Thursday, November 21, 2013

Eastern Arctic Kayaks - Hudson Strait

Here's a bunch of pictures of Hudson Strait kayaks.  They came to me by way of Bill Samson, I believe.  They are labeled something like Burwell1, Burwell2. Wikipedia has some info on Burwell Here.
These kayaks are among the longest kayaks ever made.  Why they were made the way they were made is probably a matter of evolution in response to local conditions.
This photo is called, "going ashore at Port Burwell."  Looks like plenty of ice in winter.  Apparently kayaking here was a summer activity.
Caption: "Port Burwell, 1919." Looks like a sheltered Fjord suitable for the paddling of flat bottomed kayaks.
Wow, look at that nose.  Overhang on these things was up to 4 feet.  So if the boat was 22 foot long, length on the water was more like 18 feet.  The long overhang appears to have about as much function as fins on a Cadillac, but I suspect that it actually is a useful way to get a flat bottomed boat over a wave without undue pounding. Also note the long paddle.  Looks to be about ten feet long with narrow blades, 3 inches max, maybe less.
One more time a little more from the side.
And here they are racing.  The paddlers are generating a good deal of froth like they would at the starting line.  Note the paddler farthest right with his high angle of attack on his paddle.  For normal cruising, the paddles were supposedly held much lower down, even balanced on the foredeck to spare the paddler's arms.

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