Stephan Kesting

Preparing for canoe expeditions

How to Physically Prepare for a Long Paddling Trip

I’m getting ready for a big Arctic solo canoe expedition this summer, so I was thrilled to talk to my friend Rob Sainsbury (@so_aero on Instagram) who competes in outrigger paddling and is also a very knowledgeable NCCP-certified coach in both rowing and triathlon. Here’s the video of Rob and I chatting about preparing for […]

Low water paddling

Lessons from Low Water Paddling

One of the best things you can do to prepare for wilderness paddling trips is to go playboating, aka fooling around on local rivers in tiny canoes equipped with saddles, thigh straps and airbags. Playboating allows you to develop your skills in full protective equipment, friends standing by to rescue you if you swim, and […]

Can you light a fire with steel wool and pringle chips?

Will It Burn: Pringle Chips and Steel Wool?

Any good campfire requires tinder, a fine and easy-to-light material that can then be used to light kindling which in turn is used to light larger pieces of wood. Good tinder can be hard to find, especially in a rain-soaked landscape where everything is soaking wet. So it’s important to know about alternative tinder options. […]

How to light a fire with gasoline more safely

Why Lighting a Fire with Gasoline Usually Doesn’t Work (nd How to Do It Safely)

Lighting a fire with gasoline or other flammable liquids like kerosene or white gas can be incredibly dangerous since the explosive fumes extend out well past the actual liquid. This can potentially engulf you in a fireball when you try to ignite the fire. The worst case scenario occurs if you’ve previously tried to light […]

Does Expired Bear Spray Still Work?

Does Expired Bear Spray Still Work?

A few years ago I pulled off the highway onto a deserted logging road and pulled out an old container of bear spray. I wanted to fire it off to refamiliarise myself with the range and dispersion pattern of the capsicum spray. I checked the wind direction, removed the safety latch, and pushed down on […]

What Causes River to Meander

What Causes River to Meander?

What causes a river to meander and cause a series of curving channels across the landscape?

Cycling the Coastal Camino from Porto, Portugal to Santiago de Compostela, Spain

Camino de Santiago by Bike, the Coastal Portuguese Route

PORTUGUESE COASTAL CAMINO OVERVIEW The Camino de Santiago is a thousand-year-old pilgrimage network all over Europe which converges on the amazing cathedral in the town of Santiago de Compostella, Spain, that is built over the supposed remains of St James the Great. The most popular version of the Camino is the Camiño francés (the ‘French […]

Bark, Skin and Dugout – The Three Types of Traditional Canoes

Canoes are universal. After all, anywhere that there is open water it’s probably useful to have an open-topped craft that can be easily loaded and unloaded, pointed at both ends so it can go forwards and backwards, and light enough to be propelled by paddles. Prior to the advent of Kevlar and fancy plastics, canoes […]

wilderness canoe repair kit

The Perfect Repair Kit for Wilderness Canoe Trips

On a longer canoe trip it’s not a question of whether your equipment is going to break but rather when it’s going to break. That’s why it’s not unusual to spend about an hour a day fixing packs, tents, clothing and gear after you’ve been travelling in the wilderness for a week or two.A lot of canoeists bring only […]

Open Canoe Roll

The Open Canoe Roll

Rolling practice… It’s been 20 years since I last rolled a small whitewater canoe equipped with a saddle, thigh straps, and airbags, so I headed to the pool to practice. I can see some room for improvement, but overall it’s a skill that’s coming back quickly. I’m motivated to make my roll bombproof because I […]