Posted by : July 27, 2014| On :
Bethany Anderson sets the ball for a teammate during the Kemp High School volleyball camp July 23 at the Kemp High School Gymnasium.
More photos from this event can be found in the Sunday, July 27, 2014 issue of The Monitor.
Posted by : July 20, 2014| On :
Coach Hazelwood (right) instructs fifth and sixth grade campers the offensive line “dip and rip” technique to stop linebackers during the Kemp High School football camp July 15.
More photos from this event can be found in the Sunday, July 20, 2014 issue of The Monitor.
Posted by : July 17, 2014| On :
By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer
EUSTACE–A handful of people gathered at Purtis Creek State Park July 12 for an introduction to safe kayaking. The class is free to those paying an entrance fee, as are guided tour events held at the park such as the moonlight kayaking tour when the moon is fullest.
The first 30 minutes taught the most important things to know before practicing with the boats.
Park host Ron Antonisse taught the course, which included listing the important factors to be aware of while on the water in a kayak.
Water may hold some unseen hazards such as stumps just below the surface.
If a kayak should get hung up on one of these stumps it’s important not to rock the boat side to side, but to slide the kayak back and forth to get free of the obstruction, Antonisse explained. “This is not a motorcycle, don’t lean,” he said.
Keeping an eye on weather conditions is also an important factor. You don’t want to be out of the water when heavy winds, waves or chance of lightning is possible.
Waves are another factor. Since it is very easy to tip over in a kayak, it is always preferred to move through waves head on rather than moving parallel to them.
The final factor is the wind. Paddling against the wind can quickly tire out a paddler should that occur, moving along the shoreline will be the best approach to returning to the launch point, he said.
On July 12, all four factors couldn’t have been better. The lake was calm, the weather, fair and the water level high enough to negate underwater stumps playing a major role.
After the class members practiced getting in and out of a kayak, holding the paddles with hands wide to keep the elbows at 90-degrees to the paddles and made final adjustments to proper fitting of life jackets, they launched themselves out onto the water.
After a little practice, all were able to move easily through the water. Next came a lesson in self-rescue. Two class members volunteered to tip their kayak over sending them into the lake and received instruction on how to turn the kayak over and get safely back into the shallow boat. It was noted that hoisting one’s body over the boat, followed by the legs to take up most the length of the kayak was the best way to stabilize the craft to get back inside it.
Then paddling out over the lake toward the water hazards was next, enjoying the views, sounds and even smells out on the water was so relaxing and enjoyable.
The class is suitable for individuals as well as families with small children. Life jackets were furnished, as were cold bottles of water afterward.
The next class starts at 9 a.m. Saturday, July 19 and a kayaking tour at 6:30 p.m.. The class is free with paid entrance to the park. For more information, call (903) 425-2332.