Wednesday, October 31, 2007


Here is a nice shot looking south at the take-out at Mesick, on the Manistee River. Not that any of the challengers would see it, as everyone was in after dark.

Marissa and I took a cruise up river and enjoyed the late afternoon sun. The Manistee is a wonderful river. I would say we were a week or two late for peak color season, but we were still able to catch colors like this.

We came upon this old train bridge. What is it about bridges and water? Why do they hold so much fascination? We'll keep paddling till we figure it out.

We worked our way back home to Wisconsin in the pre-dawn light. Had this photo opportunity at a rest stop. You get a neat perspective if you rotate this photo 180 degrees.

Tuesday showed promise. Sunny and warm. Temps were in the 60's. Quick call to Mark from Kruger and off to the put-in on Rock Lake.

Water temperature has drop dramatically. I would say in the high 40's. Time to break out the paddling booties and cold water gear. I hugged the shoreline to play it safe today as I was in shorts and a tee-shirt. Not prepared for the 40 degree water. When I say hugging the shore, I mean hugging the shore within 10 feet, waist deep water. Am I going to tip, doubtful, but why take a chance especially when you are paddling alone.

I haven't heard much more on the news, but they did find a floating kayak and life jacket about 900 yards off shore on Lake Michigan a few days back. No paddler to be found. Maybe this has a better ending, just haven't heard.

You have to know your limitations... manage the risks. Always lean on the side of caution. There is a great group of cold water paddlers out of the Milwaukee Sea-kayakers group. Shari from the group at Laacke and Joys is putting on a cold water paddling course. If you are interested in paddling around in the late fall and early winter months. I would suggest a course like this to get your paddle wet.

Paddle safe, paddle prepared - The Capt'n

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Kruger Challenge Pics

The portage - just the beginning!

Jack - Mark - Craig(?)



Bob and Janet


In a veil of darkness and dropping temperatures. Paddlers prepare for the Kruger Challenge 100 on the Manistee River, Northern Michigan. A 24 hour race with an expedition feel.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Status Report

It has been a while since I did a status report. So here goes. September showed promise, October was dismal, November is the time to dial it in.

More of the Kruger Challenge 100

Hanging with Boo was such fun! Kids can find the magic in almost anything! Kruger Challenge 100 turned road trip... great time. I'll post pictures and video's through out the up-coming week.

Fun Stuff
Laura got into the Ironman Louisville - so Dawn aka SandyBottom will have an online training partner. They are already sharing training plans through Tribabes, a women's wellness / fitness group Laura started a few years ago. Alan aka SOS is signed up too... so it is going to be a hoot heading to Kentucky this coming August. Can we squeeze in anymore fun this summer? Lets hope so!!

Boo's on a mission UM /EC in March... while I am guilty of fabric abuse as I try to fit into some dress slacks for work. I got to get back at it... so

We are moving furniture out of the living room, getting bike trainers and workout equipment out of the basement. Fall is upon us and we have a full season of winter indoor training plans to go through. Time to get moving (again) .

Knees and back feel good - back away from the pie!! - The Capt'n

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Kruger Challenge 100

What a great time we had over in Michigan. It was really good to see the WaterTribe so well represented. It was really nice that the word was out that "Boo" was coming. Everyone came over and introduced themselves the night we arrived... Very cool.

Great Fun!

Boo tells a good story on her blog The Adventures of Super Boo , so I will direct you over there for her insights. I especially like the part where Boo says that Mark and Jack finished the 100 miler and that it is awesome they came back alive!!

What one hears over coffee in the Burger Breakfast Express - Best coffee in town.

Through the eyes of an eleven year old, out of the mouths of babes... - The Capt'n

Friday, October 26, 2007

Little Miss Sunshine

Sorting photos from my old desktop.

One of my Favorite pictures of Super Boo. We bushwacked to get to this location for the Mid-America Xtreme Adventure Race a few years back. Just had to share it.

We are some what packed for the Kruger Challenge - but I have about three hours of work in the office I need to complete before we leave. It puts our ETA in the Northwoods of Michigan - Big Manistee River at about 8:00pm. I was hoping to be on the road by now. Getting there is 1/2 the battle...

See you on the other side of the weekend....- Adventure on! -The Capt'n

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Right of Passage

Chief gives us the nod!! Marissa joins the WaterTribe. A right of passage for an 11 year old who loves to paddle/sail and adventure. Her tribal name is official "Boo".
We're torn on which event to do, but the action starts March 1, 2008. We'll be meeting up with a lot of WaterTribers' this weekend during the Kruger Challenge. We'll seek out their advice.
"Boo" has started her own blog; The Adventures of Super Boo and as a Dad, I couldn't be more proud. She is taking a lot on...
I'll let Boo tell the story. I encourage you all to bookmark her blog in your favorites.
It's gonna be an adventure of a life time! - The Capt'n

Sunday, October 21, 2007

October Paddling Bliss

Beautiful morning out on the pond. Put in on the windward shore up by Sandy's Beach.

