Monday, December 5, 2011

Paddling and Cold Water Survival

Paddlers - please don't make the fatal mistake of thinking that since the outside air temperature is warm...than it's fine to go paddling! Winter season brings both inclement weather and dropping water temperatures. Note - if you fall into cold or icy waters... low water temperatures can kill quickly by causing a dangerous drop in your body's core temperature known as hypothermia - -even in moderate water temperatures. A recent US Coast Guard study found that in water temperatures under 59 F, 40% of cold water immersion victims drown... and over 90% of these folks were NOT wearing PFDs! Sobering and chilling statistics. I urge all paddlers to educate yourselves on the dangers of hypothermia by visiting my Cold Water Survival tab... and ALWAYS wear your PFD.

I NEVER compromise on safety when it comes to paddling... and since I don't own a dry suit... or can find folks who wish to accompany me out on cold water with even colder air temperatures... I stay firmly on dry land! During my paddling off season, I'll pour myself another cup of coffee... check out the latest issue of  my favorite paddling magazine.. and dream about paddling season resuming soon! Please don't take the risk of paddling in cold weather without the proper protection! Paddle safe out there!

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