We are pleased to announce Reverend Bonnie Perry as one of our 2013 guest coaches for the Gales Storm Gathering. I (KEITH) have been privileged to work with Bonnie for almost 12 years through the West Michigan Coastal Kayaking Association Memorial Day Weekend Symposium. Bonnie brings a wealth of experience not only of the Great Lakes where she has done many expeditions, but also experience from her many trips to the coasts of England, Cornwall, Scotland, and Wales during her pursuit of the BCU 5 Star Sea Leader award. Bonnie is one of the few women in the world to earn this prestigious award, and even fewer in the USA.
There is nothing Bonnie loves more than coaching and guiding sea kayaking in the wilderness. In addition to being a 5 * sea leader, she is a Level 3 Sea Coach, a 3 Star Assessor, a 3 star canoe paddler and a UKCC Level 1 Coach. In the American Canoe Association (ACA) Bonnie is a Level 4 Instructor Trainer and in Paddle Canada she is currently a Level 2 Instructor. Bonnie is comfortable paddling and teaching with both the Euro and Traditional Blades. In addition to teaching in the US and Canada Bonnie has taught with Jeff Allen at Sea Kayaking Cornwall, England and interned with Gordon Brown at Skyak Adventures in Scotland. Bonnie is a Wilderness First Responder and when she isn’t in a boat playing, paddling or coaching she is the Senior Pastor/Rector at All Saints’ Episcopal Church in Chicago. www.allsaintschicago.org.
We look forward to seeing Bonnie in Oct.
As you may have noticed we updated our website, and our facebook creative. Based on the name “the Gales” and the events long and storied past, we wanted to create an image that said “fun”, not, “look out this is dangerous”. James as an animator and illustrator is all about fun. He delivered on that message. The event also delivered on that message. Our first two years have been lumpy water fun.
For 2013 we wanted to take advantage of some of the beautiful photography taken in Wawa Ontario 2012 while we were at Naturally Superior Adventures. We hunted through all of our shared images and chose a couple of standouts. Callum Gray one of our participants from Ann Arbor Michigan took a couple of amazing photos we were super excited about. It didn’t hurt that Callum had the key element, of light, dynamism, and most of all composition.
The image represented on our website and on our Facebook timeline represented the new direction for us. Keith Wikle’s Art Director friend from Agency Biggs-Gilmore Bryn Boulter (ironically from Wales) kindly offered his services and worked with the Gales staff to design our new logo as well. We were hoping for clean, simple, and iconic. And we feel he nailed it.
Big thanks to Callum for offering his photographic talent to us, and to Bryn for his work on our new look.
We will have some full size banners at Canoecopeia where we will have a booth for 2013 registration.
We were fortunate enough to have an amazing write up from Ginny Marshall of Adventure Kayak Magazine on the Gales called Face Your Freshwater Fears. Keith Wikle did a short phone interview with Ginny after the symposium. Ginny was obviously on hand to participate as well.
The article which is now in print and online versions of Spring 2013. We are very proud of this piece and feel that it nicely sums the experience for participants, though it sounds like Susan got more than she bargained for when she signed up!
The article nicely outlines our event as a kayak training event for paddlers looking to advance beyond a beginner flat water symposium. We were very pleased with the results from 2012 in Wawa, and it demonstrated the value of the idea to the region and beyond.
We are super excited about 2013 in the Apostle Islands, which Ginny thankfully plugged for us! We have a ton in store for this year and look forward to seeing you there. Thanks again to Adventure Kayak Magazine for their continued coverage and support of the event and our efforts!
We are very pleased to announce our second guest coach and keynote speaker for 2013, John Carmody. John is one of a prestigious few who have earned the BCU’s Level 5 (top) sea kayak coaching award. John is also an Advanced Open Water Instructor and Level 4 Surf Coach.
John has been paddling for over twenty years in Maine and the Northeast, as well as the UK and Ireland. John brings a wealth of experience of open ocean experience as well as his focus on surfing and sea kayaking. John is a sponsored P&H paddler as well as a team Werner paddler. We are very excited about this year’s guest coaches and look forward to working with them on the water. We’ve been fortunate in our friends, and we hope to continue that being fortunate with Mr. Carmody.
You can also see John has all of his fingers which is a great sign for any qualified kayaking coach.
With all of the new stuff in 2013, the Gales Storm Gathering is announcing our new Sponsor, Summit Sports. With the help of General Manager Trey Rouss and Scott Fairty who is now the paddlesports educational director at Summit, we are in the trenches planning the 2013 Gales Storm Gathering in the Apostle Islands.
Summit Sports has been on the scene since 1990, with three different locations servicing the outdoor community in Michigan.
With this announcement comes a grateful and heartfelt thanks to Ryan Rushton of Geneva Kayak Center, who continues to support the event with his leadership on and off the water as one of our 2013 guest coaches.
We look forward to everything 2013 has to bring for the Gales. We look forward to seeing you in the Apostle Islands Oct 11-13th.
Our first announcement of 2013 is to announce our 2013 dates. Although they have unofficially been announced on the site, we wanted to get our formal announcement up.
The Gales Storm Gathering is going to the Apostle Islands of Wisconsin in 2013. After our fantastic year in Wawa, we weren’t quite sure how to top the beauty, the power, and the great participants. We want to ensure we surpass each year with a great venue, great coaches, and more time spent on the water enjoying the power of Lake Superior. With this theme, we are really excited about announcing that the Gales will be held in the Apostle Islands, Oct 11-13th 2013.
The Apostle Islands have long served as treasured expedition destination for sea kayakers. We will be posting about it’s varied and many splendoured treasures as the weeks progress. But suffice it to say for now, it offers some of the best training ground on Lake Superior for our particular brand of sea kayaking.
There was high demand for Gales wear this year in Wawa, we had tee-shirts and hoodies, but we ran out. Now available for re-order, the Gales custom hoody, tee, and a limited run of Shawna’s awesome linoleum print.
One of the many reasons we chose to bring the Gales to Wawa and Naturally Superior was the amazing Rock Harbor Lodge. While we have waxed poetic ad nausea about the fine paddling destination that is the Lake Superior at the river mouth of the Michipicoten, this post is about a “really important” subject – food.
As you can see in the image, the folks at Naturally Superior have it all together. From a great meeting spot for our evening Shakedown to a House Concert on Friday night to the amazing setting in Wawa – this may be our finest Gales locale. I have just received the menu for the event from David and will look forward to the fine food these folks are putting together.
Here you go, the menu for the weekend!
In your pre-event email (for everyone who has registered for the Gales and Coaches Week), you will receive a on-line fillable form where you can choose to have the meal packages, as well as choose t-shirt size. For more information on the pricing for meal packages, see this page under Event Information:
We are super excited to have a custom Shawna Franklin design for our Gales t-shirt! This year’s design really captures the spirit of the event. On the back of the t-shirt will read:
“I need the sea because it teaches me” Pablo Neruda
Want one? Come to the event and you get one as part of your registration.
Sea Kayak Essentials Vol1 from Kayak Essentials on Vimeo.
We are stoked to have Nick Cunliffe of the UK as a featured coach for the BCU Coach 1 and Gales Events! If you don’t know of him already, Nick is a L5 Whitewater and Sea Coach (read full bio here). for the BCU. That’s top shelf, for sure. It is exciting to bring in this kind of talent to the Great Lakes Region. Combine this level of coaching with our sweet venue and we have a great opportunity for learning and improvement. Check out the Vimeo link to Nick’s Sea Kayak Essentials (Vol. 1) DVD and then join us for some time with Nick!!!