<![CDATA[Skunk River Paddlers - Blog]]>Sat, 30 Dec 2017 10:01:33 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[IRR Master River Stewards Program comes to the Skunk!]]>Fri, 10 Mar 2017 17:29:06 GMThttp://skunkriverpaddlers.org/blog/irr-master-river-stewards-program-come-to-the-skunkPicture

Spread the word!  This is just one of six MRSPs scheduled for 2017!

Iowa Rivers Revival's Master River Stewards Program is an adult-education program that teaches watershed awareness, paddling and navigating skills, river and stream dynamics, aquatic habitat, water quality and water monitoring, and policies related to floodplains, river protection and restoration.

Register online by April 23rd and find more details at: www.storycountyconservation.org
Or contact Annie Fangman at Prairie Rivers of Iowa
<![CDATA[A Fallen Friend]]>Mon, 30 Jan 2017 00:35:58 GMThttp://skunkriverpaddlers.org/blog/a-fallen-friendPicture
We've lost a great friend.  Gary Kingham died Sunday, January 22nd after his kayak capsized near the Sycamore Access on the Des Moines River. 

The news of Gary's death came as a shock to everyone in the paddling community.  Gary was known and respected by many.  He'll be greatly missed and
fondly remembered.

Kingham enjoys scenery along the way to a win

Ogden Reporter (www.ogdenreporter.com)

Kayaker Gary Kingham paddles his way to another win.
Photo by Robert Hirschfield

May 16, 2015 marked the 58th running of the Des Plaines River Canoe and Kayak Marathon in Illinois. Historically, this part of Chicagoland was woods and open space. Back then the race had a “Northwoods” feel that attracted over 1,000 canoes. This year’s attendance was over 400 canoes and kayaks.

One of those competing was Ogden’s Gary Kingham. Racing in the under 18’ sea kayak class, Kingham dominated the field, placing first, 15 minutes ahead of the next competitor.

“The most amazing thing over this 18.5 mile run was the scenery, being half the width of the Des Moines River with very low banks, good parts of it dark and treecovered,” noted Kingham. “I expected to see “Yoda” watching me go by! My secret to success on this course is reading and riding the current. When you can do that, you’ll fly along at seven to eight miles per hour!”

Kingham’s prior race this year was March 22 on Perche Creek in Columbia, MO where he took a silver medal over the ninemile course.

Gary Kingham competes at the World Championship

Ogden Reporter

Gary Kingham finishes in the top 10.
Photo provided

On Sept. 24, athletes from around the world met at the Olympic Training Center and Race Course for the 2014 Kayak World Championship. The event took place at the ultra modern world class U.S. Kayak & Canoe Olympic training site on the Oklahoma River
at Oklahoma City.

Men and women athletes from across the U.S. train and even live there year round perfecting their sport in kayaks, racing canoes and
rowing shells.

“It’s all quite a spectacle to behold,” says kayak competitor Gary Kingham of Ogden.

Kingham was offered the opportunity to compete for the U.S. in August after a successful season of four out of five victories, including setting the course record in a tandem kayak at the 72 mile South Dakota Kayak Challenge and once again a gold medal at the Iowa

Gary Kingham is silver medalist at nat’l. championship

Ogden Reporter

Kingham’s new ocean racing Surfski kayak was developed in Australia as a lifesaving vessel, then later modified for racing. The 18’ long 21” wide carbon/kevlar/fiberglass body is designed to cut through the ocean waves.

Photo provided

By Kathy Pierce

Newago, MI hosted the USCA National Canoe & Kayak Championships on the Muskegon River Thursday through Sunday, Aug. 8-11.  Competitors were from 16 foreign countries and 38 states. The course included four miles on Croton Lake a portage over a dam and re-entering Muskegon River for eight winding miles of downriver rocks and rapids.

Kingham led his Sea Kayak division from the start until the last half mile when a rock damaged his rudder, slowing progress just enough to be overtaken at the finish by 12 seconds.

“I saw this guy coming up on me and we raced ‘boat-to-boat’,” related Kingham. “I tried to sprint to the finish but just couldn’t get any more speed out of the boat. My GPS was reading seven to eight miles per hours. I thought maybe I was tapped out. After we finished and lifted the boat out I saw the bent rudder and thought ‘oh boy.’ Well there is always next year.”

The following weekend at the nine-mile Great Iowa River Race in Iowa City, Kingham won gold in the Sea Kayak division.

<![CDATA[Thoreau Redux]]>Sat, 30 Jul 2016 18:19:03 GMThttp://skunkriverpaddlers.org/blog/thoreau-reduxThoreau Redux
Copyright, such as it may be, by Ronald Gardner
July 30, 2016
(Estimated reading time: about 2 minutes)
(Estimated composing time: perhaps 15 minutes, including editing)

Imagine yourself, paddling your kayak, or your canoe, upon the lake, Ada Hayden Lake perhaps, gliding along slowly near the shoreline. A wonderful day, the bright sun shaded by a few welcome clouds, winds calm, water smooth, birds in their flight, fish jumping as they feed; a perfectly balmy, quiet moment for your thoughtful repose. All is right. Along the higher walking-path surrounding the Lake, one hears only a not so distant voice of an unseen person, asking, almost as if in some incredulous comprehension:

“What are you doing down there?”

And a good question, yet how does one reply, when it and its answer easily relate as much to the joys of paddling as it would be rather innocently founded upon one of the most unknown Questions and best replying Answers of early American literature, that of the stalwart Henry David Thoreau to the astonished inquiry of Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Thoreau, as many know, was protesting some form of tax which he refused to pay, and for that he was placed into a small locked shack, which among honest people of the time represented the semblance of a jail house. Rarely is it known that upon hearing of his friend Thoreau forced into such a circumstance, Emerson arrived to visit. Standing outside the makeshift jail, near the small window and seeing Thoreau inside, Emerson asked: “Henry, what are you doing in there?” To which Thoreau replied: “Waldo, what are you doing, out there?” The implication being, Why are you not protesting also. Again, a good question.

And there you are, still on the Lake in your favorite boat, floating about with the gentle waves and whisping winds, hearing from that nearby voice with the same inquiry, of:

“What are you doing down there?”

To which you reply, in a modest suggestion of invitation:

“What are you doing, up there?!”]]>
<![CDATA[SRP on CIP]]>Thu, 28 Jul 2016 21:04:10 GMThttp://skunkriverpaddlers.org/blog/srp-on-cip Several SRP excursions have been published on the Central Iowa Paddlers (CIP) website at http://centraliowapaddlers.org/category/skunk-river-paddlers/

<![CDATA[Welcome to SRP]]>Thu, 28 Jul 2016 19:40:00 GMThttp://skunkriverpaddlers.org/blog/welcome-to-srpWELCOME!
A new "entrance" to the very outdated SRP site was created weeks ago.  Some have found and used the new (and mobile-friendly) Water Trail and Gauge pages, but the new blog has just been bobbing along, waiting for an introduction. 

So watch here for posts from a variety of SRP members, and if you haven't already, please join us on the water (and in the parking lot) Wednesday evenings at Ada Hayden Lake.