West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium Third Annual Greenland Rolling Demo (2007)

2007 bowling ball roll cover image

I can hear it already: "Oh no -- not yet another Greenland rolling video!"  Yes, it's true!  But this is better than any rolling demo you've ever seen -- really! In this video, The West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium Greenland Rolling Demo 2007, Leon Sommé of Body Boat Blade and Greenland rolling guru Dubside (in his shiny new custom Sterling Kayaks IceKap) are at it again with even more ridiculously difficult and impossible rolls, along with Shawna Franklin and Cathy Miller in a NDK Triton double sea kayak, and 10 year-old McKinley rolling with a bowling ball in her skin-on-frame Yost Sea Flea.

I was lucky enough to record the 1st annual "Roll Off" featuring Leon Sommé and Dubside at the West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium in 2005, not knowing at all what to expect.  That show totally blew me away!  It was a unique event, unlike any Greenland rolling demo I'd seen before, with Leon performing with a NDK Romany and Werner Ikelos paddle, and Dubside in a variety of boats, including his black Feathercraft Wisper.  It was informal and friendly, with a great vibe coming from the crowd, many who knew Leon as kayak royalty and Dubside as the new rock star of Greenland-style. Dubside even used a few seconds of my video in his Greenland Rolling with Dubside -- look for my name in the credits!

West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium Greenland Rolling Demo 2007 from Baby Seal Films on Vimeo.

A Conversation with Derek Hutchinson

A Conversation With Derek Hutchinson from Baby Seal Films on Vimeo.

While looking for famous kayaking personalities on the demo beach during the 2007 West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium Richard Lovering and I cornered international sea kayaking authority Derek Hutchinson, considered by many to be the “Father of Modern Sea Kayaking”.  He was gracious enough to grant us a fascinating interview on camera where he shares his thoughts about the British Canoe Union, kayak and paddle design, Greenland Style kayaking, paddling in England, and the origin of the modern sea kayak.  Kayak designer Matt Broze of Mariner Kayaks also makes an appearance. 

Derek Hutchinson is a Senior coach (BCU's highest award) for the British Canoe Union.  He is most known for his crossing of the North Sea in a single kayak (without any support vessels).  Derek wrote the first book about kayaking on the open sea, Sea Canoeing, now titled The Complete Book of Sea Kayaking, in 1974.  His other books include The Basic Book of Sea Kayaking, Expedition Kayaking, and Eskimo Rolling.  He is also featured in the video Beyond the Cockpit, produced in partnership with University of Sea Kayaking founder Wayne Horodowich.  That video is where I learned how to perform a low brace turn while holding the paddle behind my neck and my hat in an outstreched hand!

Corey Freedman's Skin-On-Frame Baidarka at the 2005 West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium

A skin-on-frame baidarka at the West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium. Photo Copyright ©2005 Andrew Elizaga

Here is a pic of Corey Freedman's skin-on-frame baidarka on display at the 2005 Port Townsend West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium.  It's on a scale hanging under a bamboo tripod. That's Corey in the back with the orange shorts and blue hat.

Skin on frame baidarka at the West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium. Photo Copyright ©2005 Andrew Elizaga

Early in the day the scale read 18 lbs, but it must have started to stretch and later on it read somewhere between 23-24 lbs.  Still pretty light!

Building the cedar strip Shooting Star baidarka. Photo Copyright ©2005 Andrew Elizaga

Now for mine: I went over the hull with a scraper and scraped down the high spots and got rid of all the areas of dried glue.  I shaped the bow piece a little bit with a crooked knife.  Next I need to fill in some holes with wood slivers and wood filler.  That's a good place to stop before I leave for Japan, because the next step is sanding, which is going to make a real mess.

Note the insulation I put on the garage door.

West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium Roll Off 2005 With Leon Sommé and Dubside!

West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium Roll Off. Photo Copyright ©2005 Andrew Elizaga

The highlight of the 2005 West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium for me was the "Roll Off".  I don't know if that was the formal name for the event, but it was the Greenland rolling demo with Dubside and Leon Sommé, from Body Boat Blade.   When I took the 5-day kayak camp with Leon and Shawna Franklin in May, Leon told me that his goal was to be able to do all the Greenland rolls with a "Euro-blade", and it looks like he's gotten close to getting them all.  Dubside started the "Roll Off" paddling a bright orange Ocean Kayak sit-on-top, then switched to another short fat plastic tub, then finally to his black Feathercraft Wisper.

West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium Greenland Rolling Demo 2005 from Baby Seal Films on Vimeo.