Just wanted to share with you guys that over the weekend I completed Level 1 Paddle Canada certification. It was a gruelling two day course on Lake Ontario that taught us a lot about various things like strokes, edging and a whole host of rescues including buzzare stuff like bow rescue. Completing that particular excersize succesfully was a great anxiety buster.
Also learned a lot about dressing for immersion into 55 degree water and what I personally need to survive that. 3/4 surfing wetsuit with a tight fitting water resistant windbreaker did the trick. At times I didn’t feel like getting out of the water since it was kinda fun
I used my own boat that folks on this forum helped me choose (https://forums.paddling.com/discussion/2936213/sea-kayak-recommendation). Thanks again guys, the help was absolutely tremendous.
Anyway, I highly recommend this course. It sure was a boot camp and passing it was certainly not a given. But it was absolutely 100% worth it.
It’s excellent that you took the initiative to do this. I’ve always been an advocate of education for all outdoor pursuits, kayaking included. You are now more prepared than probably 90% of others you see out on the water!
Don’t stop there though, keep up the learning and practicing.
Consider taking your level 2 in a year or two from now after you have more “seat time”. Make a mini-vacation out of it, as it runs multiple days and there’s a camping/tripping component involved. When I took it, I found not only did I gain more skills but my confidence increased exponentially.
@Sparky961, thank you. It was a great experience and I feel that it put me on a much more solid footing.
Taking level 2 would be terrific if I can swing it with family duties an all.
So far, I get whatever seat time I can get, which is usually one morning a week provided mother nature cooperates, which is not a given at lake Ontario.
It’s always amazing to me that I can learn more in a few hours with a good instructor than in a year of bungling along by myself.
Congratulations! Instruction is something I highly value. I’d much rather learn from someone else’s mistakes rather than my own.
Paddle Canada Sea Kayak Level 3
What do you do to pass level 3? Hope whale hunting is not involved
I don’t know about whale hunting but you can learn to throw a harpoon using a norsaq at Qajaq Training Camp next August : http://www.qajaqtc.com/
The criteria for each level can be found on the Paddle Canada web site.
As an oversimplification, L3 is more focused on group management. L2 ensures you can take care of yourself. I opted not to take L3 because I didn’t see much point.
As Sparky961 said, the criteria are on the Paddle Canada website. But IIRC, there was a large component of “book learning” on the subjects of navigation and weather prediction, and how to practically apply them. Plus you must demonstrate rescues in rough wavy water, both solo and two person assisted.