Is sea kayaking difficult?
In reading the latest issue of Ocean Paddler, I read the article/interview by expeditioner/philosopher- Jon Turk. I really like Jon Turk. To date he has been one of my favorite guest speakers at WMCKA. His Logic vs. Magic video from the Raven’s Gift book really struck a chord with me. It is an interesting paradigm, and one that appeals to my more poetic impulses. As someone who is primarily engaged in technology, data, and logic, I wholeheartedly believe in Jon’s assessment of modern existence. We have choices every day between logic, and dreams. And dreams, fantasy, and magic in nature are more prevalent than we choose to believe because of our focus on pragmatism. For me it is a balance between the two.
Jon’s interviewed covered a lot of ground from his expedition experience. He has more miles under his kayak seat than I ever will. He has also pursued those miles in regions of the earth most people would never dare to pursue, Northwest Passage, Kamchatcka, Japan, Patagonia and more. Jon is also a very talented and athletic telemark skier, and backcountry alpine skier who spends a lot of his time choosing new routes on pristine slopes in the American Rockies. He has also done some bike touring in Mongolia.
The reason why this is interesting is in issue 26 of Ocean Paddler magazine, the interview asked Jon why two thirds of his expedition team had little to no sea kayak expedition experience. His response was, “I don’t want to burst anyone’s bubble, but sea kayaking isn’t technically that difficult.”
Based on Jon’s experience with expeditions, climbing, skiing, etc, I can perhaps see where Jon is coming from. Do I completely agree, not sure. Certainly sailing is way more technical and requires years and years of training and practice, rock climbing and alpine climbing are definitely very technical. But is sea kayaking just not that technically difficult?
Certainly surfing has been a big challenge from a skill basis, I could probably spend the rest of my life doing it and not be happy with my performance. Sea Kayaking I feel has a skill and an endurance facet to it that I find really engaging and based on this I have never grown bored of it.
What does the peanut gallery think?