Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Paddle Faster?

The final race results of the Ultimate Florida Challenge is pictured below (from the WaterTribe website). There were 3 sets of finishing times, 19 days, 26 days, and 29 days. There was a 10 day difference between the 1st place finishers, and those in the final group (me), not an insignificant amount.

I recently started a new thread on the WaterTribe forum titled I want to be faster. There is a wealth of information offered in this thread for the paddler who is interested in expeditioning, endurance paddling or small boat sailing, and/or racing. It's well worth the read. In fact, the forum in general is always an incredible source of information, boat design, paddle choices, camping gear, sail rigs, everything; not just limited to the WaterTribe Challenges. These folks are the experts.

2005 Everglades Challenge Finishers at Key Largo Awards Ceremony

Please do not mistake my query to mean I was disappointed in my performance. I am thrilled about my Challenge, and very pleased with my accomplishment. I never hoped for more than to finish; I not only finished, I finished happy and healthy. I’ve said it before, there are very few things I am more proud of than being a WaterTribe veteran. I’m not a “racer’, and not really interested in racing, I like expedition, camping, and long distance paddling. I like personal challenges, and, I guess I like hanging around some of these racers :)

As is true of most paddlers, I am always interested in the continued work of improving technique, speed, and efficiency. Towards that end I'll keep on working, and will develop a more formal training plan, and may even keep track of my accomplishments on Marek's (Wayfarer) Virtual Training Page. So I plan to follow the advice offered in the thread, and throughout the forum. And I'll see you on the beach in Tampa Bay next year for the 2007 Everglades Challenge.

1 comment:

Michael said...


Thanks for posting this picture of the finishers. I was at the Sweetwater kayak symposium the week prior to the start of the Challenge and met some people planning to compete. Can I see their faces in your picture? I think so! You're all so terrific!

Good for you for competing and for finishing!