Tag: valley surf kayaks

New Valley Surf Kayak website launches

New Valley Surf Kayak website launches

Kubrick was famous for being a perfectionist. He spent years making his films, made nervous wrecks of his actors and support staff. But, in the end the result was nothing less than pure genius. Watch this video of Stanley negotiating with his British film crew over tea breaks. I half imagine, Valley’s head man Peter Orton sitting in a director chair, beret slightly askew on his forehead, looking at a 24″ monitor of Valley Surf Kayak website in progress. He smokes a cigarette, and then with pure disdain says, “not good enough”, then exhales smoke noisily as he walks away in disgust.

Roll the clock forward two years (+/-) ~ and the New Valley Surf Kayak website is now live. Bask in its awesomeness. Revel in the glory that it is, and never forget what it took to make it.

And then watch this video. Seriously though Valley and Peter, great job on the website, and on the lineup of great surf kayaks, hope to see even more on the water!

Valley Sponsors World Surf Kayaking Championships 2011

Valley Sponsors World Surf Kayaking Championships 2011

Valley Surf Kayaks Logo

For those that did not hear, Valley Surf Kayaks has sponsored the world surf kayak championships for 2011. While that news is awesome in and of itself, the coolest part is the news that Valley is sponsoring individual entries into the championship tournament.

The rules for entry are as follows, you must be a member of your country’s surf kayak association, and you don’t have to be a member of your country’s team.

I can almost hear the Karate Kid music in the background for you young/old contenders that did not make it to team tryouts to head down to the Outerbanks in North Carolina this fall, and tear it up on the waves so those guys in skull masks don’t beat you up anymore.

New Valley Surf Kayak Design – IC Nemesis

New Valley Surf Kayak Design – IC Nemesis

Valley Surf Kayak IC Nemesis

Side view Valley Nemesis Surf Kayak
Valley Surf Kayak Nemesis via Rob Avery

The new valley surf kayak has been announced, the Valley Nemesis. Valley has been whispering about creating an IC Boat for some time. I heard through Valley’s US West Coast Rep Rob Avery’s Facebook wall of all places! It looks like a really hot IC boat. If you haven’t friended Rob on Facebook yet, he’s been a steady stream of news from Valley over the last few months. Though Peter Orton has also been posting news on Paddling.net for sea kayaks. I would love to link to the new product page on Valley’s Surf Kayaking website, but alas, it is still down.

I honestly don’t want to pick on Valley, but I would love to see the new website up, they’ve got a redesigned Rush and a new IC boat!

This could be a great contender for the Mega Bullitt, and some of the new Watertech IC boats, though with a finbox option it could be a really hot choice for us Great Lakes surfers looking for a big wave gun for very windy steep days.

If you’re not even sure what an IC boat is… Check out the Go Kayak Now surf kayak basics page.

Valley Sea Kayak Web site Relaunches

Valley Sea Kayak Web site Relaunches

Valley Sea Kayak Web site relaunch screen capture
Valley Sea Kayak redesign

The Valley Sea Kayak Web site has finally relaunched. Peter Orton of VCP has made a few comments on paddling message boards where fans of the venerable, but always relevant brand have been anxiously awaiting the return of the Web site.

In this age of connectivity, real time search, Twitter and Facebook, it is hard to have any sort of a technology problem and not have somebody call you out on it, despite the fact that Valley doesn’t make Web sites, they make kayaks. I may have made a joke or two at their expense based on the goofy countdown. But I am glad Peter and company are making boats.

I am still anxiously awaiting the return of ValleySurfKayaks.net.

Still disappointed that there are no flaming spinning monkey heads on the site though, all that time, and no monkey heads…

ACA Surf Kayak Committee Announces IDW for Nov 2009

ACA Surf Kayak Committee Announces IDW for Nov 2009

Surf Kayak ACA Instructor Certification

When I was in Santa Cruz last year, Valley Surf Paddler Sean Morely was undertaking the ACA Surf ICW. It seems that the ACA has created a blog for the Surf Committee. Once I caught wind of my impending visit to the Virginia Beach area I started inquiring about the possibility of doing a Surf ICW.

