Traditional Arctic Kayak Symposium (TAKS)

Fall is here, and with it arrived colder temperatures, crisp clean air, the first storms of the season and a wild and unpredictable ocean. But before any of this happened, there was one last 2009 symposium on the California coast. The Traditional Arctic Kayak Symposium (TAKS) is a three day kayaking event that rotates locations throughout California. This year it took place in San Simeon, a small oceanside town in the southern portion of the state.

San Simeon, California

I arrived the morning of the second day because I had been instructing the week before in Italy and had to squeeze in a couple of days of “regular” work before taking off for another kayaking event. After quickly pitching a tent I headed to the beach, which was filling with beautiful handmade qajaqs, baidarkas and paddles.

Sea Lions

It was wonderful to work once again with Dubside, Greg Stamer and Brian Shulz. Greg worked with students on strokes, Dubside taught forward finishing rolls, I taught layback rolls and skin on frame rescues and Brian went from one group to the next, helping out where he was needed. Other participants chose to play in the surf break or lounge on the beach, while the rest challenged themselves by trying to make it across the slack line that Dubside had set up between two posts.

Slack Line

The event was a success and included a group paddle, rolling demonstrations, surf play, presentations by Brian Shulz and Greg Stamer, harpoon throwing, an interactive ropes demonstration and a silent auction.



I was in the water for most of this event, and unfortunately didn’t get very many pictures. The few that I took can be found in the gallery.

Newsletter Sign Up

Kokata Kayak Clothing Accessories Apparel Gath Sports Helmets Sea Kayaker Magazine P&H Custom Sea Kayaks Kayak Paddles by OBlenis Paddles Thule Sweden Gearlab Outdoors Logo