Rough Water Kayaking in Norway

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It’s that time of year where I don’t get out paddling very much. Devil Track Lake, which I live on, just froze over completely and while the big lake is open, I just ain’t all that motivated to go paddling on it. I’m in that mode where I’ll get out once a month on Lake Superior to try and continue my record of paddling once a month, every month, on the big lake, but I’ll grit my teeth when I do it.

Here’s an image from this month’s paddle:

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I do need to get out paddling in the next couple of days though, because I bought a Nikon AW1, which is the new interchangeable lens camera system from Nikon. It uses the Nikon 1 series of mirrorless cameras as it’s basic building blocks and then makes it waterproof, durable and freezeproof. I’ve tested it on land over the last few days, and am planning on trying it out on the water, but with temps below freezing and strong winds predicted and snow, I’m less motivated to get out, especially since almost all my winter paddling ends up being solo. This time of the year, it just doesn’t sound fun to go paddling in sub-freezing temps and winds gusting to 20.

Just because I’m not having any sea kayaking fun, it doesn’t mean that I’m not dreaming about it. If you’re in the same boat, you should check out Roald Holm’s videos on Vimeo. These two guys are paddling rough water in rock gardens in Norway and having a blast. It just makes me want to find a place to do this and take a class about rock gardening.

It looks like Roald shot the videos with two GoPro cameras. One on his helmet and one on the bow of his kayak just forward of his compass (and offset to the side). The video setup of two GoPro cameras works perfect and makes me want to keep my GoPro and get a helmet mount for a second one — because so far I haven’t done much with mine, other than to shoot some video in the surf and some while practicing eddy turns in my sea kayak after a flood at Tettegouche State Park. I’m not really sure what to do with all the video I shot, because most of it is rather boring. I think what makes this work is that the helmet cam action is always shot close to the second kayaker, so the second kayaker looks in your face. That means the the shooter was right in the action as well. Great paddlers and great filmmaking going on in this video. I sure hope that these two make a film of a longer expedition, because I’d love to see these techniques put to practice in something longer.

Their black Romanys are sweet! I want one. And, because I’ve been shopping for a logo for my kayak guiding company, I can’t help but have logo envy about the Neptune stickers on their kayaks. These guys look like they’re living the dream!

Here’s one of his videos:

And one more:

I hope you enjoy these inspiring videos as much as I did.


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5 Comments

  1. Ian Perrigard
    Posted November 24, 2013 at 8:13 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the link. 10 great vids on his site. I google mapped Hellesto beach and noticed there’s an airport a few clicks away ! Next blog post from Hellesto beach Bryan? :)

    Those slick black Romanys seem to have a tendency to turn back to a surf position after broaching on the breaking wave. Is that a characteristic of the boat, or the skill of the paddler? Once my Boreal Baffin broaches I find it near impossible to do anything but side surf in. Just one more thing i need to learn to do?

    cheers.

    • Posted November 25, 2013 at 8:44 am | Permalink

      The Romany is an easy boat to control, but I’d chalk it up to the skill of the paddlers. Still, I think you’d notice a massive difference between a Romany and a Baffin. The Romany is my favorite kayak to paddle.

      I’d love to paddle there and Norway is beautiful, so you never know…the water is probably warmer than Lake Superior. :)

  2. Posted November 27, 2013 at 11:46 am | Permalink

    I also felt frustrated if I feel like doing kayaking but I couldn’t. This videos are freaking awesome! There water adventure is very extreme but I do admire them, they really did great with their kayak. Just don’t stress your self too much, you will still going to enjoy yourself paddling on Devil Track Lake.

    • Posted November 28, 2013 at 8:37 am | Permalink

      Lake Superior stays open all winter long, so I’ll get some paddling in, and pretty soon I’ll be skiing on Devil Track.

  3. Posted December 7, 2013 at 8:42 am | Permalink

    Bryan,
    Thanks for posting the links to these great videos. After watching the videos, I, like you, am going to be getting a helmet mount for my GoPro. The videos are amazing, and having the other GoPro on the bow really help with making for interesting videos. Hope you can get out paddling the next few days!

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