Sunday, October 25, 2009

The sad end of a fantastic seakayak ;-(

This afternoon I went to Castricum to paddle in surf conditions again. Two weeks ago I had a hard struggle to break through the dumping surf with the ww-kayak, but today wind was less powerfull and I decided to take the Anas Acuta seakayak. I love surfing with this kayak. It really was much easier to break out through the surf zone and to reach the bigger stuff a bit further away from the beach. Paddling (=surfing) back to the beach I enjoyed nice surf-rides, steering and bracing with the paddle left and right, flipped over and rolled up. After this warming up, and even more confident I turned around and paddled out again for a second ride. But then a giant monster-wave rose in front of me. It was too late to let it break or to step aside, so I decided to enter it with power. Alas: my power was nothing compared with the power of this wave. The wave set 5 meters of kayak vertical and flipped me over backwards. It felt as if I was thrown through the air and then I was smashed in the water again (upside down). As I tried to roll up, the stern of the kayak didn't follow the rest of the kayak. A second wave came over me and, as I noticed I had no control over the kayak any-more, I did a wet-exit. The kayak was broken in the middle, just behind the cockpit, only the deck-lines kept the two pieces together.
Anoushka had seen what happened and soon came to rescue me. With one hand on the stern of her kayak and the other hand on the stern of my broken kayak I swam and Anoushka paddled me back to the beach.

Well, the cartwheel (NL: radslag) looked spectacular according to my friends, but that is only a weak consolation at the broken Anas Acuta. I was so happy with this kayak. I am afraid this is a total-loss ;-(

Nevertheless: it was a fantastic paddling afternoon, with perfect surf-conditions and in good company! We had a lot of fun.

I am looking forward for the next time (but I'll think twice before I do this with a kevlar-carbon seakayak-again - duur leergeld...).

More pictures in the Picasa-webalbum.


Mike Devlin said...

Hans, A sad but safe storey..... tha Anas is expensive to replace but nothing compared to being injured...
Just reminds us of the power of the ocean :-)


Tom Steenbergen said...

Hans, Very sorry to hear you lost this beautiful kajak.
Do you think a roll into the first wave might have avoided this disaster, instead of powerstroking into it.
- Tom -

Ad Moerman said...

Ha Hans,

Gecondoleerd met het heen gaan van die mooie boot! Foto's zien er niettemin fantastisch uit.

Groet Ad

Jörgen said...

Well Hans,

Now you have a two piece kayak. This will be less costly on a what will be your dream destination??

Michael Herrmann said...


sorry to hear of the bad luck you had yesterday!

Do you consider to sell the remains of your kayak? Would be interested in case...


René said...

Hi Hans,
Very, very pity indeed. You have my sympathy.

But you are right not to enter surf again with a carbon kayak. I am almost sure a diolene/glasfiber kayak would not have been broken like yours; just snapped in two pieces along a very straigth line.

The trend nowadays to build lighter and lighter kayaks has it limits, as is yet proved.

But don't throw her away. I still believe she can be repaired.

Good luck

Wieger said...

Hi Hans,
I'm really curious if you and Rene can fix this!
Seems like a logical next challenge for Rene.
And really love your pictures
Hope you keep coming to the Castricum surf

Best Regards, Wieger

bonnie said...


Anonymous said...

Hans, I have met paddlers who have done the same damage to their kayaks. Half of them were fixable. The good thing is that a broken kayak is easier to mend than your body. I am glad to hear that you were not hurt. - Jeff Fabiszewski

gnarlydog said...

judging by the pix it appears to be a clean brake.
Nothing a bit of epoxy resin and glass can't fix :-)
Working through the confines of the rear hatch however might be a bit tricky, at least it's a large hatch.
Give it a go, you can't make any worse than what it is now.

Axel said...

Hi Hans
read about this in the - Luky nothing worth happened. Agreet to the others - your Kayak could be fixed with not too much effort.
Check this for inspiration - in german but I guess you will undertand - and this site is also good

Regards from CH,

Paul said...

Hi Hans,
No worries, surely René can fix this. Pity there is no picture of your cartwheel but luckily you're still in one piece!

Axel said...

Hi Hans
does the break starts near by the Rope-Guide direct next to the cockpit? If yes - it follows the contour of the dayhatch and the brack on the bottom looks like a cut of a knife - it looks like a design or fabrication fault - I would contact the vendor for a repair or replacement. Even when you are in a surf - that shouldn't happen.
For Repair think about erasing the Rope-Guides and earsing of the dayhatch to get a smooth ans even surface. For the schott think about a minicell foam schott - that can deform during high stress...

Kaat said...

Oooooooeeeeeeiii! O Hans! I feel very sad about your beautiful boot. Glad you only broke a kayak not your back.
I will think twice before smashing thru the next "joekel" of a breaker. Theo And I were surfing with Peddelpraat in Zandvoort and I had one near accident with à tow line in the surf.

Wenley said...

Wow! People will mumble in pubs about this for years....

Björn Thomasson said...

Hans, the same thing happened to me a few years ago, and like one of the commenteers I also suspect that some forced rolls sidways instead of trying to power through the wave would have had less serious consequenses. Now the kayak hade to spend a few days in the workshop before, being restored to working condition...

Michiel said...

Hi Hans, I just read this post although it is over a year old. I guess you never got around to have the boat repaired but any good repairman (like Jan van Sluis of Werkendam) should be able to fix this boat and make it look like almost new.