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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Inflatable kayaks as a survey platform

We surveyed as far as you can see and a bit further - and behind the camera as well!

While on recent survey to Malina Bay I did some thinking about better ways to survey Kodiak's coastline for archaeological sites, and I decided that for what Michael and I were doing the inflatable Innova 2 man kayak is about perfect (click here for a similar post).  It fit in the plane, handled rough seas, and carried all our gear with room to spare. And, best of all, we were seeing the coastline from the same perspective as the Alutiiq peoples who created the sites.

The inflatables are also fast and we were able to cover a lot of coastline quickly.  Our kayaks only felt slightly slower than a hardshell kayak.  And while not as fast as a motorboat, we were able to get into shallow rocky areas where motorboats would fear to tread.

But what I really like about the inflatables is how easy they are to pack with gear and how easy it is to jump in and out of them.  There are no hatches or spray skirts.  On survey we were constantly going to the beach and leaping out to check out potential sites.  If this had been at all difficult I doubt we would have gone to shore all that much.  Patrick

Michael added an elk horn to the front of his ride

A tidal lagoon reversible rapids - not a great place for motorboats

Michael took care of the boats while I walked extended lengths of beach

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