I opted for the Azul, as I could skirt up and be all toasty. I tossed the single blade keeping my hands dry and spray down to a minimum... It was 40 something outside...I was golden.

Paddling the reed grass on the western shore. Lots of ducks and geese tucked in out of the wind.


The morning light offered up brilliant fall colors as I made my way around the lake...

There is magic on the water - The Capt'n

Friday, October 19, 2007

Kruger Challenge 100 miles

The Kruger Challenge 2007 is scheduled for Saturday, October 27. The challenge is to complete 100 miles on the Big Manistee River within 24 hours.
The logistics of getting over there is just as tough as the challenge itself. A teens social calendar... tough to over come. :-/
Boo doesn't know it yet... but she is my tandem partner for the challenge. I wonder if she is willing to miss a 1/2 of day school to head to Michigan for a little paddling? While her sister sits through a full day of classes!! :- O
It will be Boo's longest challenge yet. Hopefully the weather Gods will be with us. The Big Manistee looks pretty challenging as it snakes it's way southwest.
Big Smile--- I see some paddling with my daughter in the near future!! - The Capt'n

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Another Great Adventure

Voyageurs National Park Trip, Fall 2007

John Haugen-Wente owns The Paddlin’ Shop in Madison, WI. and is the co- founder of the paddle sail rendezvous in Madison Wisconsin. Visit the website often for updates!!

He tells a great story of his trip this past fall up to Voyageurs National Park - click here to experience it.

Now if i can only get him to write about his adventures in his Klepper under sail, he'd be golden! - The Capt'n

Ah The Weather Gods

We are in a stretch of un-believable weather. It is 63 degrees and I'm lov'n it! Great morning out on the water. Rain is coming, but no matter, for now paddling bliss.

Boo has been paddling the Azul all summer. Had to get back in it myself to see why I can't wipe the smile off of her face. This Greenland style boat is a blast to paddle. I still go single blade with a "switch" on a 10 count. The small skeg (retractable) helps keeping it straight and on course.

More MR340 fun

Everyone got lots of mileage out of our bucket portable toilet and lots of laughs. Here is a short clip of our pre-MR340 antics in the parking garage.

Smile, it's all good - The Capt'n

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Gazetteer not required

Funny how after reading of adventure on the web, I had to get out and paddle. Woke up "O" Dark 30, a balmy 58 degrees, wind calm and not a ripple on the pond.

Yep that is blue water and green grass. Not the expectant brown dried out dead stuff you get from a blazing hot summer. I suspect we had the fall turn over on the lake. The lake went crystal clear.

Mystery of Rock Lake

Rock Lake is in south central Wisconsin, at Lake Mills, in Jefferson County approximately 20 miles east of Madison. It is 87 feet at its deepest point.

There is much controversy regarding its underwater pyramids and research is ongoing to discover the significance of what appear to be man made structures.

The largest pyramid known as the Limnatis Pyramid is 18 feet tall and has a base width of 60 feet. The pyramids are built of rock and black Stone. There appears to be a plaster covering. Very little has emerged from the depths of the lake to provide any real insight into the mystery, but it deserves exploration.

A great paddle. Nobody on the water. Lots of gulls, geese ducks and the mysteries of Rock Lake to keep me company.

It gets a little freaky when you paddle over the headless horseman pyramid, in the dark, without your blanky. - The Capt'n

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Outrigger Adventure

les fous
Uploaded by ras-did

Random thoughts

I long for the lazy warm days of summer.

The boats are still on the car from the weekend. I'm thinking road trip, break out the Gazetteer!

M340 adventure - keep it moving

Hand me a paddle - The Capt'n

Monday, October 15, 2007

Looking back - cause forward is scary!

Mark from Kruger Canoes was rummaging through his dry bag and came up with some video that we shot during the MR340.

When we first arrived in Kansas City, Kansas. We met up with a fellow that was interested in selling a CVC disposable video camera. Mark jumped at the chance to pick up this fine piece of equipment. Not like there wasn't enough crap all ready going into the boat.

We new the guy was down on his luck, the purchase suspect.and that capturing our adventure on video may be used against us in a court of law. But we threw caution to the wind.... Over the next couple of posts I'll try to put some of the video up for viewing.

No paddling this weekend for Boo and I. But we were loaded like something was going to happen. Saturday was spent driving back and forth from Oconomowoc to Shorewood. Emily had homecoming this weekend, so it was all about getting ready. The dance the game the hair... the 1/2 Nelson on the boy taking her.

Boo and I ended up playing board games, watching videos and going out for a great dinner at the Oakcrest Tavern and Grille.

Sunday it poured all day. With the temps. in the 40's we gave paddling a pass and headed to the movies.

Missed paddling opportunities - Come January when the temps are 5 above zero, you'd pass a kidney stone for paddle weekends like this.- The Capt'n

Friday, October 12, 2007

Norbert Rosing's striking images

Norbert Rosing's striking images of a wild polar bear playing with sled dogs in the wilds of Canada's Hudson Bay.

