Paddle Me.

click for larger, or Movescount data

So, let’s just jump right in to it. Yesterday, I shattered my kayaking record with a 25-mile paddle on Possum Creek and Lake Chickamauga. For a long time, my record was 20 miles – a record I wasn’t sure I’d ever break. Then, a couple weeks ago, I did 21.3 miles. So, obviously, 25 miles is a significant improvement, and I did it in just 9 hours – that’s surprisingly quick. Quick, but grueling – according to my slide ruler I keep in The Nerditorium, that’s about 27000 paddle strokes. All this without my gel seat pad and Bimini top, neither of which have arrived yet (or the replacement knee pads I ordered for the sides). Once I get that gear, I might actually be able to squeeze out a 30-mile paddle. Maybe. Because I paddle on moving water, 30 miles would mean that 15 miles of it would be upstream (just like 12ish miles was yesterday). We’ll see – but I may go for it. And you know what’s awesome? A carbon-fiber paddle. It’s super-light; there’s no way I could do 25 miles with my original fiberglass paddle. If you’re a serious paddler, it’s worth the money.

So, with that paddle, I’ve now done the entire Blueway from the town of Dayton to the Alabama state line (check out the Master Adventure Map to see everything). That’s around 90 nautical miles one-way, and it doesn’t account for all the side creeks, inlets and duplicate trips. The best I can do is extrapolate the data – I’m guessing I’ve probably done at least 500 miles total, but short of going through all my Movescount data – which I have no plan to do – I’ll probably never know for sure. Let’s just say that it’s a lot, and leave it there. Now, to start expanding northward and southward – there’s still plenty of river to explore.


Now, I’ve kinda gone a little nuts on the shopping. As previously mentioned, I ordered new stuff for the kayak, but I decided that since it’s motorcycle riding season, and my ongoing plans to tackle the Dragon, I needed to hotrod the bike a little bit more. To that end, a new Cobra Powrflo air intake, and a Cobra Fi200R Digital Fuel Processor. I’ve been thinking about adding these for awhile, and they are really the last significant improvements I need for the bike. The intake will allow much more air into the engine, and the processor will allow me to optimize the air/fuel mix (among other things) – the end result is more horsepower, better performance off the line, and an overall better experience. The intake looks much nicer than the stock “teardrop” style, which is just huge. Of course, I’ll have to install them – here’s hoping I don’t blow myself up. And, because I’m cool, I ordered more LED glow lighting to add to the existing system – I’m hoping I can figure out a way to light up the intake. We’ll see. But I need all the help being cool that I can get.

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Sad news. I was poking around on Google Earth the other day (seriously, how cool is Google Earth?), and I decided to check out my old neighborhood in Honolulu. It’s gone. Torn down. Originally, I lived in the heart of Waikiki, but then I moved to the so-called ‘burbs of Aliamanu (also known colloquially as “Red Hill”; see the gold star on the map above for the exact location on Kukui Drive), out near Aloha Stadium and Pearl Harbor. I guess the condo development was probably originally built in the 60s, so tearing it down to make way for better housing probably makes sense, but still, it’s kinda sad to know that place where I made a lot of awesome memories is gone forever (ask me sometime about the motorcycle in the living room). I’m being reminded more and more lately that nothing lasts. So, I guess the plan will be to make the most of every day, whether it’s stupidly long paddles, souping up the motorbike, or whatever. I guess.

Link:
Possum Creek Paddle Photo Album on Facebook