Number 61 Newsletter
Items of Interest: Outings by "Adventures in Florida," FPTA and "Paddle Florida"
Events and Races: Note the North Carolina Challenge in September, and see SUP races listed in “2012 EAST COAST RACE SCHEDULE.”
Articles: Why a Tippy Boat?
Important note: If you know of events and races, email me the info so I can share it with others!
Marty Sullivan
Greg Pflug's "Adventures in Florida" leads trips in Bahamas, Botswana, Viet Nam and other countries, as well as Utah, Missouri, and of course Florida. These trips are more adventurous and daring than the usual paddling trips, augmented by Greg's culinary skills. Check out his web site athttp://www.adventuresinfloridacom/.
The Florida Paddling Trail Association (FPTA) schedules day trips on its calendar, see In June there are upcoming trips on Ocklawaha River, Indian Key in the Florida Keys, Rock Springs Run, Withlacoochee River, and Rainbow River.
"Paddle Florida" offers multi-day camping trips on the Suwannne River, Withlacoochee River, the Keys and other waterways. See,
Florida Competition Paddlers Events (usually 10-12 mile course and 4-5 mile course in protected waters):
> June 2, 2012, Wascissa River Race, Tallahassee, FL, Contact George Blakely, 850-385-4974,
> June 9-10, 2012, Sunshine State Games, sprint and marathon races. see Contact John Edwards, 727-459-6366,
> July 1, 2012, Mere Mortals Race, Suwannee River State Park, Live Oak, FL, Contact Larry/Glenda Frederick,, 352-495-9846
> Sept 8, 2012, St. John's River Paddle Battle, Blue Spring State Park, Orange City, FL. 4 and 10 miles. Contact Marty Sullivan, 407-484-0112,
> Sept 22, 2012, Puffer Fish Race, Tarpon Springs, FL. Contact Cindy/Karl Vogel, 727-938-7685
> Jan 20, 2013, Estero River Race, Estero, FL (Ft. Myers Beach). Contact Paula, 239-992-4050,
National Trails Day Event, June 2, Saturday, Islamorada, Florida Keys. Celebrate Florida Keys Overseas Heritage Trail with a "pedal" and/or a "paddle!" Meet Mark Terrill for a bicycle ride and historical tour at the Hurricane Monument at MM 81, Matecumbe Key. Then meet Monica Woll st 1 p.m. for a celebratory paddle at MM 78.5 to paddle out to Indian Key. Bring your own gear, including helmet for biking and/or life jacket for paddling. Contact Monica for more info, 305-853-3571 or 305-360-0846.
Back to the Chattahoochee Race and Festival Atlanta Ga. June 9 Sat 8 & 10 Mile All Classes. Contact: Tammy Bates 404-352-9828
The Outdoors Inc. 31st Annual Canoe & Kayak Race, Missippi River, Memphis Riverfront, Memphis, TN, June 16, 2012. $15,000 cash and prizes. 3.1 miles. Seehttp://www.outdoorsinccom/pages/canoe-race. Huge turnout, lots of top-notch paddlers. For more information contact Joe Royer, 901-767-6790 or
Dawson County Jaycees Canoe & Kayak Race, Dawsonville Ga. August 4 Sat, 8 Miles All Classes Contact: David McKee 770-401-1122
Savannah Paddlefest Augusta , Ga. Aug. 25 Sat. 8.5 Miles All Classes Contact: Andy Weed 706-826-8991 aweed@savannahriverkeeperorg
North Carolina Challenge, September 28, 2012, Cedar Island, NC. A 100-mile event in coastal waters of North Carolina. The NCC is run as an unsupported, expedition-style adventure races for kayaks, canoes and small boats. Your safety and well being are completely up to you. You should be an expert kayaker and/or sailor before you consider this challenge. Although this event is not an ocean race, the location is coastal, subject to the same weather patterns and conditions one finds beyond the narrow barrier islands and impacting the shallow sounds. For more info see
Miami Kayak Challenge on Biscayne Bay, Miami ,FL Sept. 30 Sun., All paddlecraft. Fund raiser Cystic Fibrosis. 3, 6 & 12 mile courses Event info: Contact: Sue, (305) 978-2233 OR Jose
River Rocks Race Chattanooga Tenn. October 6 Sat, 3 & 6 Miles All Classes Contact: Daniel Miller 423-756-7756
Suwannee Race Challenge & Marathon White Springs FL Oct. 13-14 Sat/Sun 26 & 52 Miles All Classes Contact: Rod Price 407-227-5606
ONGOING: 2011 West Coast Offshore Series for Surfskis, Outriggers and Paddleboards All races $5 per person. Sand Key Sailing Center, Clearwater, FL
(NOTE: PD = Paddleboard, SUP = stand-up paddleboard, SK=surfski OR=outrigger)
2-Jun "Paddle for Humanity" PD, SUPs, SK, OC-1s, dories Deerfield Beach, FL
3-Jun Surf Swap Challenge SUPs Ocean City, MD
9-Jun Surfguys SUP Race SUPs Melbourne Bch
9-Jun 2nd Annual Panacea Paddle SUPs Carolina Bch, NC
