Canoeing On Blair's Valley Lake, Maryland, USA.
Canoeing is a cooperative effort. It takes the strength of the person in front and the intelligence of the person steering in the rear to successfully manoever a canoe to its destination. That is why the interdisciplinary team wanted to include canoeing as one of its activities on the Blair's Valley field trip.
Mr. Cassutto successfully navigates Blair's
Valley Lake with Donna W. at the stern
(or is it bow?)
Students were given lessons in basic canoeing by Mr. Larry Hayes of the Fairview Outdoor Education Center. His sense of humor and easy-going demeanor helped the students feel relaxed and willing to accept his "challenge by choice." Mr. Hayes helped us "buddy up" with someone who was a little more experienced in canoeing. Then he gave us some tips on how to insure a safe and successful conoe trip around the lake. Among them:
- One person should brace the canoe while the other gets in.
- When moving around in the canoe, keep one's weight low in the craft to avoid capsizing.
- Communication is the key. The person in the back lets the person in front which side he or she is paddling on. The person in front stays on the opposite side.
- The person in back should use the J-stroke: placing a slight twist at the end of a stroke, to compensate for the canoe's tendency to go off course.
- Keep one's life jacket tight and on at all times.
- If one does go "into the drink," stay with the craft. It will float and it is easier for the resuers to see the person or people in trouble.
These tips helped keep us all safe. Not one of our group capsized. We all learned alot about how to work together as a team, and we earned a sense of self-confidence and accomplishment when all was said and done. Thanks Mr. Hayes for your great instruction!
Here are some starting points to locate other internet links on canoeing.
- Eddyline echo - source of canoe and kayak information, worldwide paddlers and clubs directory, coaching articles.
- The Swedish Canoe Page A wonderful resource for worldwide links on all watersports!
The Virtual Field Trip Main Page