Living in Buffalo we see a lot of cloudy days. I remember looking out the window and hating rainy cold days thinking there’s nothing to do in Buffalo when it gets like this. One day in a bank parking lot this awesome stranger came up to my husband and saw some paddle boards on the top of our car and asked us if we had ever paddled whitewater? Both of us had never done any sort of whitewater paddling before. This guy went on telling us about how amazing the whitewater paddling is in Western New York. We had to see it before we believed it I guess. He took us out for our first time down whitewater in some Kayaks down Cattaraugus Creek down by Versailles rd in Gowanada and we were hooked. I had seen a magazine with a whitewater Stand-Up Paddler and thought I HAVE TO TRY THAT!!!!!!! My husband and I got our first SUP boards and took them down every river we could and continue to be blown away with the amount of water in WNY. We are still discovering small creeks and rivers that we want to take our sup’s down. Any day it rains we wake up all giddy excited to go get on the river that day or we go scout and hike a new river. Life has new meaning on rainy days! To learn more about paddling opportunities in WNY or if you want to come out and paddle with us contact me at Christian@superieadventure.com or check out www.superieadventure.com
Walking off the plane in Montego Bay Jamaica you can smell the sweet fresh air! The atmosphere is like none I’ve been to before smiling faces everywhere. No worries mon! My husband Kevin and I wanted to bring our friends Brandy and Pat down for an authentic Jamaican Experience while discovering the world famous Negril on Stand-up Paddle Boards. Psyche our driver and now good friend was waiting for us at the airport. I’ve always wanted someone to be at the airport waiting with my name on a sign it made it so much cooler when it also read Paddle Boarder! After loading all our Paddle gear and luggage he took us right to the best Jerk Chicken spot we had all ever had!
Kevin and I had spent some time in Negril before and while we loved the 7 mile beach we wanted to spend some time in the West End of Negril where it was a more laid back feel with miles of sea cliffs, reef, and crystal clear Caribbean water! We stayed in a local Jamaican community called One Love Rasta Cottages with two old time Rastas, Jubbee and Boston, as our hosts. They are so in harmony with everything surrounding them you felt blessed to be in their presence. Every morning they awoke early to work in the garden. They taught us so much about the plants and trees and their medicinal uses. The Morninga Tree (tree of life) is used to prevent or cure cancer & diabetes. I felt its healing powers the moment I ingested it. They cooked us amazing Rasta foods from their garden and even took us to the fish market and had us pick out some conch and lobsters. Our cottage had a kitchen so we made tropical fruit smoothies and blue mountain coffee every morning.
The paddling in Jamaica is Unreal!! Five of us set out on a full day of paddling and snorkeling with only 2 of our Pau Hana Surf Supply Inflatable Big EZ’s and our Kialoa paddles. We rotated from paddling to swimming every so often but the current and light breeze gently pushed us along miles of sea cliffs and caves. We called it a Jamaican Downwinder. We were blown away with how clear the water is and the beautiful coral reefs, we did some free climbing on the sea cliffs then jumped off into the water. There was amazing cliff jumping the entire way and a few restaurants and bars that had ladders we could climb and grab a drink. Another day we set off to paddle to an island bar. When we reached the Island we enjoyed some nice cold Red Stripes and hung out while they prepared some jerk chicken and lobsters for us!
Island Life is good and Jamaica is an incredible place to go not just for the paddling but for an amazing experience. The people are the nicest people we have ever encountered and their positive vibrations rub off on you! It was such a blessing to be introduced to this amazing culture. We cannot wait to go back and visit again with the folks from One Love Rasta Cottages, Blue Mountain Coffee shop, and Tony Montana’s! Check out the video below from our time in West End Negril Jamaica!
If you’re looking for something new and fun to do on the water in Buffalo, there is a quick window of paddling opportunities to paddle with the icebergs on Lake Erie. This of course takes some caution and the right gear! With the lake at almost freezing temps you will need a Wetsuit or a Drysuit along with wet suit booties and gloves which you can pick up at local gear shops or dive shop which is not insanely expensive (as low as $240) and can extend your paddling season almost year round. With the right wetsuit or drysuit you can sit in freezing temps for a few hours. Another thing you will need is a Lifejacket and a leash if you’re on a stand-up paddle board. A leash would protect you if any unexpected winds and waves picked up and tossed your from your board, you would be connected to the board and could pull the leash to get you back on your board.
It an incredible experience to be out in conditions that may not look suitable for humans although technology and perseverance has made it possible for us to do so. There is a solitude to paddling around big chunks of ice and seeing the beautiful city skyline and Canada right across the way. My husband and I Paddle Year Round. We even surfed the November Blizzard back in 2015. Some people say we are risking our lives but there are many people around the world who paddle in freezing temps and waters. There are people giving guided paddle tours in Antarctica! Buffalo New York has incredible paddling year round and is underutilized. We want to help provide the information you would need to Extend Your Paddling Season SAFLEY! ENJOY THE COLD WATER! If you have any questions relating to cold water paddling feel free to call us - SUP ERIE ADVENTURES 716-868-2975!
Kevin and Christian are two athletes that love to travel. Follow their adventures as they explore the diverse places and activities they encounter around Western New York and beyond.