16-17 Jun Space Coast Paddle Blast PD, SUPs Cocoa Beach, FL
23-Jun 3rd Annual Onslow Bay Challenge PD, SUPs, SK, OC-1s, 2s, 6s, SK, dories Topsail, NC
30-Jun Pink Paddle (Breast Cancer Awareness) PD, SUPs Ponce Inlet, FL
7-Jul East Coast Paddle Board / SUP Champs * PD, SUPs, SK, OR Ponce Inlet, FL
7-Jul Shem Creek Shootout SUPs, surfskis, OC-1s Mt Pleasant, SC
14-Jul St Pete Splash SUPs, surfskis, OC-1s St Pete Beach, FL
28-Jul Annapolis SUP Race SUPs Annapolis, MD
4-6 Aug USLA Lifeguard National Championships USLA specific Cape May, NJ
17-Aug "Paddle for Humanity" PD, SUPs, SK, OC-1s, dories Washington, DC
8-Sep Battle on the Bay SUPs Ocean City, MD
5-7 Oct Clash at the Passes Paddleboards, SUPs, SK, OC-1s, SK, dories Palm Island Fl
6-Oct Sandbridge Hei Hei SUP Surf/Slalom Open Ocean Race Virginia Beach, VA
20-Oct Golden Isle Paddleboard Classic SUPs St. Simons Is, GA
27-Oct Causeway to Causeway Challenge PD, SUPs, SK, OC-1s, 2s , 6s, dories Cocoa Beach, FL
3-4 Nov Calusa Classic PD, SUPs, SK, OR, kayaks Lee County, FL
4-Nov 3rd Annual Golden Nugget SUP 5K and 10K – Shem Creek /Charleston Harbor Mt Pleasant, SC
by Marty Sullivan
Because with some time in the boat it'll feel more comfortable and you'll be more rested at the end of a long day of paddling. The kayaks you would normally buy from Current Designs, Wilderness Systems, etc. are quite stable and easy to keep upright. Race boats are difficult to keep upright but there's a big advantage -- efficiency that results in more speed.
Stability comes with the burden of lower efficiency, and less efficiency means more effort to go the same distance. So, there's a tradeoff between efficiency and stability. More drag is caused by more contact with the water. A wider, flatter bottom gives more stability but requires more surface area in contact with the water. The most efficient shape, least area, is a semicircle. But it's also the most unstable. A rowing shell has this round shape for the hull cross-section and has zero stability with minimum wetted surface.
In analyzing wetted surface versus drag, I utilized Matt Broze's calculation spreadsheet ( and compared drag for 13 kayaks with lengths of 15.4 to 15.8 feet (waterline length). Wetted surface for these kayaks ranged from 21.5 to 25.1 square feet, and frictional drag varied from 2.4 to 2.8 pounds. I ignored hydrodynamic drag since I looked at drag at a speed of 3.5 knots (4.0 mph), at which speed hydrodynamic drag is small and about the same for all these boats. (Hydrodynamic drag is a whole other animal and tends to become significant at speeds over 4.5 knots.)
The results of my analysis were, at 3.5 knots (4 mph), there is approximately 0.1 pound additional drag for each additional square foot of wetted surface area. This is about a 4 percent drag increase per square foot of area, and a total drag variation across these 13 kayaks of about 16 percent All of these kayaks are pretty stable and are designed to serve the recreational to intermediate paddler. Power output to drive these boats at 3.5 knots varies from 20.7 to 23.9 watts. To go 5 knots (5.8 mph) it takes about 90 watts of power with these analyzed boats.
The average beam of these boats (at the waterline) was 22.7 inches. However, to have the optimal shape and minimize wetted surface, that is a semicircle, the beam would need to be about half that, or about 11 1/2 inches. How would you feel in a boat with 11.5-inch beam? So, a compromise is needed between efficiency and comfort for all us "regular" paddlers.
There's an additional advantage to rounded-bottom boats in choppy seas A flat-bottom boat tends to lurch side-to-side in a beam chop since it wants to keep the bottom level with the choppy water. A boat with a more rounded bottom tends to let the chop ride under the boat without tipping it side to side. The rounded bottom makes for more predictable handling in rough seas. and predictable handling is a huge advantage when seas get lumpy.
My advice, if you're interested in efficiency, is to get a boat that feels somewhat on the tippy side. With some time in the boat, it'll feel comfortable and you'll be much more rested at the end of a long day of paddling. Download the Broze spreadsheet and see if the boat you're interested in is listed. Also, check Sea Kayaker magazine to see if it has been analyzed since the magazine uses this spreadsheet to calculate drag.