Tippy Canoe? No Problem! Here Are Two Rules to Keep You Dry

It’s said that the first step in any new venture is the hardest. That’s a debatable point, but some would-be canoeists still find the idea of stepping into a boat that’s no wider than a La-Z-Boy, one that rocks back and forth in the smallest ripples, more than a little off-putting. Luckily, though, there’s a formula that will enable even the rawest novice to make the transition from dry land to canoe seat without swimming. It’s contained in two easy-to-follow rules, and if you give Tamia three minutes of your time, she’ll put you in the picture.

by Tamia Nelson | April 3, 2018

Paddling Article on Tamiasoutside.com

A canoe isn’t a party barge, a floating platform you can board with no more thought than you’d step out onto your deck at home. It is, in truth, a rather tippy little craft—as anyone who spends a day watching the traffic at a busy put-in will soon learn. A surprising number of first-time canoeists go for an unplanned dip before they even pick up a paddle.

You say it’s never happened to you? Well, don’t start feeling smug. Modesty is never out of place, and old hands not infrequently find themselves swimming when they least expect it. It just takes one hasty step between dock and boat, a sudden lunge to retrieve a drifting hat, or a poorly timed change of position, and—Splash!—you’re in the water. That said, it’s not inevitable. Follow two simple rules, and you’ll never go for an unplanned swim … Continue reading this article…

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For half a century, Tamia Nelson has been ranging far and wide by bike, boat, and on foot. A geologist by training, an artist since she could hold a pencil, a photographer since her uncle gave her a twin-lens reflex camera when she was 10, she's made her living as a writer and novelist for two decades. Avocationally her interests span natural history, social history, cooking, art, and self-powered outdoor pursuits, and she has broad experience in mountaineering, canoeing, kayaking, cycling, snowshoeing and skiing.