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

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March WKC Newsletter

Published on 3/6/2016


March 2016
Check out our Kayaking Resources tab: One stop for all the information you need to go paddling!

From the Prez

By Sybille Fleischmann
WKC Website goes mobile
Our trip leaders and special events coordinators have planned fabulous events for March, from whale watching adventures to white water trips and spring skill clinics. On March 31 we invite you all to join us for our next General Meeting with Nigel Foster who will present stories and images from his solo kayaking adventures crossing the 40-mile wide Hudson Strait to Northern Labrador.

Did you notice that you can now browse the WKC events, news and trip reports not only on your computer, but also on your mobile device? Thanks to our paddling friend and WKC webmaster Brenna, you can now use your smartphone to read trip reports, plan your kayaking adventures, and check where the next pool sessions will be hosted and whom to contact with questions. We hope this new service will make it even easier for you to plan your trips and join us on the water.
Happy paddles,

Featured Trip

Possession Sound Whale Hunt: March 19

We will go where the grey whales go, in the hopes of viewing one.

Trip plan:
Launch from Mukilteo around 10am, head toward where the whale boats are (Hat Island, Whidbey Island). The nice sandy beaches and the muddy bottoms in this area are a favorite place for whales to feed.

The crossing to Whidbey or Hat Islands is 2+ nautical miles. Be prepared for a little chop from unpredictable spring weather. Total distance covered is about 9 miles. The route may be adjusted according to weather and interest of the group.
When: March 19
Where: Mulkiteo Boat Launch
Trip Leader: David Ortland
See our Events Calendar for more upcoming trips!


WKC Beginner Whitewater Kayaking Course: March 5 - 26

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.The class combines 7 sessions of classroom, pool, and lake/river instruction.
This course always fills up - Registration begins January 1st.

WKC Spring Skills Clinics

Are you ready to paddle this season? Dust off your kayak and brush up on your SK and WW skills this spring in one of these FREE clinics offered by WKC.
Don't let this be you:Watch Video
SK - Spring Warm Up Paddle #1: March 19
Ease into the paddling season with a 5-7 mile paddle along Lake Sammamish shoreline.This is the first in a series of several fitness paddles to be offered this spring.
SK - Rescue Rodeo: March 26
Dress for cold water immersion, bring lunch, warm drink, boat, paddle, PFD, paddle float, tow belt etc.We will practice on five solo rescues and five partnered rescues on Lake Goodwin.
WW - Surf Clinic: April 3
This will be a beginner to intermediate clinic on basic river surfing skills on the Green River. We'll practice skill exercises and hopefully do a good bit of surfing on small to medium waves - the ones that can teach us the most.
WW - Down River Play Day Clinic: April 16
The first session will be considered an intro day, where we will work on having fun in rapids instead of just getting through them. The day will consist of possibly multiple laps on a single rapid or lapping the entire section of river we decide to use.

WKC Basic Sea Kayaking Class 2016: June 3 - 6

This course will provide beginners with a safe and fun introduction to the sport of sea kayaking.
When: June 3 - 6
Where: Coronet Bay Environmental Learning Center Deception Pass State Park
Contact: Rhonda Schwab
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

Pool Sessions: Tukwila, Shoreline, and Helene Madison

The fee for weekly pool sessions is $10 for WKC members and $15 for non-members.
Tukwila Pool will be open every Sunday in February, March and April.We are looking for volunteers to help out with this additional opening.If you are willing to volunteer please contact Steve Exe at

Helene Madison Pool starting Thursday, February 25th, will be open evenings 8:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. every other Thursday. Look on the schedule on WKC website for upcoming dates.

Shoreline Pool will reopen in October 2016. It is closed due to maintenance.

Check the Event Calendar for upcoming dates:

Additional Upcoming Kayaking Courses

Did you take abeginner class through the club and want to continue building your skills?Or have you been paddling for years and want to expand your knowledge?
Photo credit to Gary Luhm
Consider taking a specialized class with one of Washington's local experts and learn a few new tricks to make your friends jealous:
Nigel Foster
- Directional Control - March 19 & 26
- Forward Stroke - March 20
Body Boat Blade
- Coastal Navigation - March 26
- Ocean Currents - April 4 - 5
- Performance Paddling - April 9 - 10

News and Events

Learn to Roll with Free Viewing of Kent Ford Video: March 11 - 13

FREE online viewing of the DVD, The Kayak Roll, available for viewing by WKC Members on
March 11, 12 & 13th.

The 2016 Beginner Whitewater Course started March 5th and during the course we always show this video to our students. This year instead of just having a classroom viewing we have teamed up with Kent Ford and Performance Video to offer this free showing of
The Kayak Roll (part I) to not only our students, but to the whole membership!
Program Details

WKC Cedar River Races: March 19 - 20

Washington Kayak Club Cedar River Races are March 19-20th.  Downriver race on Saturday. Open slalom practice on the gates all day. Slalom Race on Sunday. I hope you're as excited as we are to kick off 2016!  EVERYONE IS WELCOME.
Volunteers needed Sunday, March 13th 10:30 AM for workparty at the Cedar River slalom gate site at Landsburg. Put up a few new gates, repair what's there, set the race course and work on trail making. Let's get the work done this weekend, then we'll be able to maximize our FUN for the Cedar River Race! 
Bring: gloves, pocket knife, blackberry machetes, and your boat to test the water afterwards!


