OUTDOORS: Paddle sports festival coming soon

By Michael Carman
Peninsula Daily News

IF KAYAYKING OR stand-up paddleboarding is something you’ve always wanted to try but haven’t known where to begin, next weekend’s Port Angeles Kayak and Film Festival will provide ample learning opportunities.

Nine experts specializing in all genres of kayaking and paddleboarding will gather in Port Angeles and surrounding areas Saturday and Sunday, April 12-13, to offer two days of on-the-water instruction at the inaugural festival.

Designed for novice to expert level paddlers, classes ranging from introductory sea kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding to Eskimo rolling, learning to read tides and currents, debacle deterrent and more will be offered at Hollywood Beach, Feiro Marine Life Center, Crescent Beach and Freshwater Bay, next Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and next Sunday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Kayak test drive

Attendees can try out all sorts of kayak makes and models, ranging from stable recreational style to fast expedition types and sit-on-top and sit inside varieties.

Feel free to pick them up, test their weight, check out the quality of construction and learn about all the different designs and materials

Special pricing will be available for those looking to purchase a new kayak.

Outdoor film festival

To satisfy the second part of the event title, an outdoor film festival featuring adventure kayaking expeditions in scenic locations around the world is set for the Gateway Transit Center’s covered pavilion, at the corner of Front and Lincoln streets in downtown Port Angeles, from 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. next Saturday.

Selected films include “Bhutan: The Last Shangri-La,” the “Of Souls+Water” series, “Wildwater” and “Mountain Mind Collective,” which was filmed on the North Olympic Peninsula.

Next Door Gastropub will serve street tacos along with beer and wine during the film festival.

Keynote speaker

Adventure kayaker and Port Angeles resident Chris Duff will discuss his many expeditions in an evening of photos and stories at the Port Angeles Red Lion Hotel, 221 N. Lincoln St., from 7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. next Saturday.

Duff’s adventures include an 8,000-mile solo trip around the eastern third of the U.S. and Canada, as well as solo circumnavigation of Ireland and New Zealand.

In 1986 he became the first person to sea kayak around Great Britain alone.

Duff is the author of two books, On Celtic Tides, an account of his Ireland trip which won the National Outdoor Book Award for 2001, and Southern Exposure, a chronicle of his New Zealand journey, which won the National Outdoor Book Award, the Benjamin Franklin Award and the Banff Mountain Book Festival Grand Prize.

A no-host bar will be available during the presentation.

An all-inclusive pass, good for an unlimited number of classes and entry to the film festival, keynote presentation and demo beach, is $100.

There are also a la carte class options and $10 entry for the film festival/keynote presentation: the skills and obstacle race and the kayak demo beach (refundable with kayak purchase), respectively.

Event registration is available at www.portangeleskayakandfilm.com, by phoning 360-417-3015, and at the festival check-in tent.

Those interested can also register at the festival’s welcome party at Barhop Brewery & Taproom, 124 W. Railroad Ave. in Port Angeles, starting at 7 p.m. next Friday.

Live music is planned.

The festival is sponsored by Adventures Through Kayaking, Sound Bikes & Kayaks, and Olympic Raft & Kayak.

Olympic Bird Festival

I moved to Port Angeles from Port Townsend back in December and the prior tenant of my house left some gifts in the garden: bird and hummingbird feeders.

After some advice, I made my own nectar and soon started seeing Anna’s hummingbirds.

Quick trips to Swain’s General Store and the Leitz Farm store for bird seed and suet blocks have paid off for the black-capped chickadees, house finches, a variety of wrens and sparrows and the two loud and obnoxious stellar’s jays residing in the thicket near my front porch.

Why do I mention this sudden interest in songbirds?

The Olympic Peninsula Audubon Society will present its 11th annual Olympic Bird Festival celebrating song, shore and sea birds from Friday through Sunday.

PDN Features Editor Diane Urbani de la Paz wrote about the bird festival in Sunday’s edition, so I won’t go into great detail.

You can read the sidebar story here at
tinyurl.com/PDN-Birdfest.

Many field trips have already sold out but as of noon Wednesday, field trips to the Dungeness Spit, Dungeness Bay and Three Crabs area and a Dawn Chorus trip were still accepting birders.

More information on the festival is available at www.olympicbirdfest.org.

Proceeds from the event support the activities of the Dungeness River Audubon Center.

Festival partners include the Olympic Peninsula Audubon Society, the Jamestown S’Klallam tribe and the River Center.

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Outdoors columnist Michael Carman appears here Thursdays and Fridays. He can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5152 or at mcarman@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: April 02. 2014 6:07PM
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