This has been an awesome 2014 season for us here at Body Boat Blade and we want to share some highlights and thank everyone that came out to join us on the water!
January was time to road trip to the Golden Gate Sea Kayak Symposium! It is always astounding to paddle underneath that bridge! Great people and amazing conditions made for a fun event.
Our annual surf vacation in February was an amazing week of awesome waves to surf our kayaks on, good friends to share good food and hang out in the hot tub with - including Justine Curgenven, Barry Shaw, and Sarah Outen! Thanks for coming and joining us!
March was the start of our busy season with Surf Training and Rescue classes for the Anacortes Hole in the Wall Kayak Club. Thanks to Jill and Sarah who organized the two great weekends with you all! March was also the time spent with a great group of instructors from the Washington Kayak Club - it was a cold weekend but the WKC brought plenty of enthusiasm and curiosity to the course! We also went to Deception Pass for Ocean Currents, one of our favorite places to paddle! Then down to Seattle to work again with the WKC on a Leadership and Risk Assessment workshop.
April brought us back out to Neah Bay on the coast for our BCU Coastal Leadership and 4 Star Training.
May we held a BCU UKCC Coach Level 1 Training here for some incredible local coaches! Congratulations to everyone who joined us and became a new BCU UKCC Level 1 Coach - especially Svetlana who works with us here at BBB! We then got the opportunity to go to one of our favorite kayak symposiums - the WMCKA - West Michigan Coastal Kayakers Symposium - this year was the 25th annual! We always find that folks at this event are so inviting and excited to be on the water! Thanks to Keith and everyone who made it possible for us to come back! We then went to Lansing Michigan where we worked with our friend Scott Fairty of The Power of Water. Together, Shawna and Scott delivered a fun BCU UKCC Coach Level 2 Training and Leon worked with Bonnie Perry to deliver a BCU UKCC Coach Level 1 Program.
June we got a visit from our friends Paul and Marian from the Netherlands who successfully circumnavigated Vancouver Island! Congratulations to two of the nicest and most interesting paddlers!!
July we were busy here at home in the San Juan's teaching 5 Day Kayak Camps, Body Boat Blade course, Foundations classes and some privates!
In August we sent Seth Albanese to Denmark to represent BBB. Thanks Seth for doing such a wonderful job! Another awesome 5 Day Camp and an incredible visit with our friend and fellow BCU coach Fiona Whitehead. Fiona was one of our early mentors and we so enjoyed spending time with her and getting caught up on all the years since we last saw her! Thanks Fiona for hanging out!
September starts with our annual pilgrimage to Skookumchuk Rapids in British Columbia! We also said our good-bye's to a very best friend Pat Peacock at her memorial. She will be sadly missed in our world and by many others in the kayaking community!
It is now October and we just returned from teaching at an amazing BCU week with Alder Creek Kayaks and congratulations to Seth who gained his BCU UKCC Coach Level 2 award! We will be speaking at the October 23rd WKC meeting. Don't miss our Annual Body Boat Blade End-of-the season sale - October 31-November 10 - there will be great savings storewide! We will wrap up the month with our annual Pumpkin Paddle!
November will bring some speaking engagements at the Washington Water Trails Association Annual Meeting November 1-2 and the WAKE club in Bellingham November 18. Come join us!
December we will announce a Holiday Sale and be busy planning the schedule for 2015!
Leon is getting his "cape" sewn back on!
As you probably have heard through the kayak rumor mill Leon was not on the water from about June 15th to the present date - except for 3 days surfing at Skookumchuk Rapids in B.C. of all places!
In June he was airlifted to the hospital out of our San Juan Currents course as he was struck in the kidney area with the bow of a student's boat. The paramedics on scene were worried about internal injuries. Turns out he was only bruised, however it was a great lesson in incident management for the entire class.
In mid-September he had spinal surgery on his lower back for an on-going spinal condition. He jokes that he has more metal in his body than most kitchen appliances! Fortunately the surgeon (thanks Doctor Baker you are amazing!) did not have to do a fusion (remember 7 years ago when Leon had his neck fused!). With the "brick" lifted from his nerves, Leon is feeling a lot better and is looking forward to being back on the water by next season!
Only 4 days ago he was airlifted again this time with what turned out to be kidney stone. This was incredible pain to have witnessed but we are relieved that he is healing quickly!
After two airlifts and a lot of time resting, reflecting, and reading he is feeling good and getting better everyday!