Trip planning, what are you favorites?

The San Juan Islands, WA were one of the most interesting places to paddle. There are lots of tidal rips and standing waves. You need a tide table and it is like playing chess with Mother Nature. The currents are frequently stronger than you can paddle against. Cold water and plenty of rain, but really beautiful and you can paddle with seals and salmon.

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I thought Lake Garda looked like a good place to paddle so maybe we will take the kayaks and return.The thing I liked was it wasn’t too crowded and it seemed fairly protected in this cove. Lots of good little quaint hotels and places to eat. Shopping.

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what country?

Italy, northern. I think it might be one of the largest lakes in Europe. Excluding Russia, Scandinavia, Ukraine.

That’s nice. I have been to Europe many times but was disappointed by all of the villages, roads, trams and ski lifts all over their mountains. It is difficult to travel and carry an outfit.

There is a lifetime of paddling opportunities in North America.

Depends on your outfit.
Folding boats are a favorite aspect of my trip planning. Pic below is my rolling bag weighing under 50 pounds packed that contains a 12’ folding kayak, all the gear and clothing I need to paddle including a Malone inflatable roof rack kit for the rental station wagon. Towed this through airports from the US to Europe and back with the rest of my travel clothing and toiletries in a convertible backpack. Paid zero baggage fees.

Besides not having to pay to rent a boat at my destinations, I don’t have to waste time arranging them and have be limited in location and time frame for paddling. My folding boats (current fleet ranges from 24 pound 12’ solo to a 33 pound 15’ 4" convertible solo/tandem sit-on-top). Under current airline regs I’d have to pay a fee to check the packed boats but that is still negligible when weighed against the freedom it gives me in transporting and securing my craft (folded up, any of them fit in a hotel room closet or the boot of a rental car) and, most of all, they allow access to any waterway, lake or coastline in which I wish to drop my paddle whenever I feel like it.

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Different strokes for different folks.


I’d like to have one but the sidekick insists on carryon only, he can be a real :pill:

My parents used to have one (Folbot?) I also noticed they rent something like that at Plansee.

The Adirondacks, of course is the easy answer, where I happen to live.

But for the shear aspects of trip planning, it has got to be the Yukon River for me. Two separate races require different kinds and amounts of planning, the 440 mile Yukon River Quest (YRQ), and the much more adventuresome and planning filled 1000 mile Yukon Y1k. I’ve raced the YRQ 3 times, and the Y1K twice. I much prefer the Y!K for many reasons. Both races, lf course, require a dedicated team, both with the race team (I paddle voyageur and C4 canoes with as many as seven paddlers), as well as your support pit crew. The YRQ allows ground (shore) support from your pit crew, but the Y1K is by the rules to be totally independent of any ground support at all from the time of starting to paddle until crossing the finish line. Which is not to say the ground crew has nothing to do.

Given that proper planning and training for the Y1K takes the better part of a year with readying and organizing yourself, your team, all your gear, food, and transporting all with your canoe 4000 miles from home to the Yukon and return, it is an effort of love.

At least true lately for domestic flights, they are so overbooked that most baggage ends up being checked within the gate tunnel inevitably and never makes it into the overstuffed overhead compartments (unless you are flying first class). So counting on carry-on only is a forlorn hope for us peons anyway.

When I travel I often ship a box of my heavier/bulky stuff on ahead to my destination (like hiking boots, extra clothing) in order to reduce what I have to drag through the transpo gulags. I almost always ship stuff back the same way at the end of the trip. My trips almost always involve a friend who can stash my stuff at the other end.

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I spent my career traveling to distant sites as an environmental consultant. We hauled everything from coolers to packs full of instruments, and sample bottles. Flying now is much more difficult. I want nothing to do with it.

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I was a project manager for installation of some of the fancier automatic conveyor sorting and package handling installations (biggest players in this field are mostly European) and I can forsee a future for modular baggage handling that would greatly expedite the whole process both for the airlines and the passengers. Each passenger pays for one or more standardized empty modules, probably metal or reinforced plastic, in which they stash their packed bags or miscellaneous loose stuff. These then have a scannable code label slapped on them with all the information needed for the system to route each module to the right flight. Each module goes on the conveyor where the scanners shuffle them to the right area where they can be automatically fed tidily into the cargo hold. Process reverses at the destination. This would solve many issues including people sneaking oversized bags and excess bulk onto planes, also eliminate the pilfering of luggage by baggage handlers, which still goes on. And it would lessen the problem of odd-sized luggage getting stuck in conveyors and stalling or breaking them, as has always been an issue. Bags in the modules would be protected from damage (though I roll my eyes at travelers who freak out about their luggage getting scuffed or damaged. Duh, like your shoes, a bag is supposed to protect what is INSIDE from damage. If you have a bag so “valuable” that it can’t be flung onto a cart without you having a hissy fit, get a cheap one at TJ Maxx next time and turn that overpriced Louis Vuitton into a coffee table).

