— Brinestorm

September, 2012 Monthly archive

Source unknown.

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When it comes to gear, I’m of the “Buy Once, Cry Once” or “Buy Nice or Buy Twice” school of thought. Every time I’ve ever tried to cheap out, I wind up either buying a replacement, a backup, or something better. Carabiners happen to be a great example, and so after years of struggling with cheap carabiners, I’ve opted to standardize on massive, chunky, stainless steel rescue carabiners from CMC Rescue. [And, of course, how can I resist when they come in a luscious anodized color that matches the Brinestorm Corporate Color And Branding Guidelines?]

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The whole Point-of-View Camera phenomenon has allowed for some unique perspectives for filmmaking and action sports. While such cameras, such as my own GoPro HD Hero2, live in waterproof housings, the things that make ’em work – memory cards and batteries – are decidedly salt-water averse.

Here’s a handy-dandy hack you can do with an X-Acto knife that will unify your cards and batteries, in small numbers, into one watertight package.

Get a Pelican 0915 case, meant to hold 12 MicroSD cards. You’ll notice that a GoPro battery will almost exactly fit in a two-card row. Cut out the connecting channel and some extra foam around the top to get the battery to fit.

Voila! You now have a waterproof case for three batteries, two batteries and four MicroSD cards, or one battery and six MicroSD cards, depending on how many card recesses you decide to sacrifice.

And, most importantly, GoPro batteries are thin enough that the case will still close with proper pressure on the o-ring to maintain waterproofness.

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And boy, was I tired.

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I’m gonna paddle my heart out in a 9.5-mile kayak race, the Sea Trek Regatta and ETC Paddle-A-Thon, on October 20 in the San Francisco Bay. All funds I raise will support Environmental Traveling Companions (ETC), who provides accessible outdoor adventure programs for people with disabilities and economically disadvantaged youth. Please donate to help out! Details below/after the jump.

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Many paddlers put beads on their deck lines in order to better shove things underneath them. I’ve seen little foam marshmallow-shaped thingamajigs (which I use, myself, on deck rigging that’s too far to reach), bone, ceramic beads, wine corks, you name it. After I realized that I couldn’t get my fingers under my bungees while wearing 3mm neoprene gloves on winter paddles, I wanted something that would give positive grip while not scrimping on style. But I didn’t want anything big and bulbous on my deck lines. Basically, I wanted tiny little handles for my bungee cords.

Enter the prusik knot, titanium beads, and stainless steel skulls.

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Photo simply stolen from People Magazine. Because I don’t care.

I’m super stoked that Russel Crowe is a kayaker, but apparently he needs some speed and navigational training. Because he needed the Coast Guard to help him out.

Now, the Coast Guard exists to help us paddlers out. Seriously happens to the best of us. But man, what kind of cheap-ass, rec-boat barge is that?!? Lookit that arm paddling in the photo. An embarassment. Mr. Crowe, call me, baby. Stroke instruction comes cheap.

Full story here.

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Sure, it’s fun to paddle the briny seas, but how about a high-altitude lake that’s three times saltier than the ocean? Where strange, alien limestone formations appear from the water? Where nothing can live except brine shrimp and alkali flies, yet this supports amazing bird life?

Count me the hell in. So: What was it like?

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