: Bill Porter
Treasurer: Jackie Brown
Editor: Brenna McVety,

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