Friday, February 9, 2018

The Stoutside Ball

My favorite part of the Paddle Golden Gate Sea Kayak Symposium is the post symposium shenanigans.  Often a crew of paddlers stop by Liquid Fusion's headquarters on the Mendocino Coast to decompress from the symposium.  Of course rock gardening is part of the adventure.  This year we had 2 groups stop by. The first was a crew of whitewater kayakers.

What happens when you get a crew of "sea-curious" whitewater kayakers out in sea kayaks for a rock garden expression session?  You get the Stoutside Ball.

The ocean was rowdy.  Our team of whitewater kayakers have the strokes and skills.  Today was seeing if they could put them together to dance with the sea.  Jeff shares the Plan, Position, Perform concept with them as it applies to timing pour-over rides and surfing through the rocks.

We reviewed the safety concept of "Outside" and went off to play.  "Outside" is a term that we use when a bigger wave is coming.  When a big wave is spotted, we yell "Outside."  Everyone yells it to make sure that everyone on the team knows.  Individuals then are responsible for making sure they are in a safe spot.
Jeff Laxier teaches the "Outside" strategy.
The day started off with some class fun pour-overs in the bay.  The guys were getting their sea legs and working on their timing on pour-overs.

Demshitz Dave Fusilli getting his rock garden boof stroke down #seaboof.
After a warm-up, we threaded the needle through some technical rock garden passages - surfing through sea caves and tunnels and dancing in slosh-pits.
Through the Tunnel of Love.
Snowy Robertson surfs through the slosh pit.
Our journey took us to an area with several pour-over options.  The medium tide and chunky swell made for fluffy pour-over rides with gaping hydraulic landings.
Jeff Laxier looking good on a pour-over ride in his Dagger Stratos.
Jeff and his 14.5 foot kayak swallowed by the hydraulic. Then the sea spit him out.
After several rides, the gang started to get the feeling for timing the waves and were looking for the bigger waves to get bigger rides.  When the larger sets would hit the outer reefs, the gang started calling "STOUT!"  Hence the term "Stoutside" was coined.
Max Blackburn on the pour-over with perfect timing.
Dave rides a fluffy stout. #stoutside
Snowy with a well timed boof stroke. #seaboof
During our play session, many "Stouts" were ridden and many were watched with awe.
Cate Hawthorne riding a Stout! #stoutside
Going to the ball isn't all about showing off your dance moves but sharing the dance with others.

Jeff Laxier surfing his sea canoe.
Thanks so much Dave, Max, and Snowy!!! It was so much fun to be on the water with yinz and share your energy and stoke. Check out a video short of our adventures on Immersion Research's Instagram and Facebook .

Instagram users share your whitewater of the sea inspired photos and videos with hashtags #stoutside #seaboof and #whitewaterofthesea. And watch for more from @womanonwater @jefflaxier @liquidfusionkayak 
Sea kayak rock gardening on the Mendocino Coast of California.

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