Athens, OH 8 April 2019 –
To get my mind off of my senior design this spring, I enrolled in kayaking! Though I have canoed and kayaked a few times in the past, I never formally learned any techniques. I thought this course would be a perfect way to learn the fundamentals and have a chance to spend some time outdoors.
The first couple of classes were taught in the aquatics center to practice basic paddling strokes and maneuverability. The best exercise was the wet exits where students had to exit the kayak after flipping over.
During the weekend skills portion of the class, the class went to Dow Lake, Burr Oak Lake, and the Hocking River. Some light rain and high winds on Burr Oak made for excitingly rough conditions to tackle.
At the end of the second day, the students played a game similar to ultimate Frisbee but in kayaks. Unfortunately, I flipped over during the game. But I performed a wet exit and drained my kayak of water, then jumped right back into the game.
The weekend ended with a trip down the Hocking River and into the Ohio River. This was much less energy intensive than open water kayaking, as the river current helped push the kayaks downstream.
I am very glad with my decision to enroll in the course this semester. I made new friends, learned new skills, and had an awesome trip.