Friday, January 9, 2015

Let's Make Punch Bowl Falls Park Happen!

Hey friends - If you've ever been to our neck of the woods to paddle, you've likely visited Punch Bowl Falls and have probably also seen a boater or two (present company included) drink a bootie in the name of a swim. Regardless of any carnage it's caused, Punch Bowl Falls is a special place to locals and visitors for it's beauty & recreational opportunities. Please read the letter below from Heather Statan - this is a great opportunity to make a very special stretch of land available to the public for future generations!

photo courtesy of American Whitewater

If you ever go to the area around Punch Bowl Falls near Dee to swim, fish, kayak, hike or just enjoy nature you know what a special place it is. Hood River County is considering acquiring the property as a County Park (check out their website ) But they need to know what the community thinks. They've asked me to help coordinate the public outreach effort  . . . so I'm reaching out to folks like you. Nobody knows the area better than locals--please share your ideas.  Feel free to pass on this email to anyone you think might be interested.

Over the last few years, Western Rivers Conservancy purchased over 100 acres of pristine land along the Hood River to conserve critical habitat and provide public recreation access with the idea that the property would eventually be sold to the County as a public park. It is a magnificent 1.5 mile stretch of river, including Punchbowl Falls and the confluence of the East and West Forks of the Hood River (see site plan or topographic or aerial map of the property). The area has been a favorite swimming hole and fishing spot for generations, it now also sees frequent use by rafters, kayakers and outdoor education programs.
While locals have a long history of treating the area as if it were a public park, it is, in fact private property. If Hood River County is unable to acquire the property, Western Rivers Conservancy may be forced to sell it on the private market. A private sale would include a conservation easement to protect river habitat but it is likely that public access would be eliminated by future owners.
The first step towards creating a public park at Punchbowl Falls is a community visioning process. What kind of recreation opportunities should exist there? What improvements should be made and what should be left alone? How should we protect wildlife habitat?
Let us know what you think: 
  •  Attend the public forum next Tuesday January 13  6-7:30 pm at the County Administration Building, 601 State Street, Hood River. A second forum will be on Feb. 10.
  •  Take this short online survey
  • Volunteer to serve on our Park Advisory Committee 
  • If you know the property well or use it a lot, do a stakeholder interview

If you have questions, or want to join the advisory committee or do an interview, email me or 541-490-5225

Thanks so much.

Heather Staten

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Holiday 2014 Shipping Schedule

It's that time of year for all of you procrastinating Santas that slept in on Black Friday and are just now putting together your Christmas shopping list: who can get you what and when?

We here at the Kayak Shed aim to please, but since we don't have turbo speed reindeer like Santa and are confined to carrier logistics, here is our schedule for December 2014:

Last Days for Free Express Shipping (USPS, 1-4 day ship time):
United States: December 17th
Pacific Northwest (WA, OR, ID): December 19th
Portland, OR: December 22nd

UPS 2 Day: December 22nd

Have any questions? Give us a call! 541.386.4286 or drop us an email.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Kayak Shed Fishing Team Report : Fishing for Sturgeon

When you have one last opportunity to get some sturgeon meat for your freezer, you rally early. My intention was to be at the ramp by 6:30 in the morning and on the water by 7:00, giving me a good 6 to 7 hours to catch my keeper. Well I over slept my alarm, rushed to get my stuff together, and headed into Portland. I finally hit George Rodgers Park in Lake Oswego at about 8:00 and after taking my sweet time getting ready I launched at about 9. In the process of getting ready, I realized that I had an anchor set-up but only enough line for about 20-25 feet of water. Well that doesn’t work too well in 75-80 feet of water. Thankfully the kayak fishing community is a great bunch of folks and I knew that one of them would let me tie up with them, tournament or not.

I started heading up to one of my favorite spots. I passed by one of my fishing buddies and swung over to chat. I came to find out he was in that spot because he had lost his anchor earlier that morning. The current was nearly non-existent where he was fishing and I decided that it wouldn’t be a bad spot to drop a line for a bit. I baited my line with a bit of squid and sent it down. It wasn’t down more than a minute be fore I was getting my first tap tap tap. It’d been a while since I have been sturgeon fishing… I missed the bite. This happened a couple more times. Tap tap tap… I miss the bite. Tap tap tap… I miss the bite. Finally I was thinking that I had forgotten how to catch a fish. Then it happened… tap tap-SET THE HOOK- I wasn’t waiting for the perfect bite anymore. Fish on and the fight began.

Since I wasn’t on anchor I was getting towed around a bit. No crazy up or down river runs but it was moving me around the hole pretty well. The fight lasted probably a good 10 minutes, with a couple good runs stripping line off the reel. Finally got the bugger to the side of my Outback and heaved him onboard. With a bit of help measuring, I realized I had landed a keeper and was done for the day. I had only been on the water for about an hour and a half.

I hadn’t gotten the chance go see all my fishing buddies out on the water so I put my fish on ice, and my buddy Nate in the back of the Outback and headed back out on the water.

And that’s what happens when you limit out early.

* note: this post was "misplaced" and took place last year when it was legal to bring home sturgeon. at the present time, it is illegal to keep sturgeon.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Outdoor Retailer 2014 : Day 3 : Exploration Day

The first couple days of Outdoor Retailer, we get to meet with all of the great vendors we partner with throughout the year to talk about what they're working on for the following year. Our final day, we set out to scout the rest of the show for other companies that might have just the thing you're looking for... and sometimes just to see what crazy thing people have come up with in this!

