Flotsam and Jetsam [28]

Toxic cloud strikes rural paradise

Residents of Candelo in the far south of the State are up in arms over the ‘blue resin cloud’ that hangs over this picturesque village, situated 5 kilometres inland from Merimbula. One resident, who didn’t wish to be named, said “some days the fog is a real pea-souper, especially in winter – it was beautiful here before that sea kayaker bloke came to town – should be a law against it!”.

Another resident said that she was sick of her washing ‘going stiff’ if left out too long,

“I retired here after living in Port Kembla for thirty years” said Mrs Mavis Brampton, “but this is worse than the steelworks ever was – the dogs are off their food and even my cat Fluffy stinks of resin”.

The residents believe that the cause of the phenomenon is a newly established kayak factory, owned by a Mr Ron Mudie, which is now turning out 20 new kayaks each week.

Our ‘Flotsam’ reporter caught up with the controversial ex club member/ turned kayak builder in his workshop, lovingly applying gelcoat. When the ‘fog’ issue was raised, Mr Mudie denied that the aroma was a health hazard, and in fact advocated the beneficial qualities of polyester resin.

“The fumes are good for you for sure – clears me sinuses…never wear a mask!” he shrieked enthusiastically! Swatting vigorously at imaginary blowflies, the menacing Mr Mudie added, “Fumes never did me no ‘arm, never did me no ‘arm!”, before chasing our reporter all the way to the Post Office.

Recycling Innovation

A recent ABC wildlife special on the lifestyle of the gorilla contained graphic footage of a male primate eating it’s own (green) excretia. David Attenborough explained the gorilla was seeking to gain extra sustinence from it’s last meal of super-nutritious seeds. What’s this got to do with sea kayaking? Well, given the perennial problem sea-kayakers have with food storage space on longer trips, and the obsession of some (eg. J.Caldwell) to paddle “ultra-light”, could it be that our ancient cousins have given us a simple solution! But would semolina taste as good second time round. And how would you cook it?

(I would like to apologise to club members who were actually eating semolina while reading the preceeding article – it is acknowledged that the piece was in extremely bad taste and should never have been published. The ‘Flotsam’ reporter responsible has been redeployed to mailing duties! – Editor)

Far North

As you read this Dirk Stuber, Arunas Pilka, John Wilde and Gary Parker should be on the return leg of their “double crossing” of Torres Strait. The group’s choice of kayaks for the trip has raised some eyebrows. Apart from the sensible John Wilde (who is paddling a sensible Greenlander), the others are gamely experimenting with boats reknowned for their dislike of travelling in a straight line. If they make it back, we look forward to the Pilka Diaries!

..and for Canberra region paddlers

Lake Burley Griffin Watersports Day!

Come along on October 13th and support the club in recruiting new members and, as a bonus, get to paddle the latest boats from Perception, Dagger and Pyranha. Bring your sea kayak, family and friends for a day on the water. A great range of watercraft including white water and racing kayaks, beginner and high performance sail boards and canoes will be available. Representatives from many of the suppliers will also be there for you to grill on the latest design advances.

  • When: 9:30am – 4:30pm, Sunday 13th October
  • Where: Yarralumla Bay beach on Lake Burley Griffin, Canberra (a sandy beach with grass and shade)
  • Bring: Food and drink, your boat, your family and anyone you know who’s ever wanted to try paddling.


Puffin wanted – in good condition, preferably with paddle, spray deck , PFD etc. Please phone David Cregan (06) 251 2250, all hours. Will consider any reasonable boat.

Paddle Float Systems

Easy to use – The Pelican Paddle Float System provides a quick and reliable means of getting back into the kayak after a capsize. It also provides excellent stability while fishing or resting.

The Paddle Glove is clipped to the foredeck of the kayak in a position where it is easily reached from the cockpit and can be mounted so that access is either from the port or starboard side.

A paddle tie fitted to the foredeck in front of the gloveallows the paddle shaft to bepulled down and secured.

The Permanent Buoyancy Paddle Float when not in use opens out flat to provide minimum wind resistance when secured on the rear deck.In use it folds around the paddle blade and is secured with a velcro strap. A floating line between the paddle float and the rear deck of the kayak allows the float to be released from the paddle after re-entry, discarded and later retrieved when conditions are more stable.