FRC offers sea kayaking classes

Kayakers paddle towards the Golden Gate Bridge. Paddling under the bridge is part of the intermediate sea kayaking class available at Feather River College this fall. Photo submitted
James Wilson
Sports Reporter

Two courses in sea kayaking are available this fall at Feather River College (FRC). Dr. Darla DeRuiter will teach beginning and intermediate sea kayaking courses.

The beginning course is available to all skill levels. The intermediate class is available only to those with some paddling experience or who have already completed the beginner course.

The goal is to bring students to a skill level that allows them to enjoy sea kayaking on their own. Safety procedures, knowledge of the tides, weather implications and sea kayaking terminology will all be detailed extensively.

The beginner class will meet Sept. 21 at 6 p.m. in the Outdoor Recreation and Leadership program’s equipment room on the FRC campus for a pre-trip meeting. DeRuiter will review details of the trip.

The course takes place Sept. 21 – 23 at Bucks Lake. The Friday, Sept. 21, class will include basic lessons on sea kayaking, including equipment care, packing a sea kayak, introducing the forward stroke, launching and landing.

The class will camp out at Paisano’s Beach and conclude the evening with a midnight paddle.

Saturday, Sept. 22, will introduce more strokes and maneuvers to the class, as well as detail the importance of weather signs in paddling. These techniques will be taught as the class circumnavigates Bucks Lake.

Dinner will follow a series of afternoon contests. A sunset paddle and discussion on safety and leadership concludes the day’s activities. Once again, the class will camp at Paisano’s Beach.

After breakfast Sunday, Sept. 23, the class will take a morning paddle while learning towing practices and more health and safety tips. After students break camp, they’ll have one last paddle to explore Haskins Valley.

The intermediate class will take place in the San Francisco Bay. The class will gather for a pre-meeting at FRC Tuesday, Sept. 25.

Students in this class learn how to travel on a multi-day expedition in a sea kayak. The students will be fully immersed in an ocean environment and learn the fundamentals of tides, marine life and oceanic weather.

The class meets Thursday morning, Sept. 27, for the bus to the San Francisco Bay, where they will unpack and review some basic safety and fundamental techniques of sea kayaking.

The class will paddle out to Angel Island to camp Thursday and Friday nights.

Paddling tours and activities will fill the weekend. Last year’s class circumnavigated Angel Island and paddled out under the Golden Gate Bridge.

The class will work with Sea Treks, a professional sea kayak outfitter and guide group from Sausalito. Sea Treks will provide all the equipment for the expedition.

The course syllabus emphasizes the physicality of the class. Students are expected to be hot, cold, wet and tired. Mainly, though, the students will have lots of fun.

The course has a $100 fee that includes equipment rental, camping fees, transportation and food.

For more information on the courses, go to the Outdoor Recreation and Leadership page at or contact Darla DeRuiter at dderuiter@frc.e

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