Eskimo Excercise

Paddling Delaware and the eastern shore of Maryland and Virginia

 

 

 

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 Sam (?)
We sit and wait, Our new friends
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.   cjB@comcast.net

 

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 delmarvakayak@comcast.net  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.

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