Trip Reports

Stand Up Paddling (SUPing)

SUP Intro Clinic - Witnessed by the Meech Loons 2013

Two friendly frolicking fishing loons and Meech Lake witnessed 8 adults on SUP boards this past week with really loooooong paddles taking to the water on their feet.  Yes, on our feet! Paddling while Standing UP, or simply SUPing.  Our Coach/instructor Jodi Bigelow, had us learning how to carry, assemble, launch and mount our SUP boards, from the tail, and take our first few SUP baby steps. 

Then the fun started, some wanted to progress directly to the expert level in a single lesson and try some pirouettes but forgot to keep an active paddle

(not to mention a modicum of "balance"), result - instant swimming and a good laugh.  Undaunted my cohorts and I learned how to paddle with a beginners stance and the braver ones also tried the more advanced (one foot forward, one foot back) stance.

All the time the loons were swimming underneath us enjoying an abundant supply of fish only surfacing long enough to laugh at us and then submerge again.  I guess they didn't consider us much of a threat at all.  I have never witnessed such a undaunted and friendly pair of loons, and I've seen a few in my time.  Laughing Loons aside I was really impressed by the paddling prowess and progress of all my cohorts (Ryan, Helen, Suca, Phil, Edward and Suzanne) under the watchful eye and encouragement of Coach Jodi.  (thanks Jodi for the loon photo).  Was very enjoyable, lots of fun, so much so that maybe we will have to start checking around for SUP boards at reasonable prices, sometime soon.  If you get the chance give it a try, its novel, fun, different, did I mention fun and is the latest growth area in the vast world of paddling opportunities.

This all started back in the winter at a fund raiser by (and for) the Ottawa River Keepers (Meredith Brown) organization at Archives Canada.   As part of the silent auction to raise funds - Jodi Bigelow (from paddlefit) had generously committed to running an SUP intro clinic and consequently 8 club members bought into the opportunity and in so doing not only got to learn, have fun and try somethiing new but also contributed to a really worthy cause - The Ottawa River Keeper (for more info dial into their website at www.ottawariverkeeper.ca/).  Well done everybody, good effort by all, and thanks for being there and especially for contributing to a worthy cause.