Paddle For The North

Paddle For The North
Paddle For The North

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

2014 Jackson Kayak Tripper 12

The Tripper 12 is the evolution of our very popular Day Tripper model which was discontinued in the last
couple of years, here is a great video walk-through.

Contact your local Jackson Kayak dealer today.

For more informative videos on Jackson Kayaks please visit the JK You Tube Channel

Here are a few we suggest you watch that are very valuable for those using or selling our fishing kayaks
- Big Rig Walk Through (kayak fishing)
- Kilroy Walk Through (kayak fishing)
- Big Tuna Walk Through (2013) by Len Zilkowsky (kayak fishing)

This one is particular important for those using or selling our whitewater or ocean play kayaks
- Jackson Kayak Uni Shock Bulkhead (whitewater/ocean play) 

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

The Ride of Your Life

Today, we welcome team paddler and Kokatat Regional Team Paddler, Kate Hives with her thoughts on the Santa Cruz Paddlefest - Kayak Surf, Waveski and SUP Competition in beautiful, sunny California.

            It all happened as any good epic does, with venturing into the unknown, saying 'YES' and jumping in with both feet. I have been a kayaker for over 18 years and have most recently found inspiration in surfing ocean waves and rough water paddling in performance sea kayaks, but never did I expect to fall in love with paddling all over again in the form of 'High Performance' surf kayaking. From the moment I took off down a wave and felt my surf kayak begin to plane and carve, gaining energy and momentum from the ocean's force, I knew that my quiver of boats was about to grow.

            Making the transition from sea kayak surfing to surf kayaking has been one of those both-feet-jumping epics. After surfing in Neah Bay, WA at Hobuck Hoedown and loving the festival vibe from years past, I have surfed my home breaks at Jordan River and Tofino, BC, Canada in a Valley Rush+ and have gotten my my fair share of big wave beat downs and cruzee faces alike. When the opportunity arose for the second year in a row, I decided I should repeat the pilgrimage to Steamer Lane and attend the Santa Cruz Paddle Surf Festival in California.

Kate - Steamer Lane 2014 Middle Peak photo: Mark Boyd

After having been in a surf boat only a handful of times, I knew that I had a lot to learn. Having the ability to transfer style and technique from my sea kayak and white water boats is handy , but there is certainly a learning curve to this small, hard railed boat, that begs both aggression and finesse. So I figured that the most efficient way to get into this sport was to watch and paddle with the best. I knew I needed to see bigger waves, so the decision to return to Santa Cruz was easy.

The event draws competitors from around the world to surf at this famous California point break, this year a solid crew came from Basque Country demonstrating big carves and dynamic moves on the waves! During the 3 day festival surf kayaks, SUP's and wave skis take over the lane and competitors have the opportunity to surf the break with only 3 other wave riders, which is remarkable based on how popular Seamer Lane is. This is the perfect recipe for paddlers to demonstrate their skills, share tricks and expand the envelope of what we, as paddlers, think we can achieve.
Kate - watching the break photo: Mark Boyd
            Remembering back to my first trip down to the competition last year, I truly had no idea what to expect. As I drove down the windy coastal roads through Redwood forests and along the Pacific Ocean, I imagined myself riding the face of a beautiful wave, visualizing the ride. I had seen some footage from surf videos and past kayak festival posts, but nothing ever looks the same on camera as it does when you are paddling along side a double overhead cresting face. So when we pulled into Santa Cruz on a warm afternoon and looked out at The Lane, imagine the butterflies in my stomach when I saw the crisp shoulder of perfect waves, against the steep California bluff. The wave peels off the point with stunning consistency cruising to the right with a beautiful steep shoulder and high potential for deliciously long rides. Perfect!

***Kate's PFD of choice is the Kokatat Maximus Prime  (in Navy) which you can not see under her competition bib in the photo above***

You will be hearing and seeing a lot of Kate this season, watch for her upcoming review of her CUSTOM Kokatat Women's Icon Drysuit.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

New SUP and Kayak Fishing Paddles from Werner Paddles

Last week Werner Paddles introduced some new products to their already stellar line-up of hand-crafted, North American-made paddles.

For the every growing kayak fishing market, they have added the very popular, Ultimate Performance, Kalliste & Cyprus to their Hooked paddle series.