See something that interests you? Let us know in the comments, on Facebook or Twitter!

Our demo center sits on a lovely little basin and we've seen SUP explode over the last few years. But really - sleep SUPing? Is this maybe taking it a step too far? Seriously though, we think the idea of using your inflatable SUP board as a sleeping pad is pretty creative.It saves from having to pack your sleeping pad, right?

These ice packs and compression wraps from Shock Doctor are pretty cool. They have joint specific wraps (shoulder, knee, etc) as well as more general shapes and they come self contained in packs that are easy to throw in the freezer so they're ready to go anytime you aren't!

This? Well... we just couldn't resist. Funny sweatshirt for a summer trade show where the average temperature outside feels like it rivals the Sahara. 

Selk bags just look fun. The new super hero versions are the perfect Christmas present for your favorite nephew (or uncle?). They come in adult and child sizes and are a  lightweight sleeping bag alternative (though we're thinking "campfire attire" might be a little more realistic). Need to use the outhouse (or nearest tree) in the middle of the night? No awkward sleeping bag wiggle, just get up and go!  

We've seen them made out of duct tape, but this is the first time we've seen wallets made out of recycled sail fabric! Check out Flowfold's site to see the options.

Every year there are a host of solar cookers. Most involve large reflective dishes - this one is different. A black glass tube, enclosed by a non-heat conductive exterior, gets extremely hot, cooking whatever is placed inside in short order. Gosun was funded with Kickstarter - they have a great video that shows you just how this small little stove cooks.

We love these inflatable lanterns from MPOWERD! They fold flat to about the size of a DVD when not in use - when you need a little light, just blow them up and turn them on. The reflective material opposite the light fills up the lantern with a surprisingly bright light. Oh - and did we mention this is all solar powered? Think river trips, swimming pools, camp tables - these little guys will be able to pack anywhere and light anywhere (that there's sun to recharge, of course).  

We had the pleasure of meeting TurboPup's founder, Kristina, when she came through Hood River a few weeks ago. She had a couple of her athletes (of the canine variety) that were here as part of a local expedition and we were happy to run into her again at the show. Kristina and her team have worked hard to create the ultimate meal replacement bar for your 4 legged adventure partner, saving space and weight in your (and their) packs.

Need a lightweight trailer that is the mobile Swiss Army knife for carrying gear? This might be it! No one was at the SylvanSport Go Easy booth, so we didn't get a chance to chat with them about their latest offering, but a quick glance was enough to impress us! 

Coming later this week: OneWheel! We think OneWheel, another Kickstarter funded company, is best in show for new products at this year's Outdoor Retailer! We got to ride this amazing new toy/transporter/skateboard/whatever and it's amazing! To add to our excitement, the good folks of OneWheel are headed our direction this week and we're looking at getting an even closer and more detailed look at the next big thing. Stay tuned for more photos, video & info!

Friday, August 8, 2014

Outdoor Retailer 2014 : Day 2 : Dagger, Wilderness Systems, NRS, Jackson Kayak, Pyranha

Starting Day 2 off with the good folks at Confluence! Have any questions about what you see here? Contact us anytime!


What happens when you take years of performance driven R&D and put it into a sit-on-top? Check out the Roam (Rivers Ocean And Mountains - get it?)! The backbag comes off and the thigh straps attach to form a backpack for off-water adventure, the hull design is high performance and has edges that make this a great paddling sit-on-top. If you had any experience with the Torrent, think of the Roam as a high performance Torrent! With two sizes and sit-on-top flexibility, there will be a Roam to fit almost every body.

Here are some close ups but Dagger also put together a nice little "in action" video you can see below:

Wilderness Systems

The new Wildy fishing kayak, the Thresher, looks like a great boat, but is sold as a very base model. Want all of the bells and whistles that come standard on a lot of the other new boats? They're there, but you're going to have to pay for them. See the base model in the first couple of pictures and the "pimp my ride" version in the bottom couple.


We are digging the Velocity Shoe! Super rugged and ready for scrambling and tough portages, sticky rubber outsole for a sure grip. And check out this sweet NRS packaging!

Jackson Kayak

The Coosa HD
Need a more stability out of your Coosa? Jackson answered the call! Introducing the Coosa HD, the longer, more stable version of the ever popular Coosa. With an open footwell for ease of movement, a padded floor, stand up paddle holder and other great details, the Coosa HD is definitely going to be worth a look!

The Cuda LT
With the same deck features as the Cuda 12, the Cuda LT adds YakAttack tracks fore & aft of the seat. The LT is also lighter, more stable & is higher performance than the Cuda 12... not to mention, does a boat get much prettier?

The Kilroy
Duck hunters rejoice! All the function of the Kilroy with all the stealth of camo. They'll never see or hear ya' coming.

The Kraken
Want it all and want it now? The Kraken might be your boat! All of the goodies you see below? It comes with those stock! Designed by Jim Sammonds with top notch detail and quality (ex: all accessories are attached so a roll won't leave you floundering, reaching for all your gear), if off shore fishing is your thing, you're going to have a hard time topping the Kraken as the best boat for the job.

Designer and angler Jim Sammonds 
shows off his latest creation.


The new 9R is Pyranha's entry into the sub-9 ft race category. Built with some very aggressive features designed specifically for racing, this boat won't be for everyone... but if bombing down the river at top speeds is your goal, the 9R will be a top contender.  

And others...

Because who doesn't want a water bottle that looks like a mini-growler...? The Little Buddy!

Did you miss Day 1 of the 2014 Outdoor Retailer Show?