"Don't be a dickhead"

4 years 1 month ago - 4 years 1 month ago #35022 by [email protected]
Mark Sundin of Expedition Kayaks started a podcast a little while ago and his most recent episode was clearly sparked by someone going out in conditions that were crazy/stupid.  Being at the centre of something of a universe I know that there was an incident in Sydney a week or so ago and I suspect that it and the podcast are related!

Anyway - have a listen.  It's thought provoking I think.  Basically, Mark is saying, "don't be a dickhead, you'll put others in danger and you'll spoil it for the rest of us."

Expedition Kayaks Podcast Episode 6

Some time ago I actually wrote some thoughts on a similar theme:

To go or not to go, extreme downwind decisions!

What do others think?


Currently Fenn Swordfish S, Epic V10 Double.
Previously: Think Evo II, Carbonology Zest, Fenn Swordfish, Epic V10, Fenn Elite, Red7 Surf70 Pro, Epic V10 Sport, Genius Blu, Kayak Centre Zeplin, Fenn Mako6, Custom Kayaks ICON, Brian's Kayaks Molokai, Brian's Kayaks Wedge and several others...
Last edit: 4 years 1 month ago by [email protected]. Reason: typo

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4 years 1 month ago #35027 by steveb
Replied by steveb on topic "Don't be a dickhead"
Listened to this in my recovery room today after surgery, not related to paddling, I thought it was well said. Youth bravado and invincibility can lead us to push limits, but also satisfy that deep desire within us to prove to ourselves that we can do it makes us push boundaries.

I am fortunate to live in a community that has a US Coast Guard station. Comforting to know that they are here if and when I was seriously in need of their assistance. I would never think of putting them or their equipment at risk because of my foolish behavior. I feel that educating new paddlers about risk assessment and practicing good judgment myself, are important lessons that need to be stressed. Proper clothing, skills and practice go a long way to safely paddle and enjoy year round paddling on the Great Lakes of the US.

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  • MCImes
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4 years 1 month ago #35033 by MCImes
Replied by MCImes on topic "Don't be a dickhead"
Good little podcast there. 

I totally agree with him that the "funnest" conditions to paddle in are not necessarily the "largest". Fun-ness plateaus when the sea is overly messy and a good downwind paddle turns into 'stay upright' practice. The funnest runs I've had were on 'big' days, but not the 'biggest' I've ever paddled in. Just saying, you not missing out on the greatest runs on the crazy days lots of times.

Considering how few rescues of surfski paddlers really occur compared to the number of runs done in large-to-crazy conditions I think is a testament that most of us have pretty decent judgement. 

He made a very good point that I take to heart - when things go wrong, they typically went wrong before you ever touched the water. I always check my boat leash, paddle leash, bung, both straps on the life jacket, phone, flashlight, etc before leaving the beach. I usually find one thing I missed in the first go. (usually one strap on the PFD or the Bung being secure)

My personal line for calling off a paddle is "In these conditions, can I get back in the boat after swimming". Like they tell you at the Gorge, if the answer is maybe or no, you have no business being out there. 

I hope to never call for rescue, and if I have to, I hope its because my boat broke up underneath me or a shark put a hole in it, not a lack of judgement. (If the boat breaks up underneath me, maybe that counts as lack of judgement though... no, ill call it equipment failure :) )  That would be horribly embarrassing at best, and a terrible guilt if anything negative happened to others as a result. Something for us all to keep in mind

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