Wavetamer Kayaking

(started in Anchorage, Alaska in 1985)

My first sea kayak - a big, slightly off-center Haxby original - on the shores of Resurrection Bay in Alaska (circa 1986),

My first sea kayak – a big, slightly off-center Haxby original – on the shores of Resurrection Bay in Alaska (circa 1986),

Welcome to Wavetamer Adventures. Just after moving to Alaska in 1985, a buddy and I started a kayak business selling Feathercraft folding kayaks. We called ourselves Wavetamer Kayaking.



As my love of sea kayaking grew, so did our business. When I moved to Kodiak Island in the late 1980’s I began a kayak touring business featuring day trips along the rock coast of this incredibly beautiful island.

Over the years that interest in sea kayaks has expanded to include the history of the craft and the love of the destinations, skills, equipment, and adventures that go along with their use and enjoyment.

Today, I still try to share my love of sea kayaking through freelance writing including regular columns for “Guidelines” at paddling.net and as the Camping 101 editor at Sportsmansguide.com. I also have written kayaking related articles for Fish Alaska, Alaska, Sea Kayaker, and other consumer magazines.

That love of sea kayaking is expressed within these pages. Enjoy!

And remember…

Be safe; have fun out there!


NEW E-MAIL ADDRESS:  wavetamer@icloud.com


About Tom

Paddling background includes the lakes and rivers of Minnesota as well as the Pacific Ocean off Kodiak Alaska. Currently a freelance journalist, book author - retired from other forms of drudgery. I am a former president of the Trade Association of Sea Kayaking, ran a kayak touring business on Kodiak Island for nine years, was the marketing director at Wenonah Canoe and Current Designs Kayaks/US for five years. Involved in survival education: Authored "How To Think Like a Survivor"/Creative Publishing International. Contributing columnist at Paddling.net and Camping Editor for Sportsmansguide.com. I also have a freelance writing site at www.tomwatsonwrites.com Welcome......
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8 Responses to WELCOME ABOARD…

  1. lee marchman says:

    Hey, Tom.
    I found your site today, and have really enjoyed it – especially after the, uh, rousing kayak trip I had last weekend that was a borderline survival situation through poor preparation and training. So I’ve been boning up on kayak skills and thinking about survival perspectives, esp. as I am a scout leader and dad. And enjoy the heck out of high winds, chilly days, and empty beaches.
    Thought the following might be of interest – when ever I change pages on your site, I get a malware or virus notification from my checker. It could well be my own settings (most likely), but I pass it along in case the issue is something on your own site.
    I have a screenshot of the warning that mentions file names (presumably from your site), so if you want send me a more typical email address and I’ll email the jpg.
    Also, here’s some cool gear that a kayaker / canoeist will dig. Check out Ragweedforge.com (owners name is Ragnar). I chanced across this when looking for a keepsake but effective knife for one of my sons. Scandanavian knives. Ended up buying him a great knife for $50, but also a “cheap” ($14!!) knife for myself that ends up being the best knife I’ve ever had. It is perfect for water work, amazingly sharp, and has a scandanavian grind, which I was unfamiliar with. Anyway, it is the #11900, the “Craftline Allround”, and I’m fixing to buy about 4 or 5 of them for gifts. It, and the legion of similar models Ragnar has on the site, are the perfect outdoor/fishing/survival knives. (No, Ragnar isn’t comping me on a knife. But maybe if you send him this??) I tried to get my local hardware store to carry these things, but they just smiled politely, as obviously at $14 there must be something wrong with it.
    Anyway, thanks for a great site. Keep the updates coming…(Lee Marchman)

    • Tom says:

      Hi, thanks for the comments… I don’t know what to tell you about the web errors or whatever but no one else has had that problem that I know of. I do have plenty of poltergeists in my own computer so I know how frustrating that can be. RE: the knives, yes, I checked the site. I am familiar with the Mora knives from that region…the best camping knife I ever had was a Mora bladed knife – someone stole it out of my car a long time ago. I have several camping knives, all good, but the Mora blade is still one of the best. Speaking of that, I am about to post a short piece on several types of knives to consider for camping general use. Look for it on the site on the “Outdoor Gear Review” page in a few days. Have Fun; Be Safe out there!

  2. Doug Barkley says:

    Just looking over some of Tom’s work. What a good man and kind. I wish he was near where I live. Doug

  3. rich massey says:

    Dear Tom,
    Best of luck on your column. Will and I are looking forward to it. Hope you are enjoying the snow. We’ll keep in touch.
    Rich and Will

    • Tom says:

      Greetings, and thanks! I am so slow at responding to these comments but really appreciate the feedback and chat. I am looking forward to the column…it’s been many, many years since I’ve done an actual newspaper gig.Happy Holidays

  4. Don Partridge says:

    With regard to your excellent article on feathering in Paddle.net:
    One additional argument for an un-feathered paddle (I personally prefer Greenland style paddles) is that there is never any ambiguity about the angle that your blade will contact the water when you need to do a quick brace.

    • Tom says:

      Thanks. Good point regarding the ambiguity of angle/position. Most of the paddlers I talked with said that if you have proper form this is not an issue as you inherently go to that position. A friend once loaned his feathered paddle to someone in his class who changed the angle. When it was returned, my friend failed to check it and upon setting up for a brace (during class) did the big splash as the “feathered” paddle sliced down through his brace. Safe paddling!

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