Now kayak anglers will be paddling with these exceptionally light, buoyant and quiet paddles.  With this addition, there is a paddle that fits every kayak anglers needs, from performance to budget.

Lengths available: Kalliste - 220cm - 260cm, Cyprus - 220cm - 250cm

Hooked: Kalliste

Hooked: Cyprus

For the Stand Up Paddlers (SUP) we have the new Session.  The Session is the perfect addition to the whitewater line-up which is currently the Stinger.  The Session is our whitewater SUP Play paddle, built "bomber" as all our ww paddles are for strength and reliability.  The progressive rectangular shape is versatile, perfect on or off the river in bright translucent amber.  Available in 1 pce, 2 pce adjustable and 3 pce breakdown.  Adjustable sizes - 70-77.5in, 74-81.5in, 80-87.5in.

SUP: WW Play

The Session is our most versatile whitewater paddle, great for surfing and playing.  The Stinger is our "bomber" downriver paddle perfect for those paddlers who are moving from point A to point B and stopping to play.

All paddles are available to ship NOW so call your local dealer to place your order.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Team Paddler Luke Vollmerhaus and His Mexican Vacation

Okay, so clearly I am doing something wrong when in the last 10 days or so we've had two Nikki Rekman Sales team members reporting from sunny Mexico.

Here's a trip report from Luke Vollmerhaus that will having you yearning for Spring or hoping on the next plane to visit warmer waters!

Hey Paddlers!

I hope everyone’s winter is treating them well and anyone playing in the backcountry of the Rockies has been VERY careful.  We’ve seen some of the most reactive avalanche conditions in years this season.

Anyhow spring is just around the corner (it’s a marvelous +10⁰C here in Calgary) and I managed to make it down to Mexico at the end of February to hit the beach!

We stayed in a town just outside of Puerto Vallarta called Sayulita, less people more waves! We were super fortunate with weather and had blue sky days the whole week we were there. I was lucky enough to have both my family (Andy, Lori and my brother Jakob) and my girlfriend Allison along for the trip.

I could barely wait to taste the salt water so when we arrived my first move was to get a board and hit the ocean. The local surf shop had some great SUP boards. The waves were small the first couple of days but this was an excellent warm up and an easy catch for the SUP board. One comment I have to make at this point regards the ocean floor in this area. The bottom was comprised of oyster beds, for any non-surfers out there this means you’re surfing over a bed of small knives. This is a little hard on the feet and surf-wear, I was incredibly impressed with my Kokatat Surf Trunks which stood up to the beating without issue, no awkward streaking out of the water holding shreds of shorts for me!

During the first days of our trip we took a couple of small SUP tours out of Sayulita’s bay, an incredibly beautiful area, warm water and we even had the privilege to see humpback whales spy hopping!

As the week passed the waves got consistently bigger, nothing impressive but definitely more fun to ride! I got out on a surf board for a couple of days and went back to the SUP later on.  My family had their boogie boards as well as a play boat we dragged along with us, everyone managed a few great rides every day. I even managed to get Allison on a surfboard and after just a couple of short learning sessions she was up and riding like a pro! Her long board practice at home definitely helped.

I must really recommend this area for anyone looking for a sweet cheap vacation, there’s tenting spots right on the beach if you’re worried about accommodation blowing your budget and food is cheap!

I brought my own paddles down for this adventure and got to put Werner Paddles’ Stinger through its rounds in the surf and I must say I was very impressed. The blade surface area provided tons of acceleration when catching the wave and it’s shape made an excellent brace and rudder for cranking the big board through a tight turn.

I’m back in Canada now and eagerly awaiting the spring melt to start our rivers pumping! See you on the water!!



Thursday, March 20, 2014

Board the Fjord 2014 - Save The Date!

It doesn't get more beautiful than Deep Cove, BC for an end of season SUP race.  Spread the word and save the date!

Monday, March 17, 2014

What's new at Jackson Kayak?

There is never a dull moment at Jackson Kayak; our design and production teams have been very busy.

Whether it's whitewater, touring, recreational or fishing - we've got your covered!

Recently we did a blogpost about the Karma RG (Rock Garden) and the Karma Unlimited.  Check out this new walk-through video for the Karma Unlimited.

