Dog, GREAT report! You are The Man---and well on your way to becoming a serious, experienced, informed sea kayaker. Fabulous.
On my way but far from the finish which is probably never like anything else. There is always a new way wither you think it up or learn it from someone else. When I rented the Solstice I watch the guy sponge it out by rolling it up on it's side. I guess that would be something I would get myself in short order but I watch everyone like a hawk.
When I watched the instructor paddle I could see me spending tons with her.
I'm on the bottom rung of a long ladder but at least off the floor!
I told the GF that the recycled spackle buckets are for summer fun only or guests. I was in a rented Solstice and she rented some short little poly. I begged her to try the SOT CD thermo-form boat to see if she liked it. I figured bit shorter but better and faster.
She was in a Solstice GTS but it was windy and hard for her to turn. Me in a Solstice and her in a poly I have nothing to do except circle and wait. I have not been in my poly Ocean since I got my Solstice I know I will be in for a shock. I also told her if she doesn't get a class she can stay on the SOT. I also told her if I go under and she has no class it's her fault! She doesn't paddle bad but if we are going anywhere in the spring together she needs an upgrade
My idea was to give her mine and then get a new Solstice HV in the spring. She said I get your old hand me down! They boat is great and near showroom condition, some hand me down!
I would like to find someone to partner up with who likes the rough water. I doubt she will ever be into that aspect of this sport or going a long distance. It is real fun sharing the sport with her. She didn't know me when I raced boats but when I was road racing my Corvette she was a great help like a crew chief. Now she laughs as I come home with more and more equipment. She said is this going to be like the car? I have the car but my construction business is in the tank at the moment and it is to costly at 1200 a day minimum for me to run and not panic as the cash flows away. Then if something else blows it's even more. I bought my used Solstice for 1600 with some accessories vs a set of tires at 1500-1600 and they are gone in 3 days at best. Dam how long will I have my boat years and years. Plus it is cutting down on my waist and I had to buy a leather punch for my belts.
I want to do a few races next year also, even the pumpkin race had 2-3 good serious paddlers and boats. Guy said they have a race across the Long Island Sound which is 13 miles. I have paddled that far but not in a race. I guess it is all about pace. Sound can get real rough. I will have to find out more.
I also told her in June the water will be 45-50 so she will need a dry suit. I guess I can look up that data on line for water temp averages in my area.
Instructor told the dealer that I was very comfortable in the water during the lesson which was good. Then one owner of the paddle shop said I bet your glad to be back on land now. I said I am warm and happy I could have stayed till dark.
They gave me a fleece top to wear if I thought I was going to be cold. I guess that still gives insulation even thought it gets wet? I didn't take it as it probably would have been to hot. I was just right yesterday for temps.