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Deception Pass and Combat kayaking with Dubside!
Wednesday, August 15, 2007


That a long title to this blog, but I've had a busy couple of days! I spent yesterday filming Dubside, Warren Williamson, Mathew and Tom Sharp ripping it up in Deception Pass with their seakayaks and greenland style blades. Warren has been paddling almost exclusively at Deception Pass for 7 years and it shows as he slides his boat effortlessly into frightening looking whirlpools and then does a roll on a turbulent eddy line, just for fun. His favourite trick seemed to be floating downstream through swirling whitewater with his boat upside down and only his face out of the water on one side. I've seen people in this position before, but only in moments of panic. In contrast, Warren could have been whistling his favourite song he looked so relaxed! Towards the end of the session he wasn't wasting energy playing in the waves unless a boat sped past adding a bit more excitement with it's wake! It's only Dubside's 3rd or 4th time at Deception Pass but he also looked great snaking up the eddylines and spinning in the whirlpools and he certainly wan't afraid of being capsized as he could just call up one of his 30 or so different rolls.

I also filmed Dubside doing some of his rope tricks - there wasn't time for me to have a go - luckily as I certainly couldn't have pulled my body over the top of a high rope using only 2 fingers!

Today I tagged along with Dubside in Everett where he lives doing his favourite thing - Comando kayaking. Dressed all in black and pulling a small black troley containing his feathercraft folding kayak he surepticiously catches a bus across town. He blends in perfectly which is his aim, but if you look very closely you'll see the black wetsuit boots and the zip of the farmer john wetsuit under his black jacket. If he's careless you might spot an ankle length dreadlock poking out from the bottom of his trousers - although he refused to let me film this - "It's not about the dreadlocks!".

So we caught 2 busses then pulled our folding kayaks a few hundred meters to a river. Dubside put both kayaks together in less than 30mins and we were ready to go. Far from resenting the several hours taken to cath busses and put the kayaks together, Dubside loves the independance of not needing a car, and has a huge grin on his face as he tells me he can pull his kayak out the water wherever he wants, he doesn't have to come back to the same place - provided there's a bus stop nearby of course! And I have to admit I did find it a little exciting to be on this unusual sort of adventure ( although my bright red clothing didn't quite fit in with the stealth approach!) It was kind of cool to be floating down a river with the current, seeing all the trucks and cars wizz past on bridges above us while watching ospreys interacting on pilings, having seals pop their heads up behind us and a blue heron fly in front of the kayaks. We were in the city but removed from it - observers.

Anyone interested in Dubside should check out his website by clicking here. YOu can also buy DVDs of him rolling or doing his rope tricks. Thanks to Tom Sharp for driving me around and making this filming happen!

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

dreadlocks to his ANKLES???!!!

1:00 pm  
Anonymous jim said...

Hi i have just returned to Scotland after scattering my late stepfathers ashes over the bridge what a lovely place.

1:54 pm  

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