Andrew Elizaga and the Brick Roll

Barbara and George Gronseth of the Kayak Academy put on an amazing event, the first annual Greenland Week. I was there for the weekend portion, to watch the competitions in Greenland-style kayak rolling, harpoon-throwing, and kayak racing. I missed the ropes competition, alas…

Saturday night I also gave a presentation on my solo skin-on-frame adventure Saturday night. A few photos of the competitors in action are here.

Harpoon Throwing

Chester throws a Greenland hunting harpoon

So the harpoon throw is quite the feat. Originally Inuit harpoon technology was an amazing thing for its day, and throwing the darn things isn’t easy. Duane Strosaker took first place with throws at 42 and 43 feet, respectively. You can see in the photo the throwing board (norsaq) and the harpoon itself (minus the business end for safety).

Kayak Rolling Competition

Greenland Week champion Duane Strosaker recovers from a capsize the hard way

The competition really was amazing and the top two were Duane Strosaker and Andrew Elizaga. Andrew was a bit closer to the camera and had a prettier boat (a SOF!) so I have more photos of him.

Maligiaq Padilla, multiple Greenland Championship holder, was judging along with Helen Wilson and Dubside. Both Maligiaq and Dubside did a roll-off and demonstration as well, so there a few shots in here of that as well.

Overall I had a great time and really enjoyed meeting and hanging out with all the amazing kayakers. Being of shared native backgrounds, it was especially nice to connect with Maligiaq, who will soon be a father! Good luck Maligiaq!

More photos below!

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