Adventures in surf kayaking

Everything I ever needed to know about life I learned while surfing.  I learned that no one approach will work every day.  I learned that some days are going to be better than others, but even in the worst of days there is an optimal flow.   Harmonizing with this flow may mean being aggressive or yielding, bold or cautious.  It may require a physical approach or a cerebral one, and it may even mean not going surfing at all.   I've learned that when I fight the flow I get punished.  Most of all I've learned that when I lead from my soul I generate opportunities for myself, as though there is a broader knowing inside me, something beyond cognition.

Similarly kayaking is also a microcosm of life.  One can choose to specialize and master a certain type of boat to it's full expression, but to grow in breadth as well as depth we must expand beyond the boundaries of the familiar.   Every day I challenge myself with the idea, "Maybe I'm doing things wrong?"  By becoming comfortable with this notion, I minimize the cognitive dissonance between my preconcieved notions and the new ideas that present themselves.  By exploring the unusual, new life is breathed into the creative process.  That, and it's just a lot of fun.

This is called a Vulcan,  it's an extinct squirt boat once made by New Wave.  It's original mission was to provide a more bouyant cruising kayak for the squirt boat afficionado.  It is 11'6" long,  24" wide,  and shallower than the lowest volume greenland boat.  I bought it sight unseen from a guy on the east coast for $650 and when it showed up in the mail it was full of ants and spiders, this thing was old and raggedy!   After some initial misgivings I gave it a good wash and discovered  a very good kevlar lay-up beneath the grime.   I then drank a HUGE MARGARITA, and with no idea what I was doing I cut the bow and stern off with a jig saw.
 Committed, I then set about glassing in a new bow and stern and adding fin boxes under the seat.  I'm not really a fiberglass guy but I think I did a good job.  Finally I spray painted the whole thing flat black for a very batman sort of aesthetic, and it was time to go surfing.

Like everytime I ever bring a camera to the beach, the surf sucked.

But even in this small mushy blown out surf the Vulcan ripped, slicing effortlessly and completely in control.  When it got up the speed the water blasted off the rails with a very satifying hiss to let me know I was really smoking.

The landings and closeouts were very soft.  The kayak just knifed under and the wave passed by.

This is a very fun little boat and I can't to get it out in bigger conditions.  It has the kind of control I need for those must make drops and is slippery enough to cut under the evil shorebreak.  Of course when I do get out there I probably won't have a camera ready but that is certainly better than the opposite, having a camera, but no kayak.

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