The photographer was sure that he was going to see the end of his huskies when the polar bear
materialized out of the blue, as it were:

Adventure on!! - The Capt'n

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Around in Ten

From the website
It has never been done before so these guys will be sailing into the history books to be the smallest boats to circumnavigate the globe.
The goal is to beat world record set in 1987 by Serge Testa in his 11ft 10in boat “Acrohc Australis
Of the Vendée Globe the handyman escaping to his workshop or shed in the garden can only dream. With Around in Ten he can build and make his dreams become a reality.
Some of the micro sailing discussion boards are picking up on the up-coming Around inTen event. It amazes me even further that the buzz is less then positive, bordering on un-supportive.
A great quote that I have used more then once:
"Break loose from all the usual excuses and conventions that keep you bound to a lifestyle that does not totally fulfill". -Verlen Kruger
This is off the chart, fulfil those dreams my fellow Captain's - The Capt'n

The Beast!

The "Beast" Scout. 1/2 Shepard 1/2 moose. How a dog should be! No Bark No Bite!!

Scout on a stroll, on the beach! He loves the water!

Play time! Tag you're it!

No paddling. Spent the better part of the morning getting the stench off of him. He rolled in something awful! How awful? On the way back in the car I puked!

What a goof!! - The Capt'n

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

PEAK's Hardcore Adventure Camp


Here is a short clip of our last night on the river during the Hardcore Adventure Camp. We had 21 adult mentors and youth on what turned out to be one of our most rewarding adventures to date.

Big thanks to all who participated! A special thanks to Tommy who caught this memorable moment on the Iowa Mississippi shoreline.

The Hardcore Adventure Camp took us 92 miles in 3 1/2 days. A dip of the paddle to Kruger Canoe Company owner Mark Przedwojewski and co-facilitator Jack Cramer for the Kruger canoes, the motivation and the goal setting with the kids.

Success through team work! - The Capt'n

Sunday, October 7, 2007

What the ...

More balmy weather...

Laura and I got out early for a run and a paddle. Another amazing October morning. The plan had us meeting back at the house around 10:00am. Laura would run the Drumlin trail right down the road from our house and I would take a lap around the lake. A nice brunch, a drive in the country a... What the....

Meet the neighbors dog

A new couple moved into the house 3 doors down from us. Laura got the chance to meet their dog. This unruly mutt ran across the street and bit her right in the butt. Not as funny as it might initially sound. This was no Tom and Jerry cartoon experience.

Two hours in the ER. Heavy doze of antibiotics. police report and a less then friendly exchange with the dog owners. I wouldn't say it was an international incident, but we didn't get the co-operation or sympathy we were looking for.

No apologies, no offer to help... Their response: "*hit happens".

Get your check book out - It's gonna cost ya - The Capt'n

Mad about boats

ULS Barn Sale and Auction
Handful of scows on he auction block. I had to bring Laura with me to keep me in check. The ULS Barn sale and auction is a dangerous place to be. Sailboats went from $125.00 to $1500.00. The Capt'n was in heaven.

There where three sailboards on the auction block. One could use the sailing rig on a canoe if configured correctly. Hmm? Let the auction begin!

Here was an 8' wooden pram. Not sure why the frenzy over this dry rot pram, but it end up going for a couple hundred dollars. The two wooden sunfish (board boats) to the right - went for $100.00 bucks... I figured I was in trouble.... it's gonna cost me.

Pacing ourselves in the pre -auction heat. Temps soared into the 90's. The barley pops kept out hydration in check.

After bidding on three of the sail boards in the auction, I came home with a pretty nice board and two sets of sails. The challenge now will be effectively attaching assembling a system that will work efficiently and with out failure. Both sail are practically brand new. The one shown is Mylar and actually matches the color of my Sea Wind.

Some things I need to factor in: Stow ability - reefing - simplicity. In fact the simpler the better. Equipment failure is not an option at sea while paddle sailing a canoe.

Laura is a trouper - she waited 2 1/2 hours while I perused the boats on the auction block - what a gal! - The Capt'n

Friday, October 5, 2007

As luck would have it


It’s a mystery –

The great weather early October has made for some un-believable paddling opportunities. I have been hitting the “O” Dark 30 paddle as much as I can. How did we get so lucky?!

The shoal – no wake buoys will soon be pulled out for the winter. They are spaced out pretty evenly around the lake... It makes for great interval training, going from buoy to buoy... you can see them pretty good in the pre-dawn with the reflective tape.... plus they keep the renegade fisherman that zips across the lake from tagging you in his bass boat.


Energy level is high at one of my favorite paddling shops. The Rock River Canoe Company is always a good place to stop late afternoon to share tall tales of adventure of past and future.


Yesterday's yarn included a mob of young Gypsy girls who where professional pick pockets in Rome Italy. "more wine for my generals!"



There is a 1/2 a dozen or so small craft being built in the main building and a and few more in the outbuilding Lots of fun to come down and talk to the builders.


Let's paddle - The Capt'n