Aug 21 | Kayaking the North Pacific | Part II

by Rob Lyon

Rob-Lyon-100x100The wild northwest coast of Vancouver Island still feeds Rob Lyon’s soul as he finishes his journey. Eddied out on Bone Game Island, where Part I meets Part II, he and Colin wave goodbye to friends and decide whether to wait out the storm or head home early.

It rained so hard in the middle of the night that the bedrock stream issuing from the base of a waterfall not far inland rose to heinous proportions. I got up to pee at one point and found the creek nearly lapping at my tent, forcing a quick and dirty relocation to drier ground. I awoke to settling conditions, still wild and wooly but the rain had left off. The sky was blue between scudding clouds. But the seas humping past just off the mouth of our little cove looked like herd after herd of white-tusked elephants on stampede. We weren’t going anywhere this day.

The next day, the elephants were still parading past but they were small and lacking tusks. We bathed in the icy waterfall behind camp, packed up and rounded the northern tip of the Cape of Storms in glassy seas, accompanied by a pair of Orcas feeding near Solander Island.

Solander_web Continue reading

Aug 17 | What Is Your Important Place?

by NRS Staff

What is your important place? What river means the most to you?

benherndon_42844781-001

That’s the question we asked attendees at the Outdoor Retailer tradeshow earlier this month when celebrating our partnership with American Rivers, but the answers we received weren’t what we expected. Sure, we expected to hear “Grand Canyon” and “Middle Fork Salmon” and “Nantahala” and “Upper Cherry,” but we never predicted what came next — the stories. Continue reading

Aug 7 | SUP Qatar: A New Perspective from the Arabian Peninsula

by Sophia Theodossiou

Sophia_headshot 4As NRS International Customer Service rep, Sophia Theodossiou, paddled along Qatar’s coastline, she found her NRS SUP was not only an excellent exploration vehicle and a great cultural ice breaker but, also, a ticket into overbooked paddling tours.

“You are going swimming? In the winter? You will freeze!”

The woman’s black abaya and the hijab covering her hair made sweat bead at my brow. I glanced over at my dad, who shrugged and reassured her that we were accustomed to much colder climates. She hurried off, muttering in Arabic. We began inflating the boards. Ten minutes later, I was drenched in sweat and already feeling sunburned. In Qatar, the typical winter forecast is 85 and sunny, and today was no exception. The woman’s genuine concern for our warmth and safety made me chuckle.

IMG_3254_web

Continue reading

Aug 6 | The Best of #Guidevibes | July Edition

by NRS Staff

Sixty days down and over two-thousand posts later, we’ve concluded our second month of the NRS #Guidevibes campaign. Not that we expected the stoke to slow, but we’ve been pleasantly surprised to see the love and vibes grow stronger each day. You guys have yet to cease inspiring and awing us with your entries and some of you have even brought tears to our eyes (both of hysterics and sadness).

We’ve entered the last month of the contest. In other words we have only four more $100 NRS gift cards and four more $110 Chaco gift cards to give away until the announcement of the Grand Prize winner. So kick your feet up and peruse what the Best of July entrants had to offer.

Continue reading

Aug 3 | Standing Up for the Important Places

by NRS Staff

Earlier this year, NRS teamed up with American Rivers and Chaco to support the film, The Important Places, by Forest Woodward and Gnarly Bay Productions. This beautiful story of a father and son rediscovering the important places together captured nationwide audiences at film festivals and online, winning the Most Inspiring Award at 5Point Film Festival and earning a Vimeo Staff Pick.

Continue reading

Jul 31 | Kayaking the North Pacific

by Rob Lyon

Rob-Lyon-100x100

Rob Lyon is never happier than when there’s open ocean to paddle, salt air to breathe, a fine island to wait out the storm and plenty of fish to eat. The wild northwest coast of Vancouver Island has it all, and then some.

Last to bed, I closed up the kitchen and kicked sand on the remaining embers of the fire. I left my radio on to catch the ten o’clock weather update from Environment Canada. They were calling for Storm Force winds by early afternoon.

Under scudding clouds and flat ivory moonlight I climbed the sand berm to the grassy ridgeline of the island where my tent was pitched. I meditated with my hoody pulled up against a brisk sou’east wind, then ducked inside and fell asleep.

00530035_web Continue reading

Jul 17 | The Art of Reading Water

by Andy Hinton

Andy Headshot 1“Running whitewater is not a battle but a dance.” Duct Tape Diaries’s newest contributor, Andy Hinton, poetically delves into the beauty and finesse of running the perfect line, and the time and practice it takes to master the art.

Scouting is not just about figuring out where to go, but also how to get there.

The river is cold and clear, radiating with hues of emerald green. As it cascades over small drops, ribbons of white bubbles rise from the depths, crashing, colliding, rolling, and toiling about each other before falling off a five-foot ledge into a narrow chute. The resulting froth surges and recedes with no semblance of order or sanity. Then it converges between two boulders and dissipates into a large pool.

IMG_2812_web

Continue reading