Michigan native Scott Fairty has already undertaken this ICW and wrote a great post about his experience.

I am thinking of making the trip down to Virginia Beach for the Surf Event this fall, though it would be terrifically convenient if I could squeeze it in this spring when I am in Virginia Beach. We all know that won’t happen.

What is apparent and terrifically convenient is that the ACA is beginning to take Surf Kayaking seriously. I am not one to think that an ACA ICW/IDW…what have you will be a panacea for what ails the paddling word. But it is a signpost on the road that goes in the right direction for surf paddling. This is good for two main reasons.

Accessibility of Surf Specific Equipment

One thing that will continue to plague the development of Surf Kayaking in the US is access to surf specific kayaks. Until this changes there will be a lot of white water boats and sea kayaks being used for surfing. In reality this is a good way to begin, because it gets people in the surf zone and developing skills across disciplines. But in the long run, it short changes the development of really good surf skills. A white water boat really does not surf or carve at all like a surf kayak. They lack sufficient hull speed and are thrown into the white water or pearl out and nose dive on steep take offs. The paddler never really gets the feel for surf specific maneuvers and cannot really surf. Sea kayaks are almost worse in that they can surf anything. But they surf it with complete reckless abandon. They will bongo slide three foot surf anywhere taking out swimmers and boardies like Conan the Barbarian.

Surf kayaking is sort of a new sport. It had a brief run in the late 70s and early 80s and then some dark days. And then it was slowly reborn back into popularity. There are few good surf kayak manufacturers. Valley has launched their surf kayak line with great success. Riot is now stepping into the ring. And there are a few low key west coast providers such as Dick Wold and Vince Shay’s designs at Murky Waters. Also there is the enigma of Mega Surf Kayaks who make a great product, but seem to be unable to land a distributor for their kayaks in the US. Malcolm (bless his heart) I believe has tried but with little success to find the proverbial Great River Outfitters to be his business partner in the US. However unlike Valley and GRO, there is no mass appeal for a sport that holds its greatest lure among those who believe that being cold, wet, and terrified is a good lifestyle choice, (this website is clearly advocating this as a good way to go!). So unless you live either right next to a Valley dealer, or in Northern California, there are few surf specific kayak choices available now. I am hoping Valley and Riot will change all of that. And Riot in particular seems to be making all of the right moves with the launch of their new surf kayak line.

Surf Training & Advocacy

Without those who know the skills to help those who don’t there won’t be new surf paddlers. My first indoctrination into surf specific kayaking was buying a Riot Boogie after hearing about it from a guy on paddling.net. To this date, I know of one other Great Lakes Kayak Surfer. And by this I mean, a guy with a surf kayak that will go out when it is rough out. One other guy in the whole of my west coast. I’ve been trying to get people to try it for almost 4 years now. No takers, except this one guy (Joe Deja). When I went to the west coast, I found I performed adequately, not terrific, but adequately. I managed to catch and ride waves in a surf kayak without shaming myself. But I have to believe that this pursuit of mine could be shared by others.

The complaint that surf paddlers frequently have is based on being treated unfairly, if not with outright hostility in prime surf spots shared with stand up board surfers. And this is mainly due to surf paddlers, who surf like either white water kayakers, or sea kayakers, or nowhere in between. As one of the ACA’s mission statements and goals is to increase advocacy and access for paddlers, this new training and assessment would seem to be a great way to get the message out to paddlers. And this would be especially so for paddlers who frequent areas where multiple use breaks (Stand up surfers and kayak surfers) are prevalent.

I believe that the ACA ICW and ICE could potentially be way to start course correcting on these two issues. If the ACA will teach the rules of the road that surfers are using to paddlers this may go a long way to steering paddlesports back into union with the board surfing community. And if there are more people taking the surf kayaking discipline as an instruction path, then more people may potentially hear about it, and it won’t be me and two other guys in Michigan!

So watch the Surf Committe Blog for when the Surf IDW is finalized. If you are from the Midwest and want to make the trip let me know. I had an e-mail exchange with Ben Lawry who is now the ITE so I may have to make it a date.