Tag Archive | loveyourbigmuddy

Details Details-The Who, What, and Where of Last Minute Preparations

I will be traveling right to left, beginning at the source on Atlin Lake and the Llewelyn Glacier, and ending in the Bering Sea near Norton Sound, looks like.

Lots to do, lots to do. Last day of school was last Thursday, so there was only so much I could do while school was in session. Teaching is an overtime job, with barely enough hours in the day. I have been taking care of a few major planning details over the last month, though.

I have activated my Inreach-Garmin satellite communicator. I will have lots of time in the airports during layovers to fuss with it. My flight to Whitehorse is 19 hours on three planes, so I am looking at a lot of down time. I have sent a test message to my Facebook Page so I am on my way to being prepared.

I’ll be carrying the start manual with me so I can work this thing to the max.

I have spent time twice in the last month assembling the Klepper T9 foldable kayak. I have a pretty good handle on it now. Today I will assemble one last time before leaving on Tuesday. I need to pack all my gear in little dry bags and figure out how everything will fit into the bowels of the boat. There are a lot of ribs to work around, making packing and unpacking a challenge in and of itself.

Small holes leading into small compartments. With only 14 feet of boat instead of 17 feet, I will be downsizing before I even start. Minimalist mentality.

Big thanks again to Cascade Designs for allowing me continued access to their PRO Discount for all of their gear companies: MSR (they make my tent and stove), Thermarest (the best sleeping pads), and Seal Line (source of my new dry bags).

Honestly, I am thinking the 20L bags won’t fit through my frame ribs. I need to figure this out today.

My assistant, Rio, keeping me focused on the task at hand. Is HE focused? On the river maybe…

I put together most of it on this dry run. A week later a did a full assembly, including lacing up the combing around the cockpit, and even took it for a little spin on a pond. Yes, this is indeed going to be an adventure…

I have been dehydrating vegetables, fruit and jerky 24-7 this past week. A drying session can take anywhere from 6 to 12 hours, so the assembly line must keep moving. I am trying to dry enough so that I can pack a bunch in my resupply box being mailed to the Yukon River Camp located where the Dalton Bridge crosses the river. I estimate it is a little under half way. Veggies, Knorr Sides, dry milk, coffee, dark chocolate are a few of the resupply items I’ll be mailing away.

First batch includes two of my favorites, broccoli and tomatoes. I am also drying onions, sweet peppers, jalepenos, mushrooms, yellow squash, carrots, apples, strawberries and beef jerky. Vacuum sealing completes the job.

 

Approximate location of the Yukon River Camp at the Dalton Bridge where I will be shipping a resupply package.

EDDYLINE KAYAKS-I’m just saying, I wasn’t going to pursue corporate sponsorship for this expedition, but Eddyline Kayaks, they’ve supported me all the way. They are the sweet friendship every expeditioner should have with a company. We weren’t able to feasibly work out boat support, but paddles have been a key component of their contribution to my success. Carbon paddles are extremely important for me as the feather weight makes so much difference in my case (more about that at another time). I asked them for a new carbon paddle and, without hesitation, I was granted one.

Thank you Lisa, and everyone at Eddyline, for your continued support of my loveyourbigmuddy expedition and, now, 1woman3greatrivers project. You have always been there to help me out, and for that I am hugely grateful.

I encourage all my followers to research Eddyline Kayaks and Paddles. Good people make good stuff!!!

Here is a map of two potential starting routes. I can paddle a loop (gold route) down to the glacier on Atlin Lake, or travel down behind Teresa Island (pink route) with maximum wind protection. I would backtrack to get out, so I’m partial to the loop (gold). The road goes right to Warren Bay and a campsite is located there. I will find someone in Whitehorse to shuttle my rental car back to town after dropping me off. I am welling up with excitement at the thought of this stunning section of the trip. Taking it slow and easy to absorb and enjoy the beauty will be my MO–method of operation. 🙂

Once I get back up to the top of Teresa Island, I will head down the Atlin River to begin the long journey to the Sea.

Archie Satterfield, author of “Exploring the Yukon River,” writes: “It is recommended that you hire a guide in Atlin to help you down the Atlin River. The 3-km-long river drops 15 meters and runs at about nine knots; it is filled with rapids, boulders, backwashes and shallows. It is very dangerous for canoes and kayaks, less so for larger boats.” He goes on to say, “Obviously, many boats and canoes have run the river with absolute safety, and this is not intended to scare everyone away from it, but it is meant to encourage caution.”


