Sea Kayak Clinic
October 14-15, 2000

I was joined by a group of enthusiastic paddlers: Jean Wedthoff, her son Francis Wedthoff , Jamie Ingram, and Jason Ramsey. Meg came along also, to help, but also for the chance to paddle in Charleston, one of our favorite places.

We started out at Coastal Expeditions to pick up rental boats (many thanks to Anne and her staff for their support), then paddled out Shem Creek into Charleston Harbor. On the left, Jamie is getting into a kayak for the first time. Note the use of the paddle as a support.

Once out in the Harbor, we practiced strokes and maneuvers until Francis, working hard to find out how far he could put his boat on edge, went a little too far. In this picture, Steve is performing a T-rescue, dumping the water out of the capsized kayak. Note how Francis (left) is helping by pushing down the stern, while Jean watches from the right.
Once the boat was empty, Steve stabilized it so that Francis could climb back in. Actually, you sort of swim in rather than climb.
Everybody got an opportunity to practice rescues. Below, Jamie is stabilizing Jason's boat as he re-enters. On the right, some people say that you can't teach beginners the paddlefloat re-enter and roll. Try telling this bunch that.

We decided to take a short tour and paddled over to Patriot's Point. As you can see, some people like big boats and some like little boats. It was fun watching the Cub Scouts who had come to visit the fighting ships get excited over seeing a group of kayaks.

Shem Creek is home to the Mt Pleasant shrimping fleet, seen here behind our boats.

The next day, it was off to the beach for some surf training. Here's Jamie practicing taking beam seas. The backlighting is dramatic, but the details get lost. Sorry.

This shot of Jason is a little better. Actually, the shots below that Jamie took from out in the water are much better. In the one on the left, Jason is just starting what looks like a great ride. On the right, he's fully broached, edging into the wave and bracing as he rides in towards the beach. Believe it or not, he's in a very stable position.
Finally, here's a shot I grabbed of Francis as he was getting a good ride in to the beach.

We spent a little time out beyond the surf line doing more practice rescues, then came in as a group through the surf. Unfortunately, no one was on the beach to take pictures of that. Also unfortunately, Jean missed her timing a little and got surfed by an incoming wave. Her bow pearled, she did a quick endo and then had to bail. After an epic swim into the beach she was a little breathless, but perked up quickly. Jason did admirably collecting her boat and making sure it was heading in through the waves.

As usual, it was a full, fun weekend. We'll do another one in the spring, around mid-May.