By Gary Blankenship and Helen Snell - Tallahassee, Florida - USA

Rather than participate in the Everglades Challenge this year, Gary Blankenship and Helen Snell volunteered to man checkpoint three at Flamingo in the Everglades. AFter their turn there, they went to the finish line
at Key Largo and took the following photos.

Monday, March 16


Here are some pictures and captions from Flamingo and the finish. Also, could you make one clarification/correction. I supposed it was inevitable that given the reporting conditions we would make a mistake or two. Anyway, Naturecalls and Naturecalls2 were already at the convenience store with their food when I came to check for arrivals; they called over to me as I was at their boat by the freshwater ramp. After all, having found their way to Flamingo, it seems unlikely they would get lost navigating to the convenience store. . . .

JRock and LRock in the Flamingo basin plot their course around Florida Bay and Roo and Tinker arrive.
Roo and Tinker sailing up the Flamingo channel on the lovely EC 22 design. When I'm in a challenge, I only get to see the stern of this boat!
A Kruger Cruiser in the foreground (carrying NiteNavigator and Nitesong) and a Kruger Seawind (with Whitecaps) behind it. On the other side of the sign is Wizard's 12-foot kayak.
Stripbuilder and his lovely kayak at the Flamingo ramp. Note he has foam cushions under it to protect that stunning finish.
Your hands can take a beating paddling an EC. I'm not sure if some of these were preventative or all were to treat sore spots and blisters. I think this was Trader.
Matt Layden (Wizard) paddles one of his older kayak designs while his wife Karen paddles his EC boat at the finish line in Key Largo.
Crazy Russian starts to disassemble his inflatable catamaran at the finish line in Key Largo.
The tandem double Hobie Adventure Island prototype sailed by PenguinMan and OceanDiva.
The other Hobe prototype, sailed by Pelican and Egret.
Some of the Class 1 kayaks show their downwind sails, which saw little use this year. From the front, these were paddled by Dr.Kayak, SandDollar, KiwiBird and SandyBottom.
In the foreground, a Chesapeake Light Craft double padded by Sundance and Hammerstroke and behind it NiteNavigator and NiteSong's Kruger Cruiser.
Another look at Matt Layden's kayaks.
I suppose we should have a shot of the first place boat! Anyway, this is Lumpy and Bumpy on their Tornado cat, leaving the Key Largo finish line, sailing to a launching ramp to get picked up.


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