For 20 years, Long Haul Folding Kayaks of Cedaredge has been building world class wood-framed kayaks. So when Ross Exler, a nationally-known adventurer and conservationist, envisioned his ambitious plan to kayak across the African great lakes system, he knew where to turn for a sturdy craft.
Exler needed a folding kayak capable of tackling 1,000 miles of heavy-duty paddling. He contacted Long Haul owner Mark Eckhart who modified one of his stock boats to meet the adventurer's needs. The result was a sturdy craft which has transported not only Exler and his supplies but also his folding bicycle. The Central-East African waters of Lakes Malawi, Tanganyika, and Victoria lie in a north-south line but they are separated by 600 land miles. Upon traversing each lake, Exler planned to ride between them while hauling his folded kayak on a bicycle trailer.
The initial entry in Exler's blog of his journey had high praise for the performance of his Long Haul kayak. According to him:
"My Long Haul folding kayak performed admirably on the first lake (Lake Malawi). Its stability provided me with peace of mind in rough conditions, and it proved durable and provided the payload that I needed to transport all of my equipment. After the first lake, it shows no sign of wear and no damage -- not bad for three weeks paddling in Africa!"
Exler is continuing to post updates of his adventure at the Canoe and Kayak Magazine website under 'expeditions': https://www.canoekayak.com
For further information on Long Haul Folding Kayaks, visit their Facebook page or call 970-856-3662.