Tracking your paddling trips.

How many of you keep a log of how many miles you paddle each year? I keep a log and track distance and time with my gps. I also log my average moving speed. Last year was my first year paddling and logged just over 50 miles and this year I’ll probably double that number before the season is over. I never thought I would have paddled as much since buying my Jetski but I promised my self that I wouldn’t abandon my other passions. I just made some minor adjustments in my schedule to allow myself the time to do it all.

"since buying my Jetski "???
you actually have the nerve to tell us this?


where’s my gun?


actually I keep a log of ALL my paddling experiences. as a professional it’s a good idea to have documentation.


I’m up to 20 DIFFERENT rivers and lakes and over 300 miles logged so far this year. I also note who I paddled with, wildlife spotted (other than the group members), and anything fun or unusual that happened on the river or in camp.

River Goddess

If you don’t already have a good journal to log this information you might check out the Paddling Journal here in the store:


Distance Yes
I don’t keep track of my average cumulative speed. I think GPS makers should provide several different odometers. An odometer for the kayak. One for the car. Etc.

I keep track
I keep GPS tracks of each paddle that I do. Last year I paddled over 1000 miles – it looks as though I’ll easily beat that this year. As a matter of fact, I’m on my way out the door in a couple of hours for a five day trip.

I also document each trip with photographs. At the last count, I’ve got over 100 Gigabytes of pictures.

I find it interesting to go back and review previous trips. A lot of my paddling experiences are on my website in the location gallery.



– Last Updated: Sep-01-05 4:51 PM EST –

A log is automatically updated in the back of my brain that records how much fun I've had. The resulting fun log entry is then reduced by a negative (angst) entry each day that I am not paddling, playing judo, or biking (i.e fun entries). If a week goes by with no fun entries, the sum of the log becomes zero or negative and self medication becomes necessary.

I played judo last night, so my log is positive right now, however, I will be working late tonight which will cause an abnormally large angst entry.

:) Lou

I started my first river log in l982, and have been faithfully recording trips(On my 3rd large notebook) ever since.

My one regret; I didn’t start it in l962.

I make note of:

Dates of the trip

River paddled

Distance covered

Paddling companions

Boats used

Unusual encounters with wildlife

High & low temperatures/unusual weather conditions

River level


Any classes attended

Misc. trivia

Fun to go back & do a little reading; where you were, what you were paddling, and who you were paddling with 10, 15 or 20 years ago.

we keep a camping/paddling journal
and I made a woodburn outline of MI to mark the lakes and river areas we have paddled. As for mileage, no idea. Too hard to figure anyway with all the twists, turns ect. I could use my GPS, but don’t really care mileage, just the view along the way and the experiences.

Map Journal
Other than paddles down to the local marina and back (can you spell BEER BREAK) I record all paddles on my GPS. At the end of the day I download the track/route to my mapping program and paste the map to MS Word where I include the usual data:

a. Start/stop times.

b. Total distance and length of each leg.

c. Weather. Sky, temperature, wind, etc.

d. Name of fellow paddlers.

e. Narrative of the trip including significant events as well the stop and restart times of each leg.

Afterwards I print a copy for my 3-ring binder and e-mail the completed map to the day’s participants.

I guess in any given week I paddle around 35-40 miles total (including beer runs).



Training book.
I record hours on the water along with anything unusual that might happen. Which boat/paddle I used, conditions & how I felt. Today, I missed a floating body, by only minutes!

I just dump my GPS into my PC to save tracks, mileage, etc…but sometimes I forget to turn it off when I get back to the truck and it throws off my paddlin max speed,average,time,etc.

I don’t add it up for a yearly mileage report, but I probably get 5-15 miles a week in every week. It should be way more, but I am focusing on

bracing/skulling/rolling before it gets cold.

(like that ever happens in TX)

Jet skis
have saved many a life. Superbly versatile rescue craft, and new 4 strokes are more efficient than about anything fuel powered on the water! In terms of distance travelled per unit of fuel.

Is it bad to like jet skis? If we paddle, must we adopt the very predictable prjudices?

I enjoy power boating, sailing, and paddling.