Saturday, July 19, 2014

Urban Oasis and the Outdoor Project.


First day in the States and we ended up on a new adventure. Pulling up at Montlake park in Seattle Tara and I meet Tyson and Tyler who are part of the Out Project, and online adventure guide website. OP and TRAK had paired to promote Sea Kayaking on the site and the benefit of using TRAK kayaks for Urban adventures or more wild ones.

Today was about me making sure they were comfortable with the boats, and also to discuss how I could help them create the content they needed for the website, and along the way that meant we ended up on an Urban Kayak adventure at the same time. All four of us put on the water and paddled around the corner to a crazy little place called the arboretum, a place where idyllic Lillie pads and ducks swam about on the glassy serene waters, while busy freeways ran over top, held above the water by concrete stilts.

The place was a contradiction to the senses and extremely surreal, you eyes computed to your brain, tranquil japans garden style lake, yet your ears at some places where screaming you’re in the middle of a freeway junction, and over all you felt like you where in a part of a city that was being taken back by the wild. Tara could not handle the conflict and paddle back to the park, while the boys and I explored a bit more. I was totally fascinated by the whole situation, so bizarre yet so great for those who cannot escape the city easily to find wild beauty. It almost seemed an “ideal” situation to me... Tara scoffed at this suggestion though what I mean is “ if you are going to have a city, this is a great way to incorporate nature in to it, if we could do this to 90% of each city... we would be a huge leap further ahead towards living in tune with nature”.


It also became apparent there were some reasonably challenging waters to deal with in the urban waterways of seattle.. as we paddled through a canal between lakes, the boats where big and did not slow for kayaks, rapidly the water went from calm, to boat wake swell and rapidly shifted again to a confused sea state as waves refracted of the walls and merged with the swell making some solid calapotiss waves, your average beginner paddler could struggle with these conditions for sure.


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