The Inland Paddler: Welcoming Fall (and even Winter) Paddle Season. Really.

Forward into Fall Paddling Season
Forward into Fall Paddling Season In the past, I have groused about Fall and the inevitable coming of Winter, the advent of Neoprene Season, and the time change and shorter days. This year, it’s a little different. Well, not the part about the losing Daylight Savings Time...

The Inland Paddler: Chatta-Freakout Time 2017 Style

Chattajack Time, Ready or Not
Chattajack Time, Ready or Not If you are or ever have trained for the 31 mile "Inland Molokai to Oahu" that is the Chattajack race in Tennessee at the end of October, then you are probably starting to panic or have panicked right about now....

The Inland Paddler: Roads to Recovery

Waterproofing the Surf Injury
Waterproofing the Surf Injury I'll tell you what. No one likes to be on the Injured/Disabled List, but I'll take a laceration, like the one my sup surfboard fin gave me almost three weeks ago, over a soft tissue injury any day. You get almost...

The Inland Paddler: Filleted by the Fin

When SUP Fins Act Like Chef's Knives It was a nice, beautiful Carolina morning at Wrightsville Beach. A small rain squall was moving offshore, little to no wind and the waves looked pretty clean.  A perfect morning to have a long overdue sup surf session...

The Inland Paddler: Always Something to Learn

Dawn Patrol Paddle Surf Run
When A Dawn Patrol Paddle Surf Run Doesn't Go As Planned No matter what the conditions, there is always something to learn. Even if the board stays in the rack, your clothes stay dry and you go for a walk instead of a ride. There is always...

The Inland Paddler: Reconnecting with the Prone Zone

Rediscovering the Magic of Prone Paddling
Rediscovering the Magic of Prone Paddling Three years or so ago I started paddling prone, after being inspired by people like Julia Nicholls, Katie Elzer-Peters, Danielle Goldston,Chandler Bold and John Beausang.  I remember the first few times I tried to paddle my prone board in...

The Inland Paddler: When You Just Have To Go Coastal

Answering the Call of the Ocean
Answering the Call of the Ocean I get this question a lot: "You're going to the beach, just for a few hours?" Or: "Why would anyone drive a total of 4.5 hours just to surf for an hour or two?" If someone has to ask, they...

Gear Review: Watershed Westwater Drybag

Watershed Dry Bags Perfect for SUP Touring
Watershed Dry Bags Perfect for SUP Touring A good touring or expedition drybag needs to be durable, have a secure watertight closure and it needs to be easily secured to the deck of my touring board. Backpack straps for portaging or carrying the gear to...

The Inland Paddler: We are All Connected by Water

We are all connected by water
We are all connected by water. We say that a lot. But the more I paddle, and the more places I go to paddle, and the more people I meet, it becomes so much more evident.  And nowhere is that more apparent that here on...

Footwear Review: Bedrock Carin Pro Minimalist Sandal

Bedrock Minimal Sandals - Perfect in and out of the water
Bedrock Minimal Sandals - Perfect in and out of the water In my sup classes, I am often asked what you should wear on your feet while you sup. I absolutely, positively prefer to go barefoot because of board feel (ie a better connection with...

The Inland Paddler: What a difference a year makes! Recapping the 2017 Carolina Cup

OC2 View of the Carolina Cup
OC2 View of the Carolina Cup Last year, after training all winter in the OC1, which I was still new to, I made a big splash on my first-ever Graveyard course. Literally. I flipped or huli'd four, count 'em four, times before even making it...

The Inland Paddler: Carolina Cup Essential Kit

Essential Gear for Surviving the Carolina Cup Paddle Race
Essential Gear for Surviving the Carolina Cup Paddle Race I am really am making an effort to not take so much stuff with me when I travel. Especially to races.  But let's just face it - paddling is a gear-intensive sport. And a lot of...

The Inland Paddler: Summer Must Have Paddle Gear

Summer Must Have Paddle Gear
Summer Must Have Paddle Gear With the temps starting to warm up, I recently made the decision to retire the dry suits to the storage closet and am anxiously awaiting the moment when I can do the same with all the neoprene.  This is the...

The Inland Paddler: The Edge of 2017 – Getting Ready for the New Season

Carolina Cup Time
Carolina Cup Time Is Almost Here! It’s April. Finally! We are on the cusp of the 2107 racing season.  Oh sure, there’ve been a few events here and there, but this month, it ramps up and big time. For most of us on the East...

The Inland Paddler: Facing the Dragon

Paddle Surfing Notes
Paddle Surfing Notes Sometimes, Mother Ocean knows you need to learn something. Sometimes, well, all times really, in order to progress you have to leave your comfort zone and accept a bit of risk. Sometimes when you do that, you get worked. No matter how...

Gear Review: Hyperflex AMP shorts, Neoprene Shorts for the In-Between Season

Hyperflex AMP shorts
Hyperflex AMP shorts Sometimes, I think that I can will the weather to be warm and springlike if I just simply refuse to believe it's cold. Maybe I will wear flip flops all day - the sun's out.  My feet will be warm. (Even if they...

Drysuit Comparison: Starboard All Star SUP Suit v. Ocean Rodeo Heat

Cold Weather Options
Dress for the Water: A Comparison of Cold Weather Options The days are starting to get longer, and here in the South we've had some extremely unseasonably warm weather lately, but the water is still cold. My flatwater paddling venues still are well below the...

The Inland Paddler: Winter Surfing Magic

Sup Surfing with Friends
Sup Surfing with Friends - Peer Pressured into Epicness "Come on, you're gonna get wet anyway," one of my training partners and friends said as we were breaking away from the breakfast table at the Blockade Runner.  It was the Sunday after the Cold Stroke...

The Inland Paddler: You Never Forget Your First Race

do the Cold Stroke
Peer Pressured to do the Cold Stroke, but in a good way "You really need to do the Cold Stroke," my manager at REI said, not long after I was hired at the store in Raleigh. He started to tell me why. It's fun, It can...

The Inland Paddler: Winter Wonderland with Dolphins

deal with Winter
Last week at this time, much of eastern North Carolina was in the midst of its first Winter storm.  The below freezing temps and precipitation dumped a classic wintry mix of ice, sleet and snow on the Raleigh area.  Roads were bad, school was...

The Inland Paddler: Under the Weather – Strategies for Beating The Winter Cold

beating the winter cold
Let me just say up front: I am not a doctor or any other medical professional. But as a paddler who trains year round, I have a vested interest in learning all I can about beating the winter cold. Or  at least trying to....

The Inland Paddler: So Long, 2016, and Thanks for all the Fish

2016 came in like a lamb but seems to be leaving like a lion.  A rogue lion that has rampaged through the savannah of our childhoods, our pop culture and even our political landscape. A quick look at social media reveals that more than...

The Inland Paddler: Learning to Catch the Vertical Bumps…

Or...Lessons from the Climbing Wall. This offseason has been great.  I mean really great.  I have been listening to the aches and pains and backing off. I have been resting and making a concerted effort to get as close to eight hours of sleep each...

Gear Review: ACR Aqualink 406 MHz GPS Personal Locator Beacon

UPDATE: As of June, 2021 the MSRP of this valuable device has increased by about $40 since we wrote this review in 2016. Also, I have had a chance to paddle with this device several times, including multiple downwind runs on Maui and in the...

The Inland Paddler: All the Leaves are Brown and the Sky is Gray

Today is the Winter Solstice - well, at exactly 5:44 this morning. That moment where the sun shines at its most southern point, directly over the Tropic of Capricorn. The shortest day of the year, or the longest night, depending on your perspective. And it is...
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