Monday, October 01, 2007

Vacation to Hell

Don't know if you've heard of the Immersion Research Competition for the IR Vacation to Hell. They just posted the results of the 2nd annual vacation, which alternates between a white water and seakayaking expedition. IR refers to the contest as an expeditionary grant. This year's trip is a 300 mile sea kayaking trip, starting at Baffin Island in the Canadian Arctic, paddling northward to Devon Island, then ending on Ellesmere Island. Included is a 60 mile open water crossing, a 45 mile over-land crossing, finishing with a 45 mile open water crossing. Not for the risk averse, expert paddlers need only apply.

Applications (video with accompanying bios) go in without even knowing where the trip is, knowing only that a team of 4 will be judged on their ability to endure the hardships and technical challenges found on a multi-day expedition to a remote location. Winners were selected by online vote, and were announced at the West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium.

Check out the basic rules here.
Check out the entry video's here.

This year's winner was Team Sweetwater, headed by Russell Farrow, a partner at Sweetwater Kayaks in Tampa Florida. Their entry application video included shots from the Labrador trip most of the members made a couple years ago. Russell was one of the instructors and a presenters at a Barrier Island Kayaks Symposium here in Swansboro N.C, a couple years ago. I was there and heard him present this trip, where gear included shotguns and electric fences for the polar bears.

I'm certainly one for challenges, and don't shy away from them. But I do know the difference between a challenge and a vacation. Hell's not one of the things on my 'to do' list.


Michael said...

Gee Dawn, I know Russell, and I've been to northern Baffin. Maybe I ought to give him a call. Sounds like a great trip! ;-)

Kristen said...


Capt'n "O" Dark 30 said...

I'm out... paddling the silky glass of a midwestern lake and river is this ole dogs speed... well OK, i'll go if you do!! :-)