New Lumpy Paddle

I had a chance to try my new Lumpy Paddles greeland stick yesterday for the first time. It’s a shouldered-stick, 86″ long with a 20 ½” inch loom and 3 ¼” blade made from Western Red Cedar. After many conversations with Bill Bremer, the specifications for this paddle were finalized. Bill’s suggestions and guidance during the design and throughout were spot on.

It only took a few minutes to get the feel for this stick. After finding the correct canted angle, the blade buried easily and provided a nice even bite throughout the stroke. When using the canted forward stroke with my other sticks, I would occasionally bury the blade too quickly and felt like I was going to pull myself into a capsize. I didn’t get this feeling with the Lumpy Stick. This could be because the blade was a little narrower (3 ¼” versus 3 ½”) than my other sticks, but allowed me about the same amount of purchase because of its shouldered-design, where my other sticks are non-shouldered. Another change from my other sticks was the length (86″ versus 88″) and the loom (grip) diameter reduced to 1.1875″.

When using the stick in an extended manner, I did have to adjust my hand-slide a little because of its shoulder, but it was not a major hinderance. Returning to the normal forward-stroke grip position was easier because of the shoulder and its feeling in my palm and outer fingers.

This is a beautiful-looking stick that I will enjoy exploring its possibilities in the future.

Canoe and Kayak Classes

Winter Canoe and Kayak classes

School District 128 Community Education: these classes are taught in the Vernon Hills High School (VHHS) pool. View course information and signup online at:
http://comed128.org

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Select current classes, Health and Fitness.

Classes

Water Sports – Canoeing – Introduction 600089 Class ID: 4424
Schedule : Weekly – Sun 4:15 PM – 5:45 PM; 4 sessions; starting 2/8/2015, ending 3/1/2015 Location : VHHS Location : VHHS.
Instructor : A. Cocallas Materials Fee: $0.00 Tuition: $89.00

Water Sports – Kayaking – Introduction 600085 Class ID: 4570
Schedule : Weekly -Sun 4:15 PM – 5:45 PM; 3 sessions; starting 3/8/2015, ending 3/22/2015 Location : VHHS Location : VHHS.
Instructor : J. Gabris Materials Fee: $0.00 Tuition: $89.00

Water Sports – Kayaking – Introduction 600085 Class ID: 4571.
Schedule : Weekly -Sun 5:45 PM – 7:15 PM; 3 sessions; starting 3/8/2015, ending 3/22/2015 Location : VHHS Location : VHHS.
Instructor : J. Gabris Materials Fee: $0.00 Tuition: $89.00

Water Sports – Kayaking – Rolling Class 600075 Class ID: 4566.
Schedule : Weekly -Sun 4:15 PM – 5:45 PM; 4 sessions; starting 2/8/2015, ending 3/1/2015 Location : VHHS Location : VHHS.
Instructor : John Gabris Materials Fee: $0.00 Tuition: $105.00

Water Sports – Kayaking – Rolling Class 600075 Class ID: 4592.
Schedule : Weekly -Sun 5:45 PM – 7:15 PM; 4 sessions; starting 2/8/2015, ending 3/1/2015 Location : VHHS Location : VHHS.
Instructor : J. Gabris Materials Fee: $0.00 Tuition: $105.00

Water Sports – Kayaking – Rolling Class 600075 Class ID: 4568.
Schedule : Weekly -Sun 4:15 PM – 5:45 PM; 4 sessions; starting 4/12/2015, ending 5/3/2015 Location : VHHS Location : VHHS.
Instructor : John Gabris Materials Fee: $0.00 Tuition: $105.00

Water Sports – Kayaking – Rolling Class 600075 Class ID: 4569.
Schedule : Weekly -Sun 5:45 PM – 7:15 PM; 4 sessions; starting 4/12/2015, ending 5/3/2015 Location : VHHS.
Instructor : John Gabris Materials Fee: $0.00 Tuition: $105.00

Is Twitter a viable option

Paddle notifications

For those impromptu paddles, I wonder if Twitter would work as my notification system? In my area there are many ways someone can notify others of upcoming paddles. This includes Facebook, Yahoo! groups, Google calendars, and messaging. I don’t know of anyone using Twitter.

All the Facebook and Yahoo! groups are administered sites and require admin approval to join. They also seem to encourage comments creating a on-going dialog. This is fine for planned events, sharing events, and picture posting. I do check them every now and then, but don’t want to get immediate notification when someone posts a picture or shares a link. My Yahoo! groups are set up for a weekly digest.

I’m retired and have the luxury of hitting the lakes anytime the whim hits me and the weather cooperates. A few of my friends are in the same situation, and others have flexible at-home work hours that allow them to slip away for a few hours. My problem is communication. Either they are not on Facebook, belong to a Yahoo! group, or have a smartphone for messaging. It becomes a little frustrating, to the extent that sometimes I forego the notification altogether.

One thing that worked well this year was a Wednesday paddle. Around 10 AM (flexible) a few of us would get together at one of the SE Wisconsin[1]

lakes. The time and location for the next paddle is determined at the end of the current outing. Knowing that these paddles happens fairly regularly, some friends contact me for the details if they are interested.

This year I’m looking to simplify. I have already incorporated technology to automate my float plans using Drafts, Text Expander, and messaging. This year I think I will try adding Twitter. I have 2 accounts @a_gould and @2_kayak. I will use the @2_kayak to post my impromptu paddles since it works nicely with my workflow. I hope it works.

See you on the water in 2015.

—AG


  1. Illinois has taken away my joy of paddling there. The required water usage stickers for each boat (I have 6) and the additional Fox Waterway Agency fees (each boat) for the Chain of Lakes has reduced the number of my fellow paddles from joining me on the these waters. I just love spending time working with inept clerks at my local retailer to get them and how well these stickers adhere to my boat only to fade away into nothingness after a few paddles. We are so close to the Wisconsin border that it becomes a no-brainer of where to paddle with a group… And guess which State gets our lunch and beer money… And guess which State has the better launch sites for non-motorized boats? Makes you wonder what all those fees go for. Yes, I am an ex-cheesehead.  ↩

Amazon S3 Updates

Saying Goodbye to Some Sysmex Files

Back in my working days, I used Amazon S3 to host some of my media files used in training at Sysmex. So, why after 5 years do I still host these for them to use “free of charge”?

Well, no more. Gone are all the Sysmex media that I created. I did give them the source files when I left, but I doubt they knew what to do with them.

—AJG