Monday, April 30, 2007

Koninginnedag, "Rondje Kamerik" in the K1 racer

The second portage on the "Rondje Kamerik".

I made this morning my own private "Koninginnedag-party". Janine and Jelle are on holiday (in Jordan), Lieke stays with granddad and grandmamma for a few days. So I got the house for myself (and unlike all the other fathers accompanying their kids on the traditional flea-markets and Quens-day fairs: no obligations!). No obligations? Finally there is time to do all the little jobs in and around the house I promised to do and that are waiting far to long to be done ;-(
Koninginnedag in Woerden: familyday with flea-market

Of course it would be a pity to spent a public holiday only doing useful things. So I decided to get up early and to start the day with a paddle. Because I wanted to do a lot of other things I limited my kayak time. I went to the boat-house and took the K 1 racer with the Brasca wing-paddle for the shortest circular paddle trip you can do around Woerden: the "rondje Kamerik": 9,5 km's, with two portages. It was the first time I took the racer out for a solo paddle this year. With the cold water I paddled this unstable racer last weeks in company with Gus (a rescuer on a safe distance). But on this beautiful day I went out alone in T-shirt and shorts (with a drybag with towel and spare clothes on board...). And the trip passed of without any incident: a real confidence booster! The portages were a delight with this lightweight kayak. I really start to love the combination of the racer and the wing paddle. I forgot to stop the exact time, but I have got the impression I broke a personal record. A very promising experience. The goal is to paddle the marathon-distance of this years' "Rondje Groene Hart" in the racer. I don't intend to paddle the 42 km in a very fast pace, I am already confident when I manage to survive the distance in the spartan racer. After the experience of this morning it looks like a realizable ambition (thoufh I still need some practice). And If I only can find a seat for this kayak! My buttock hurts after an hour sitting on that stupid foam block.

Google-Earth view of the "Rondje Kamerik" - click on the picture to view the track of the kayak-route ( Sorry, I don't know how to edit the thickness of the lines in Google Earth).


Rene said...

Hi Hans,
I have the same experience that paddling "on wings" is most effective, you might also call it "most convenient", in a K1-racer. Probably because you have much more hip-movement in such a kayak. And that is something you need quite a lot with a wing.

Adapting the same wing to a seakayak means as well that it will not give the same experience because you are a little bit limited in your movements when compared to the K1-Racer.

But: there are differences between seakayaks and I, being in the situation having more than 1 seakayak, choose the kayak "for the day" thinking about these details.
Best for wingpaddling is a seakayak offering the posibilitty of paddling with the knees close together like in the racer. To compensate for the loss of knee-contact doing so, the seakayak must react perfectly on only hip-contact and -movements.

Buy the way:
Ever thought of eskimorolling in a K1-racer?????????
When applying a thick sheet or block of foam on your knees, like Freya uses when performing rolls, it should be possible. Give it a try.
When you can roll in it, you extend the usage of the racer quite a bit.
Once I made a circumnavigation-tour in the neighbourhood of TheHague and did a part of the tour, paddling a K1-racer, on the sea from Scheveningen to Poeldijk. Quit an experience.

Hans said...

Hi René!
Rolling the K1 with this K1 open cockpit: I will drop out, before I even can think of it. My knees are in the open air... Perhaps I should fix a pair of tigh-braces-straps like some sit-on-tops have...