I have already had conversations with some Atlin locals. I intend to have more. If it were easy, everyone would do it. We’ve got ourselves an adventure here, folks! Climb aboard!

ONE MORE THING: My Atlin contact and now known as, Atlin Lake River Angel, Hans wrote in an email to me yesterday:

“Hi Janet,

Good to hear from you!

Atlin Lake started opening up a few days ago – there is no longer ice from town all the way south as far as we can see.
After next week it should be all melted and ready for any adventures.”

Music to my ears, Hans. Thanks so much!

ATLIN WEATHER FOR NEXT WEEK??? Sweet stuff…

I should arrive to glorious weather in Atlin around Saturday. All systems GO! Ya Ya! Doin’ the Happy Dance. Cheers!

Do what you love and love what you do. Until next time…

Don’t forget to follow along on my Facebook Page: LoveYourBigMuddy Expedition. And, I am going to try and post on Instagram, too, for my students who are following me. #loveyourbigmuddy

Off we GOOOOOO!

I can hear the tic toc of the river-time clock

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I can hear the tic toc of the river-time clock. 

Exactly one month until lift-off. Lots of preparation and planning, and school responsibilities, too.

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Bill Nedderman showing me how to assemble his Klepper T-9 foldable kayak last August. I will need to assemble the kayak on my own at least a couple of times. And, I’ll need to splash it before I go. I don’t want any surprises when it’s time to take off.

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Packing and unpacking gear in this boat will be challenging. No shoving or dropping bags inside, they’ll need to be placed. And, strategically placed as well. My patience will be tried daily in many ways.

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This ride is a big change from Blue Moon. I have to go foldable because of the necessity to fly. I wish I could drive up but I have a new school year to return to in August. Efficiency and a light load are key. Oh, and careful paddling.

I’ve decided to avoid the sponsorship request route for my Yukon River Expedition. I don’t like the hustle it involves, and I am uncomfortable selling myself. I have plenty of gear, but may enhance with additional rain outerwear. And, of course, I need a satellite phone and service due to the remoteness of the river’s flow. Well, I think I do. I just found out from World Class paddler, Martin Trahan, who paddled the Yukon last year, that he used his smart phone for all his Facebook posting. There is wifi in all of the villages. A satellite phone allows texting anytime, anywhere. Hmmmm. So, I have to decide whether I need a sat phone. Currently, my SPOT service @ $150, travel (one way out-one way back), and food will be the bulk of my expenses. 

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Photo by Jason Kolsch, Pull of the North Expedition 2016, with Martin Trahan. Martin is paddling the Missouri-Mississippi next summer (more like clear across the country: Seattle to tip of Florida) so we have exchanged lots of information. He has been a tremendous resource for me.

Once again, I am coining this Yukon Pursuit the People’s Expedition. I will paddle and share my journey for those who dream, imagine, wonder, or believe they can reach for their own star. I am not a famous athlete or high profile adventurer. I am a paddler who strives to set lofty goals, to step out of my “box”, and to model for others that they can reach for the stars and be successful, too. Make a decision, the desire will grow, and the details will fall into place. Go for it!  Follow me on my Facebook Page: LoveYourBigMuddy Expedition

LoveYourBigMuddyExpedition-FB Page

Believing is a powerful state of mind. Positive believing can move mountains (and paddle long rivers). It starts in your head. Join me.

And, support me if you are willing and able. All donations are precious to me. Let’s DO this!  1woman3greatrivers.com  Depart: May 23, 2017

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Do what you love and love what you do

See you on the river (syotr), The Great River Yukon

The Third Great River Yukon

The Yukon River

The tides ebb and flow, the rivers rise and fall; the constant fluctuations of life necessitate thoughtful discretion and purposeful direction. The Great River Yukon is there. I am ready (kinda). Though the challenges of life remain steady, the time to paddle the Yukon is now. I welcome you to come dance with me down this free-flowing journey we’ll call adventure. 

Stay tuned. Departure May 24. Shouting out a huge thanks to David Lynch, whom I do not know, for recently donating $100 on my website, 1woman3greatrivers.com. Your support will help me overcome my biggest hurdle, finances. You have inspired me. Now, MY desire is to INSPIRE.

