The organizers, actually Leo, of the
"Annual Leo Brady Exercise
like the Eskimos" after seeing the Delmarva Paddlers Retreat
article in the October 2004 issue of
Delaware Beach Life
asked if we could bring some traditional kayaks to the New Year's day plunge.
So with boats off Robin, Dubside, Phil, and Chris went.
|Bud Taylor (if I
remembered his name correctly)
||Phil and Dubside
|We sit and wait,
|Bud brought out
the starting signs and Dubside gave them the OG (go) signal.
||In they went
||and out they came.
|Water temps in the low 40's and the air in the upper 60's, with plenty of
sun. We had to "seal launch" so to speak into the surf, the tide was high and
the 2-3' waves were breaking on the beach. Dubside was scurrying to put his
Tuliq around the coaming when a wave came in and distracted Robin and she turned
around to catch her shoes that were floating away. In doing so she let go of
Dubside, who was then flushed into the surf and where he found himself face to
face with the next wave. The Greenland Champion that Dubside, is he made it out
fine. Robin turned around and asked my why Dubside launched. Phil informed me
that he had never launched into the surf before. So we sent him off with better
results. Then I launched with Robins help. All went fine. When I got out
there Dubside was bailing out his kayak, and wanted to know why Robin had pushed
him out before he was ready. I explained. Dubside and Phil entertained the
crowds for about an hour practicing rolls in the ocean. Phil informed me that
it was his first time in the ocean. Mind you the local weekly, Coastal Point,
had just interviewed me and run a 2 page article primarily about kayaks and cold
water safety. If they only knew. About a half an hour before the start about
7 or 8 sit on tops joined us off the beach. They had full wet suits on, and
were regulars in the Bethany Beach surf. One of them, Bud I believe his
name was, brought out the starting signs, but insisted on giving Dubside the
honor of "Starter". We all had a great time watching the swimmers dive in and
shriek with delighted terror at the water temperature. We landed with the help
of our new friends. Beach landing a seakayak is rarely graceful, and can
be a real challenge at high tide with the surf breaking on the steep beach.
But by far the best line of the day; a rather upper crust women walk passed us
on the beach, looked us over once or twice and after carefully observing Dubside
loudly announced to all "Oh how 11th century", and then walked away. We were
speechless, mainly because we were all chuckling so hard at the comment.
Dubside's already planning on how to do it better next year. I'll be there
with a better plan for taking photos.
Dubside it should be noted participated in the 2004
Greenland Kayak Championships and came back with the Gold. Not to shabby
for a home grown boy. See Qajaq USA
for more details.
I'm hoping the folks we met on the Sit On Tops take the time to drop and
line. They certainly know how to ring in the new year.
Jan 1, 2005 Let's get started at the
"Annual Leo Brady Exercise
like the Eskimos"
The Bethany-Fenwick area Chamber of Commerce in keeping with the theme of their
annual New Year's Day swim have asked if some traditional paddlers can bring
their boats for "show and tell". We have also been given the privilege of
starting the event if we launch that day, weather permitting. Kayakers
need to be dressed appropriately. If you leave your boat on the beach and
go for a swim, you're on your own. contact firstname.lastname@example.org
for additional details and logistics.
Leo Brady, and I'm sure I'm going to get the particulars
wrong, served in WW II in the ski division. They trained in artic survival with
the Eskimos. He feels he owes his life to their training and when they began
the event 9 years ago he suggested the name in honor of them. A couple of years
ago the event name was slightly changed to honor him too. Anyway after reading
the article in Beach Life he called me to see if he could get some of the
kayakers to join in the New Year's day fun. The upshot is they would like to
make a spot for us to show off our boats. Especially SOFs and home built wooden
ones. I thought it might be a good time to promote Qajaq USA and safe winter
boating practices. We could set up a table with brochures on it, especially
Chuck's brochure on hypothermia. Anybody else we should contact? If we launch
they would like us to start the event too.
My apologies for the pictures, I just didn't get in close enough to the swim,
got none of Dubside and Phil rolling, not a single shot of the boats on display
especially Phil's Baidarka, trusted my equipment to much, and concentrated too
much on a planned shot. Wait till next year. We'll practice at
the February Polar Bear Swim in Rehoboth when Sweet Pea takes the plunge that day.