WKC General Meeting: Nigel Foster Presents Stepping Stones on March 31

Attend a WKC General Meeting. Learn more about the club. Meet fellow paddlers. And enjoy an evening with Nigel Foster as he presents Stepping Stones, stories and images from his kayaking adventures paddling solo through Baffin Island, Labrador, and Ungava. A journey that would eventually cross the 40-mile wide Hudson Strait to Northern Labrador: a journey he barely survived...
Event is open to all

When:Thursday, March 31
7:00 to 9:00 p.m.

Where:Newcastle Library
12901 Newcastle Way
Newcastle, WA 98056

Port Angeles Kayak and Film Festival: April 22 - 24

This is the only event like it in the country, highlighting and promoting ALL categories of paddling, from sea and lake to river and surf. Only at the Port Angeles Kayak & Film Festival can you learn about kayak fishing, take a Kayak rolling class, get educated on tides and currents, learn how to land your craft in surf, watch remarkable films of folks doing amazing feats, and enjoy Saturday evening’s keynote presentation by award winning adventure and filmmaker Justine Curgenven!

Alder Creek Spring Paddle Festival: April 23 - 24

Warm-up for the coming paddling season with Alder Creek Kayak at the 24th Annual Spring Paddle Festival at Vancouver Lake Park. FREE demos and classes. Try before you buy. Take advantage of special deals during the Spring Sale. Enjoy the annual Jantzen Beach Jamboree featuring live music, BBQ, and beverages!
All events are free and open to the public.

Northwest Paddling Festival: May 6 - 7

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

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.

WKC San Juan Seven Challenge

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:
March 18 & 26:Cypress Island
April 23:Lummi Island
Contact Steven Exe for more information.

San Juan Seven Challenge

WKC Seven Rivers Challenge

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.
• The launch date of the program is April 1, 2016.
• No end date is set at this time.
• You can run any section of these rivers in any order.
• You must be a WKC member and register to the trip online.

It's Always Sunny on the Cispus

By Michael Deckert
The lower Cispus River is a beautiful class II-III whitewater run passing through old growth forests and open vistas.

The Problem..
Lewis County Public Utility District (LCPUD) destroyed the big-water run through Cowlitz Falls, inundated the most beautiful confluence in the state, and flooded the lower mile and a half of the Cispus River. In exchange for destroying these recreation resources with their dam and reservoir, LCPUD was required to provide a take-out facility at the head of the Cispus Arm of the reservoir.

2016 Kayaking Events

Don't miss out on these great opportunities to enjoy the water.Start planning your 2016 kayaking adventures now!
Sea Kayaking Event Links and Dates:
Baja Kayak Fest April 15 - 18
Anglesey Sea Kayak Symposium May 2 - 8
SSTIKS (S.Sound Trad. Inuit Kayak Symposium) June 10 - 12
Hobuck Hoedown October 1 - 2
Gales Storm Gathering - Michigan October 6 - 9
Lumpy Waters - Oregon October 7 - 9
WW Kayaking Event Links and Dates:
Gordon Creek Race Vancouver Island March 19
Northwest Creeking Competition April 9 - 10
Alder Creek Kayak Festival April 23 - 24
Green River Clean-up April 30
Bend Paddle Festival April 30
Chilliwack River Festival May 6
Little White Salmon Race May 7
Lochsa River Madness May 27 - 30
North Fork Championships
June 16 - 18
Payette River Games June 17 - 19
Wausau Jackson Freestyle Clinic & Midwest Freestyle Championships August 18 - 21
Hobuck Hoedown October 1 - 2

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 forACA 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.

Safety Corner

Steve Exe and Mike Grijalva are the Safety Co-chairs for the WKC. Contact them if you have safety concerns for our rivers. Please read and use the River Hazards Forum on WKC Forums page.

Remembering Wolf Bauer

By Mike Grijalva

The best boating trips I have ever been on, involved a group of experienced people who looked out for each other's safety. Many of the people I would consider in this category I have met thru clubs that promote training and leadership in the sport. The man who started the first boating club in the Seattle area, which is now known as the Washington Kayak Club, was Wolf Bauer. This man who recently passed away, was a leader in many areas of sport, and his life story is inspiring. I think you would like this book.

Recent Trip Reports

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

Outdoor Adventures First Aid/CPR Training for Kayakers

By Tomas Tabisola
If you've never been to Index, a little town on the Skykomish River, you'll have to visit it next time you want or need to take a short road trip, put in for a WW adventure, go fishing for salmon and/or steelhead, spend the night in a haunted hotel, or just have lunch at a rustic cafe on the river run by Bill and Karen Corson.

Team Petty Adventure - Lower Dosewallips

By Kanako Iwata-Eng

On Friday, February 12, 2016, Captain Bill Petty, Pete, Doug, and I headed to the Dosewallips. Our original plan of running the Hamma Hamma was postponed due to the high water combined with our unfamiliarity with the river. Because three of us had just run the Lower Dosewallips on last New Year’s Eve, we thought it wouldn’t be too bad. A Port Angeles boater Colin joined us at the take-out, Dosewallips State Park.

River Helper Training Day

By Shanna Gachen
What a fun day at the pool, followed by a session on the Snoqualmie River Powerhouse section. The goal for the day was to train the helpers who have volunteered to assist with the 2016 WKC Whitewater Kayaking Course. It also gave the instructors the opportunity to refresh our memories and try out new teaching techniques.

Team Petty Adventure - New Year's OP

By Renee Paradis
I had the best time bringing in the New Year in 2016 – I joined Bill Petty, Kanako, and crew for a class II/II+ adventure weekend on the north Olympic Peninsula.A perfect level of difficulty for me, since I haven’t really kayaked in over two years.

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Copyright 2014 Washington Kayak Club

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

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