Yukon River solo source-to-sea: Llewellyn Glacier, Atlin Lake, BC, to Emmonak on the Bering Sea, AK.

LOTS to do…

My craft for the Yukon. Well, partly. Klepper T-9 foldable kayak, made in the 60s. Thank you, Bill Nedermann xo

Mississippi’s grand exit into the Gulf of Mexico 2016

 

LoveYourBigMuddy Expedition 2013

A Quick Review of the First Couple of Weeks on the Mighty Mississippi

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The source of the Mississippi River at Lake Itasca, MN. A Great River’s humble beginnings.

 

 

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The Mighty Mississippi starts as a small stream little more than half the width of my 17′ boat. May 25, 2016

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First camp of many provided by Minnesota DNR (Dept. of Natural Resources). These camps usually came with picnic table, mowed grass, and a potty (some much more unique than others). This one even had a little half-cabin shelter! We didn’t see any more of those after the first couple of camps.

My good friend and paddling partner to the Twin Cities, Bill Nedderman, was a happy man when the DNR camp was situated next to the Grand Rapids library. He loves libraries!

My good friend and paddling partner to the Twin Cities, Bill Nedderman, was a happy man when the DNR camp was situated next to the Grand Rapids library. He loves libraries!

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The Mighty Mississippi, still small enough to throw a ball across.

 

Lake Winnibigoshish seemed huge to me (well, not comparing to the Missouri lakes). We skirted the north coast staying in the wind shadow, which took us all afternoon to get across.

Lake Winnibigoshish seemed huge to me (well, not comparing to the Missouri lakes). We skirted the north coast staying in the wind shadow, which took us all afternoon to get across.

Ethan Norton started at Lake Itasca at the same time we did. The three of us ended up paddling together until the Twin Cities. We all had lots of fun together.

Ethan Norton, fresh out of college and from Georgia, started at Lake Itasca at the same time we did. The three of us ended up paddling together until the Twin Cities. We all had lots of fun together.

Thanks to Eddyline Kayaks, I am able to paddle in the rain with minimal adverse impact. And, the barges should be able to spot me a little more easily. The ship captains down New Orleans area said in 2013 that I looked like a pelican on the river. Ha!

Thanks to Eddyline Kayaks, I am able to paddle in the rain with minimal adverse impact. And, the barges should be able to spot me a little more easily. The ship captains down New Orleans area said in 2013 that I looked like a pelican on the river. Ha!

These critters were not so happy with their uninvited guests. However, they did take a liking to Bill (everyone loves Bill) and were somewhat disappointed when he climbed into his tent to go to bed. They left right away.

These critters were not so happy with their uninvited guests. However, they did take a liking to Bill (everyone loves Bill) and were somewhat disappointed when he climbed into his tent to go to bed. They left right away.

Sunrise camped on an island. So lovely to wake up to.

Sunrise camped on an island. So lovely to wake up to.

We're not so sure we can throw a ball across the river at this point. The Mississippi River gets mightier and mightier by the day.

We’re not so sure we can throw a ball across the river at this point. The Mississippi River gets mightier and mightier by the day.

I AM CURRENTLY IN ROCK ISLAND, QUAD CITIES, WITH A DEAR RIVER SISTER, JO MASON AND HER HUSBAND, JOE. I AM TRAVELING VERY QUICKLY DOWN THE RIVER AND CANNOT FIND THE TIME TO POST ON THIS BLOG. PLEASE FOLLOW MY FACEBOOK PAGE, LOVEYOURBIGMUDDY EXPEDITION, TO FOLLOW ME DOWN THE RIVER. I WILL POST MORE TO THE BLOG BUT IT MAY BE AWHILE. COOKIN’ WITH GAS TRYING TO GET TO GULF ON TIME. HAVING A BLAST!

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This handsome couple didn’t seem to mind being photographed…

...until they decided they had had enough. All good!

…until they decided they had had enough. All good!

Please join me on my Facebook page. Hope you are able to do what you love, and love what you do! See you on the river! -Janet

Arriving at Sunset ramp in Rock Island, Monday, June 20. Nearly a month has gone by since starting on May 25, 2016. Wow, how time flies!

Arriving at Sunset ramp in Rock Island (Quad Cities), Monday, June 20. Nearly a month has gone by since starting on May 25, 2016. Wow, how time flies!