Another week, another paddling magazine. Not that we’re complaining – it’s good to know there’s enough material out there to keep canoeists hunched over their writing pads, quill pens at the ready…
PaddleMag did not load within a reasonable time but once it eventually was ready to read there was clearly a lot of fun content there.
First observations first. It’s from the Southern Hemisphere – hence the ‘autumn 2012′ dateline. The editorial introduction could have done with a careful proof read, there’s the odd irritating misspelling but that’s just picky reviewing, most likely. There’s really not much to fault with the content itself.
Overall it’s a pretty good read. Plenty of blunt observations from the contributors, such as this one from the editor, Pat Kinsella, and an early kayak-camping trip with a friend – this one on the Wey Navigation, not far from where he grew up in London’s suburbs:
“ We lit a fire, and tried to cook the half-frozen pizza that had been sloshing around in the murky water at the bottom of the kayak for several hours. Long story short, Jamie got a rampaging dose of the shits and has never set foot in a kayak or willingly slept in a tent since. For whatever reason, however, I had a different reaction to the experience. (Although, sadly, not to the pizza).”
Good to know the writers come from the school of hard-knocks!
There’s a great ‘guest guru’ slot written by John Jacoby, who many in the UK will remember from the mid-1980s when he dominated the international marathon scene, winning World Cups and even the inaugural World Marathon Championships in 1988 at Nottingham. John gave up competing on the ICF circuit and went on to be a hugely successful ultra-marathon and multi-sport specialist, winning masses of events in Australasia, including the fabled ‘coast-to-coast’ in New Zealand.
John’s wry take on canoeing and his endurance-based approach to training comes through loud and clear in the article: “I never was a good sprinter but I learned over time that my sprint after 41km was better than most.”
It did seem the magazine was going to be a solid download of testosterone-laden canoeing tales but towards the end there’s a fun feature on Tanya Faux, an elite whitewater kayaker, and some great photography of her in action.
There are some interesting pieces on touring, ocean racing, preparing for the Molokai and a ‘how to’ guide to whitewater racing. It’s a good mix if a little relentless in its go-go style in places. If you’re not really into the Olympic canoeing scene and want something a bit ‘alternative’, it may be for you, however.
It’s well put together, a good read if you have the patience to let it download. The team behind it might want to check that out, it was irritating – and scrolling around was a slow process too.
(Picture credit: PaddleMag)