Sports & Recreation

Sports & Recreation

Windless Surfing or Champlain Valley Pedaling

The dangling carrot this morning -- like many mornings this summer -- was a blast across Lake Champlain on a windsurfer with my bride.

A productive morning, a quick lunch, then back to work. With the carrot still dangling, I noticed the breeze kicking up outside my window. I renewed my commitment to wrap up in time to skitter across the waves, wind at my back, as I raced into the moment and away from deadlines, benchmarks, lists...

My beautiful bride interrupted me mid afternoon.

"I'm headed out. Join me!"

And I did. One last phone call. One last email. Then I dove into a my pea green swim trunks and headed down to the waterfront. I could see my bride "rowing" with the sail. She was pumping to build up speed, hunting for wind. I took out the wind meter and turned it into the light breeze. Just shy of 5mph. Too light for windsurfing.

I could see my bride heading back in toward shore. She was disappointed. The wind had fallen.

But the sun was still high the skies were blue. Water was too rough for enjoyable water skiing, but the afternoon was perfect for cycling. So I returned to the house, swapped swim trunks for cycling shorts and headed out to the carriage barn to liberate Major Jake for an adventure.

Struggle to Transcend

Birthright: one man's struggle to transcend (film credit Sean Mullens)

When images speak louder than words, and moving even images even louder, I know enough to shutter the gob and watch. And listen. And learn. This short directed and filmed by Sean Mullens tells the story of one man's "daily ritual to find his natural self through surfing." Not the story you're expecting. Even when it's over.

Lake Champlain: The Last Dance

Friend and neighbor, Mac MacDevitt, wraps up the 2010 Lake Champlain (TEQH9T65AVAA) sailing season with a chilly haul from Port Douglas to Essex, New York in his Windrider 17 trimaran. Compelling video footage and narrative capture that bittersweet hankering for one last sail despite the inhospitable conditions, and the admission that he's likely to repeat the foolhardy expedition next year. Great storytelling, Mac!

Windsurfing on Ice

When my bride and I moved to Essex, New York a few years ago windsurfing quickly became one of our favorite excuses to abandon our work and escape onto Lake Champlain. Big water, lots of wind and scarcely 50 fifty feet separating our desks from our boat house... Needless to say, our professional productivity plummets when the breezes begin to blow.

But until recently I'd never dreamed of windsurfing once Lake Champlain is frozen. We do a pretty good job of getting out there 6+ months a year which requires wet suits and dry suits for more months than bathing suits. But ski suits? Take a look at what next winter might look like!

Lake Champlain Polar Bear Plunge on March 19

A couple of months ago my bride informed me that we were going to host a polar bear plunge. In Lake Champlain. In March!

A what? When? Why?

"It's a benefit for Planned Parenthood," she explained. "Trust me. It's important. It'll be fun."

"I trust you," I said. "But I'm not plunging!"


TrekEast: March in Florida, Alabama and Beyond

Essex, New York resident resident and close friend John Davis is in month two of his 10-month, 4,500+ mile adventure. Are you following along? Thousands are, and I suspect that if you even dip into the story stream he's creating along this epic journey for wilderness, you'll become addicted! TrekEast is a 100% human-powered effort to discover and share the narrative of the eastern United States wilderness habitats. Please join the adventure.

Lake Champlain: Skating on Thin Ice

On thin ice (video credit vincemps via YouTube)

A friend in Essex just linked me to this video, a quick way to share current Champlain Valley winter pleasures while I'm playing in Costa Rica. This is a friend with whom I've skated on Lake Champlain, so he knows that I love "black ice" conditions. But, the growing trend of thin ice skating concerns me.

Costa Rica: Peninsula Papagayo

Our Costa Rican adventure starts out in Guanacaste at the Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo. A "hardship post" for sure! Nine days of pampered bliss with in-laws, playing in the surf with my nephews, devouring fresh local fruit, fish and seafood, and generally shaking off the Adirondack winter.

Costa Rica Countdown: 3, 2, 1...

It's time for a mid-winter escape from the Adirondacks. And what better destination than Costa Rica? For the second year in a row my wife and I are venturing to the jewel of Central America with in-laws for ten incredibdle days at the Four Seasons Peninsula Papagayo. After that we join our friends Amy and Brian who winter in Tamarindo, but unlike last year when we fired straight off to Nosara, this year we're headed inland to Lake Arenal. Volcano. Hot springs. Windsurfing. Then down to Tamarindo for some surf, surf, surfing!

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