When Kim & I were in Seattle in June, we met Nigel & Kristin’s friends Claudia & Russell. All six of the aforementioned could be described as certifiably crazy to some extent, but I think, right at this moment, Russell takes the podium.
To see what I mean, keep an eye on the trip-site http://devon.irvacationtohell.com/ over the coming weeks.
There are not many people daft enough to paddle in the Arctic Circle where the sea at the get-in is currently still frozen, let alone a 60-mile open sea crossing, then portage their kayaks & gear across a frozen island for a week before paddling some more, including either another 40 mile open crossing or a 100-mile detour. And all in a generally northerly direction. The trip is expected to take six weeks out of an Arctic summer window of only 8-10 weeks.
See the madman & one of his compadriates talking about the trip at http://www.immersionresearch.com/2008/03/21/interviews-with-the-sweetwater-crew/#more-114
If you still need persuading, further evidence, (along with the entry for next year’s competition if you’re completely crazy too), at http://www.irvacationtohell.com/
Kim & I dashed out to Seattle the week before last to Surprise my brother Nigel and more particularly Kristin, who was 50. Raaaa raaaa!
Our very good friends Carolyn & Scott had agreed to put up with us for the week and really were the perfect hosts, to such an extent that they invited Kristin & Nigel and their two house guests Claudia & Russell (who runs Sweetwater Kayaks in Florida) to dinner. SURPRISE!
It was just great being in Seattle again where the folk are so friendly and the scenery so magnificent. Look one way up N&K’s street to see Mount Rainier & the Cascades and the other way to see the Olympic Mountains.
I can’t begin to do the trip justice in full here, but the highlights included the Sebring convertible hire car (thankyou Amex!), buying & preparing salad with Scott (a story in itself), the surprise dinner (food and company), the brilliant party (though I’m really sorry to all those folk whose names I forgot or mixed up… not my memory’s finest hour!), the waterfalls in the Cascades, paddling the Whisky 16 (Nigel’s latest kayak design) with Nigel & Russell, playing (a lot of) guitar with Russell, Nigel and John Marshall, burgers in the 74th Street Ale House, grown up food at Ray’s Boathouse, seeing the Kri-Kri studio again, the Olympic Sculpture Park at the Seattle Art Museum (SAM), being re-aquainted with Alice & Richard’s amazing contemporary art collection, and the upgrade to flat-bed class on the return flight (thankyou NWA, whose Economy Class has way more room than the equivalent BA Cattle Class anyway!).
All in all, a fantastic trip, with special thanks again to Carolyn & Scott who made it all possible!