On the Recreational side, we want to introduce the new Tripper , this boat is based on our very popular sit-in style, Kilroy kayak.  The Kilroy is our sit-in, decked out fishing kayak.  The Tripper has the same stable and fast hull and tons of storage.

On behalf of Jackson Kayak we also welcome regional team paddler, Frank Pryce to the fold for 2014.

Frank is based out of Kamloops, BC with over 30 years of paddling experience, mostly white water in Canada, USA, Ecuador and Nepal.  You can also find Frank doing some flatwater trips and a little fishing along with his wife, who recently discovered Stand Up Paddling (SUP).  Frank's home rivers are the: Clearwater, Thompson and Adams rivers.

Frank is currently busy planning the Clearwater Kayak Festival July 26th & 27th for more details go the festival's Facebook page for more info.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Greetings from the SUP Race Scene in Mexico

Our very own Lina Augaitis has been quite the jet-setter in the first 3+ months of 2014 and here's an update from her recent Stand Up Paddle Race in Sayulita Mexico.

Sayulita is a quaint Mexican town with a perfect mix of touristy and real Mexican flare. Punta Sayulita a great venue for surfing and racing. The beach is perfect for spectators and for training. I am glad I got to experience this wonderful little gem of an event and town. 

Saturday was race day for the elite short course. I was on the SIC X12 PRO using my Werner small Grand Prix paddle. The waves were a good size with some of the sets a little intimidating for the race boards. During warm up I managed to score a cut on my heel and was feeling slightly flustered and intimidated by the waves... I think people could see it on my face (even though I tried to look confident:)) The course was 3 loops with two beach runs. Off the horn a huge set was rolling least we were all in the same boat having to battle the waves:).. I got through most of the set but got caught on the outside wave twice. Its always a little frustrating when you fall and get up just in time to see another wave crashing  right in front of you just big and awkward enough to knock you down again.. This is part of racing and part of the mental challenge to never give up and push through the tough moments.  I think I did better than most though through that first set. I think everyone got caught up in the set except the beast Georges he made it through no problems. Once I got through I started catching some guys on the outside. The first surf into the beach went well. I stayed on my board and caught some guys... I had a clean exit off the board which I was totally stoked about. The next loop I fell on one wave going out... my luck had it that every time I headed out a good size set rolled in:) good practice anyhow. I managed to maintain my position among the men and women throughout the course. I had three clean surf entries onto the beach which I was totally pumped about and is what I am proud of myself for. I may not look elegant surfing in but I did it:) I managed to win the women's and come top ten among the men. 

The following day was the distance event. We had a beach start and finish with three loops of spectator friendly course. On this day I chose to try out my new SIC X12 PRO LITE board. It is 24" wide so less stable but faster than the PRO. We started in a slightly more sheltered part of the bay so the waves were slightly smaller but still big enough to cause some excitement. This time around though the horn went after the large set:) To the second buoy I was with a bunch of the SIC crew but during the first long section I managed to pull away from a bunch of guys and then was alone for the rest of the race standing in 6th place. By the third loop the conditions were not in our favor with tough wind and water conditions. I managed to stay upright through the sections but it was hard work mentally and physically. The loop went something like this (headwind, side chop plus weird conditions, side chop on the other side, head wind.... x3). It was big mental push to make it around the course and good practice for the balance skills. My legs were definitely feeling it. It was grand to paddle into the finish and be done:) I managed to win first female and 6th overall on this day. 

The event does a good job in bringing people together with a huge concert on Saturday night (G love and the special sauce taking stage right there on the beach)... so cool. I love beach towns. Sunday night awards was  up on the cliff looking over the water... what a gorgeous venue.

live, love, laugh,..DREAM!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Henry Brothers Expedition Presentation Wednesday March 26th

Wednesday March 26th 7PM at the University of the Fraser Valley, Theatre Room B101
33844 King Rd, Abbotsford, BC V2S 7M7

Join us and our friends, the Henry Brothers for a special presentation about their epic kayak journey from the mouth of the Amazon River to Juno Beach, Florida.

This evening is sponsored by: Kokatat Watersports Wear, WernerPaddles, Nikki Rekman Sales and  Western Canoeing & Kayaking



Green River, UT

Green River, UT
Photo: Shawna Franklin