Have you ever wanted to sell everything you own and just "take off?" Travel the country's back roads, paddle down a meandering stream, experience breath-taking mountain views, walk among 100-year old trees, and just marvel at America's beauty? That is the dream that my partner, Betsy, and I decided to make a reality. This blog describes our adventure. The food we eat, people we meet, sights we see, and the enjoyment we find in traveling.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


Since I left the zoo and aquarium profession (Betsy here), yak takes on a whole different kind of meaning. For the 40 plus years that I was involved with zoos, yak described a wonderful animal that is a herd animal, a long haired bovine found in mountainous regions of south central Asia, the Tibetan Plateau and as far north as Mongolia and Russia. Both domestic and wild populations are found although they are not common in zoos in the U.S.

Now, yak for me means a ka..yak! I can’t tell you how great it is to get up in the morning and not have to dress up and go to a meeting, discuss budgets, etc. Instead, I get in my “yak” and paddle out onto some lake or river and see the wildlife from a whole different perspective…..it’s wild, as in wildlife.
Nancy and I (and Otter) have set off on some beautiful sun rising and sun setting yak paddles that have led to seeing wildlife in their natural habitat and hearing their voices and seeing them free to fly/go where they want, it’s exhilarating. Maine has brought us closer to this kind of wildlife and our “yaks” have been the key. If you’ve never owned one, it’s something that you should consider if you have the time. You don’t need to buy an expensive one. The one that I bought was from L.L. Bean and they ship it free to you. And they include the paddles. I didn’t want an expensive one because I didn’t know if I would like “yaking”. But, I love it! When you go out on lakes and rivers and you are not in a rush, you see so much and you just love it. It is something you just need to try. It opens a whole new world, something you may not think might be in your future.

I’ll just include some photos so maybe you can see what we see and it might tempt you to try “yaking"...... that’s what they say in the business….my new business!

Betsy kayaking in Casco Bay at the L.L. Bean "paddle sports weekend."
Kayaking in Songo River, Maine.
Kayaking through the salt marsh in Croatan National Forest, Newport, North Carolina.
Kayaking in Beaufort, North Carolina.
Delaware River, Mt. Bethel, Pennsylvania.
Kayaking with fellow campers (Jim and Lorraine) in Carrabelle, Florida.
Nancy and Otter in Pensacola Beach, Florida.
Western Lake, Grayton Beach, Florida.


  1. Hello up there! How do you haul your kayaks? I think Annie would really enjoy this, but she pushes it off.


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  3. I too have been enjoying kayaking on our big lake. I just upgraded to a sleeker kayak and a lightweight paddle and I think it will make it even more fun and less strenuous. We really love your travelogue. You two seem so happy and relaxed, just sorry about Otter's health.


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