Paddlinglight.com is an online resource for paddlers. It offers information about lightweight canoe and kayak travel, how-to articles, trip reports, adventure stories, kayak and canoe plans, and reviews. We promote self-direction by emphasizing the do-it-yourself culture in the sport of paddling, and we believe growing paddlesport participation advances wilderness protection.
People protect what they love. -Jacques Yves Cousteau
The more you know, the less you carry. -Mors Kochanski
Go light; the lighter the better, so that you have the simplest material for health, comfort and enjoyment. – Nessmuk
Check out Paddlinglight’s Lightweight Paddling Philosophy.
Bryan Hansel: Owner, Author
Bryan started Paddlinglight.com to spread knowledge about the techniques and benefits of lightweight canoe and kayak travel. He’s thankful for all the support the readers have given over the years. He now serves as a freelance writer for PaddlingLight.
Bryan is a photographer, writer, and a sea-kayaking instructor. He hold a Wilderness First Responder certification and an American Canoe Association Level 4 Open Water Coastal Kayaking Instructor certification. His articles and pictures have appeared in several paddling magazines. He has canoed and kayaked in the Boundary Waters, the Great Lakes, as far away as Norway and in many other places. Bryan also sits on the board for Wilderness Classroom, and he owned a kayak guiding business at one point. He lives in Grand Marais, MN.
Predro Almeida describes how to make rope handles for your kayak. About Predro: I’m 37, married, and have a great little 4 year old boy who will hopefully be a future sea kayaker. I’m a Firefighter/EMT in one of the busiest areas of Miami-Dade county where I work with an awesome crew. Before that, I was a Physical Therapist (I’m still licensed) and before that I was a US Marine (Force Recon). I’m relatively new to sea kayaking, but I’m no stranger to the sea. I spent lots of time on and in the ocean as I was growing up; my father always owned a boat. I also spent lots of time on and in the water as a Recon Marine. Before I built my Cape Ann Expedition, I hadn’t paddled a narrow kayak before. I do own another kayak; it’s a wide, short, plastic Hydra that is designed to be paddled or sailed. It’s not the most efficient thing to paddle, but when the breeze is blowing, it can be a blast to sail. I’ve also occasionally paddled canoes. My other hobbies are Hang Gliding and Woodworking.
Rick Beaty writes about paddling and adventure at Crooked Blue Line. To pay the bills between adventures he trades in gold and silver rare coins in Boston. He’s a section paddler of the NFCT who enjoys nothing more than canoeing the great rivers of Maine. He reviews the Bushbuddy Ultra Wood-burning Stove.
Bill Collet is an experienced canoeist living on the mighty Mississippi in Iowa. He write about his trip on the Namekagon, St. Croix, and the Mississippi.
Christopher Crowhurst is a self confessed Greenland rolling addict, hailing from Minnesota. Recently he published an innovative waterproof guidebook to kayak rolling designed to be used afloat, available at http://rollingwithsticks.com. He write about Shoulder Exercises for Kayaking.
Dave Freeman is an educator and wilderness guide. He has worked as a dogsledding, sea kayaking, and canoeing instructor for 15 years, introducing hundreds of people to wilderness travel. He and wife are in the middle of 3 year, 11,000 mile journey across North America by canoe, kayak, and dogsled. www.NorthAmericanOdyssey.com
Amy Funk writes about Why She Canoes. She runs Campgirlz.com which was created to encourage girls of all ages, from 1-99, to explore nature! It is dedicated to all girls, young and old, who have a passion for the outdoors. Is your passion hiking, bird watching, skiing, canoeing, kayaking, camping, and/or star gazing? Do you like to explore & play in the dirt? Then, you are you a camp girl. Don’t worry if you live in a city- your own backyard or local park can be a wild place to explore.
Tim Gallaway is an ACA L4 sea-kayak instructor, guide and Greenland-style paddling buff based out of the eastern end of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. When not teaching the subtle arts of sea kayaking you can expect to find Tim on long solo expeditions, in the surf and rock gardens, building Greenland style skin-on-frame kayaks or running local whitewater in “his other boat.” In the frozen water season, Tim is a mechanical engineering student. Read his other contributions: Head North to Old Woman: A Lake Superior Kayaking Adventure, THE SKELETON COAST: Paddling Lake Superior’s Desolate Southeast Coast and Ninja Paddling – The Path of the Ninja Paddler. Check out his website Kayaking to the Sea.
Richard “Doc” Gams
Richard “Doc” Gams writes, “After a year of paddling, I still feel I can call myself “beginner”. I’ve been paddling and camping and survived a class II run down the Middle Yough. I’m transitioning to retirement – half time at work for another year, then calling it quits. I’m 72 years old this October.” He writes about is 2007 BWCA in Last Day in Paradise.
“Eskimo” Tom Gerd
“Eskimo” Tom Gerds was adopted in Bethel Alaska and grew up in Wisconsin and Minnesota. He designs and builds wood boats at his home in Elk River Minnesota. He is an avid paddler and all season camper. You can learn more about his custom designs and building services at Finewoodwatercraft.com. For Paddlinglight, he’s written Nessmuking and Stitch and Glue Boat Building.
Richard F. Hayes
As befits a Newfoundlander, Richard Hayes lives for the time spent on the waters that wash the spectacularly beautiful shores of the world’s 16th largest island. He and his wife Chris Mousseau have enjoyed canoeing together for over thirty years, and started sea-kayaking about seven years ago. With over 9,650 kilometers of coastline to explore (not to mention the 7,800 kms.+along the Labrador coast, and the gazillion lakes, ponds and rivers in the island’s interior!), he reckons they live in the perfect place to put the VOLKSKAYAKs and paddles they build through their paces. He also makes The Simplest of Seats
Aaron Miller knows about composite use in canoe and kayak construction, and he’s willing to share his knowledge.
This year, Jay Morrison is attempting to become the first person to paddle solo across Canada from the Atlantic to the Arctic Ocean in a single year. Read about his adventure at The Great Canadian Canoe Quest. The canoe he is paddling was built with lightweight techniques.
Jim Muller is a Leave No Trace Master Educator. He has been an American Canoe Association Certified Paddling and Basic River Instructor for kayaks, solo and tandem canoes. He enjoys canoeing during warm months and winter camping (www.WinterCampers.com) during the cold months. He writes about Guerrilla Camping.
Scott Schuldt is a Seattle based artist working in content- and concept-driven art (non-fiction, detailed and often narrative). Born and raised in Minnesota and schooled in engineering, Scott dropped the engineering career in 2005 to pursue artwork on a full time basis. His primary medium is hand-sewn beadwork, but has increasingly moved towards working with whatever medium will get the story across. ‘The View from the Canoe’ is his first step into writing and film work. The View from the Canoe Blog is found at- canoepost.blogspot.com Scott’s website – www.scottschuldt.com
Jeremy Vore is a passionate communicator, teacher, and dad who lives on the south shore of Lake Superior. In his spare time, he writes, teaches sea kayaking and builds things with wood. His website is The Art of Paddling. He reviews Lawson Hammock’s Blue Ridge Creek Camping Hammock.
Shipp Webb writes about his 2006 solo Boundary Waters adventure in an article called Up a Lazy River.