fall sunset paddles!

Greetings all … I think this is my last “blog” of the season, and probably my last paddle in Ithaca!  For this year, anyway.  The club is going to go full force through September and as far into October as the Ithaca weather (and ambitious paddling spirit) allows, but I’m leaving Ithaca for a bit … thankfully ending my season on a wonderful night of paddling in A’no:wara.  My next time in an outrigger should be in Santa Barbara, which will be a totally different experience … yikes, actual ocean swells!  I hope my training with Cayuga Outrigger serves me well!

We have had very motivating and encouraging novice practices these past few weeks with students from Cornell engaged with the Concrete Canoe team (more details coming up in April when they actually get to host the regional races!!) and with some other students who spent time in Hawaii this past year, working on fixing canoes, but not actually paddling in them!  Lots of fresh faces and great attitudes.  We have really covered a lot of distance with them, thanks also to the fantastic coaching of Terry.  Note that novice practices WILL CONTINUE for a few more weeks, most likely still on Monday nights, so continue to email me at blair.johnson@gmail.com if you are interested … I’ll keep coordinating even when I’m gone.

Tonight’s club practice was simply a perfect crew also.  Barbara, Virginia, and I came out, and we also had three fabulous repeat novices.  I wish these guys weren’t graduating — they have so much energy and focus, I would love to keep training with them to see where they will go!  They all seem to have fallen in love with the sport, so wherever they do end up, I sure hope that they find (or start) a club.  We had wind and small but steady waves.  Great communication, fantastic questions, consistency, strength … I loved it.  I can’t thank them enough for such a beautiful and “peaceful” night … even while we worked our butts off to keep the boat rolling, it is such a wonderful experience to paddle together with a fun and unified crew.  And take in some nice sunset views when we can steal a second to peek our heads out of the boat!

Thanks, all, for a great season.  Enjoy the last couple months before the lake freezes over … no better way to enjoy fall in Ithaca.