Don't Be a "BULKHEAD"

I am sure each of us has done something in our sea kayaking careers that was weak on being right. In other words, after the catastrophe (if we were still alive) we have remarked to ourself "Boy, was that stupid!!!" Some of these incidents were due to ignorance and some were due to not thinking. Regardless of the reason we can all learn from our collective mishaps.

My wife Hadley coined a phrase in the spring of 1998 for such non-thinking/non-knowing events. After one of my less brilliant moments she said "don't be a bulkhead." Remember "Good judgment is learned from experience and experience is learned from bad judgment." Let's help others by sharing the times we were "Bulkheads."

"I was a BULKHEAD when I ..."

One of my favorites is forgetting to put my neoprene hatch cover on and going kayaking with just the plastic hatch cover over the hatch. Each wave coming over my stern added a little more water into my rear compartment. Once you try to get the water out of a rear hatch while on the water you will NEVER forget to check for the neoprene hatch cover again. In fact I check hatches and bulkheads on all the kayaks in any group in which I paddle. - Wayne Horodowich

Instant Gatorade is a great addition to a hydration pack providing you already have some water in it. One of my true bulkhead moves was pouring the Gatorade in first then adding water. I was well into a paddle when I realized I had the equivalent of bright green concrete in the drinking tube. - Jon Brindle

I was teaching a clinic in Texas and two of the participants didn't show. I found out the reson at the end of the day. When leaving the house with their brand new kayaks on the roof of their car, they backed ovver the stern tie downs that were attached to the stern grab loops but not to the bumper. As they backed over the lines the stress severely damged the kayaks. Oooouch!!!

One of my staff went out for a solo overnight trip to ring in the new year. When he landed on the beach he enjoyed the early sunset. He had dinner and decided it was timew to crawl into his sleeping bag. However, there was no bag to be found. He remembered just where he left it. He admits he will always remember that New Year's Eve because he spent the night doing jumping jacks to stay warm. There is not very much driftwood on southern california beaches for a fire. - Name held until I get permission



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