Passengers could also be provided with an electronic key for each of their modules which would assure that they would be the only ones who could retrieve and open them at the flight’s end. None of this is new or rocket science. Automated conveyor systems like Amazon and UPS use, made by companies like Rapistan-Demag have been rapidly and accurately sorting and routing packages of all sizes through laser scanning for over 20 years. And lest the baggage handlers cry about losing their jobs, there would still be plenty of work, just different since the airlines could reassign those crews to expedite the collection points for encapsulating the bags and then assisting passengers at baggage claim in locating and retrieving their bags. Less physical stress and workplace injuries from them if robotic systems are actually juggling the baggage from point to point.

I know flight attendants are increasingly stressed and exasperated by how bad loading, unloading and inflight hassles have become. But it seems to me that they have the collective power to demand some REASONABLE changes in the idiotic and dysfunctional airline policies that have become a moribund habit. In fact they have been complaining lately about how they are not paid until the plane is loaded and ready for takeoff so they should be clamoring for streamlined procedures.

First and foremost, STOP serving alcohol on flights. We have enough drug and alcohol-related behavioral issues in the world, why enable more of this among people trapped 35,000’ in the air for hours? Second, load the freaking planes from the back to the front, not the other way around. Loading time could be cut in half, if not more, and it would reduce conflicts among seat snatchers and bin battles. The damned aisles and even seats are increasingly more cramped, yet you are made to start loading at the front so everybody in successive rows has to stand and wait until the first comers fuss with the overhead bins and getting settled with all their crap in the seats. It is not a “luxury benefit” to the first class passengers to get on first so they spend another 15 minutes to half an hour on the plane while the unwashed masses in coach jostle by them.

And upon landing, passengers should be told to remain in their seats, and the stewards can work their way from front to back having each row in turn rise and collect their bags and exit. Requiring bags to be checked in the modular units would also reduce the crowding and chaos inside the cabin.

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La Verendrye
Woodland Caribou
Green River Utah
Bowron Lakes BC
Yukon River
Algonquin Provincial Park
Pukaskwa National Park
Superior Marine Conservation Area
Gulf of Maine
Lake Superior
Everglades backcountry
Missinaibi River

Dont care for BWCA

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It overlaps Quetico, I believe. In the 50’s through the 70’s I used to canoe what is now called the BWCA. No permits, no people, just us young dummies - no pfd’s, and early on no tents, etc.

They abut but very different countries and management
Visited in 1973 glorious BWCA
again 1988. Couldnt leave fast enough. Overrun
We did go through to get to Quetico to the Falls Chain

This is an apt discussion for me. With a goal of trying to paddle in all 50 states I have yet to paddle in Minnesota. I figure I need to at least paddle a wee bit in BWCA because it is so iconic. Permits and portages aren’t really my thing but I plan to take at least some small nibbles, day trips, or simple overnights. Voyageurs and superior natl. Forest outside BWCA is where I plan to spend the bulk of my time but boundary waters is a favorite for lots and lots of folks.

BWCA in September is great. Bugs are down, water isn’t too cold and crowds are absent. I did a seven day solo in September and saw one other party in the week.


As youngsters way back then we would wander between Minnesota and the Quetico with nary a thought - all the same to us. We didn’t know about going through Customs at the border. I suppose there was some such presence back then. It must be rather different today.

When you make it to Arizona let me know, we’ll paddle w/ you.

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I live in Alaska so I’m biased… No particular order.

Prince William Sound- Chenega to Whittier
Prince William Sound- Columbia Glacier
Kenai Fjords National Park- McCarty Fjord and Nuka Bay
Wood-Tikchik State Park- Lake Kulik to Aleknagik
Arctic National Wildlife Refuge- any of the north flowing rivers
Katmai National Park- Moraine Creek
Russell Fjord Wilderness Area
Green River, UT, both Labyrinth and Stillwater sections