Wednesday, July 13, 2016

From the Nose of Our Kayak: Chapter 7 Another New Kayak?

Hello and welcome to the JLB Creatives Blog, where you'll find an array of creative features from a hand-picked group of creative geniuses. 

Wednesdays on the JLB Creatives Blog are set aside for our blog book, "From the Nose of Our Kayak." JLB Creatives CEO, Janet Beasley, and her husband, Don, have been kayaking for nearly 10 years. Together they are excited to share with you their awesome experiences that they have encountered. In this Wednesday feature you'll find kayaking stories, scenic nature photography from their outings, and some helpful tips when it comes to maneuvering your "butt sleds" (aka kayaks) on your journeys.

So if this is a topic that interests you, you'll want to be sure and become a follower of the JLB Creatives Blog, and stop in on Wednesdays each week for the latest chapter in Don & Janet Beasley's adventure blog book, "From the Nose of Our Kayak." 

Previous chapters can be found in our blog archives. We began the series on June 1, 2016.


From the Nose of Our Kayak
Don & Janet Beasley
Chapter 7: Another New Kayak?

The anxious parents
If you remember from our last chapter, we warned you about the sport of kayaking being addicting, and justifying all of the new kayaks you will add to your collection over time. As you will see, our new-old kayak told us what we wanted to know...YES!...we loved the harder plastic and rudder, so it was time to upgrade to a brand new Wilderness Systems T145!

After much research we marveled at how the pictures showed us that the seats alone were worth the price...fully adjustable, softer, and the back of my seat would not fold over backwards when I leaned back. We loved the bright orange color so other boats could easily spot us on the water. There was only one teensy tiny set back...

Our brand new Wilderness Systems T145
...we lived in Florida and had to have it shipped to Michigan to greet us the summer of 2010 when we arrived at our (used to be) summer home on Waishkey Bay in Brimley. Luckily my folks had gone to the cabin a few weeks ahead of us, so they were there to receive the shipment. We couldn't wait to pull up to the cabin and get busy unwrapping our new "toy." 

We arrived at the cabin, and low and behold, the real set back...the folks were apparently as excited about it as we were! When we ran to the garage we found our kayak had already been opened! Then we were treated to the "unveiling" via digital pics. 

Don took the first test drive on the lake by himself. One of the great features of the Wilderness T145 is that you can tandem or single paddle the kayak. He adjusted the seat, and boom!...he was single kayaking in minutes. 

We splurged and purchased....wait for it...wait for it...oh, just watch the video:

After the test drive we headed for a "glamping" trip with my sis and brother-in-law. We went to Germfask, Michigan. The little cabins there were adorable! We enjoyed eating camp food and sitting around the campfire. And best of all, we had the pleasure of introducing the relatives to kayaking...on the Manistique River that runs right through the Seney Wildlife Drive. Here's a video that recaps the fun we had on that trip...

Germfask has an interesting history regarding its founding and naming. The name, Germfask, was created using the surname initials of eight of the original settlers of 1881: John Grant, Matthew Edge, George Robinson, Thaddeus Mead, Dr. W. W. French, Ezekiel Ackley, Oscar (O.D.) Sheppard, and Hezekiah Knaggs. The community served as a station on the Manistique Railway. A post office was granted on February 26, 1890. Germfask also holds a military history dating back to WWII. To read more we invite you to check out an article by the Military History of the Upper Great Lakes click here.

In the distant vicinity of Germfask you'll find the small town of Curtis, Michigan. Chamberlin's Old Forest Inn and The Lakeside Dining Room Restaurant are a main attraction. If you ever get the chance to feast at this marvelous establishment, we highly recommend the experience. Chamberlin's holds a history all it's own. Straight from the Chamberlin's
Janet at the entrance to The Lakeside Dining Room
website: Though dating from the late 1800's, the sprawling, 7500 square foot structure has only been at its present site since 1924. Built by a railroad company near the Curtis station to serve as a passenger hotel, the building was moved to its present location after the lumber boom for the tiny community located between two inland lakes, bringing homesteaders to the area and increasing logging activity. For more information you can visit Chamberlin's on the web by clicking here

Our first outing in the new kayak set the tone for the many adventures that awaited us. We look forward to returning to Germfask some day to relive the serenity, fun, and enchantment.


Kayak tip of the week: Don't pack your hotdog buns in the bottom of the kayak if you're going to be loading the kayak with heavy items. 

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JLB Creatives Editor Dar Bagby (L) and JLB Creatives CEO Janet Beasley (R)