Great Loop Kayak Fishing Tour E-mail
Written by Jon Shein   
Tuesday, 12 July 2011 08:40

map of Josh's intended route I received an email from Josh Tart. On July 23rd he’s embarking on a marvelous adventure. Josh is going to circumnavigate via kayak the eastern half of the United States. He’s starting in Cincinnati, Ohio on the Ohio River and heading downstream to the Mississippi and on to the salt. From there he’ll hug the coast and eventually work his way through the Gulf and up the eastern seaboard and then back to the juncture of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers, completing a circumnavigation. It has been done before but Josh is doing it in a SOT kayak and he’ll be doing a lot of fishing.

Josh on his journey, heading into a lock

I had to call Josh as I had a lot of questions and wanted to assist in any way I could. The first question that came to mind was how long was he planning for the journey. There wasn’t any way he was going to get back up north before winter. What kind of kayak had he chosen? What kind of fishing gear? Where does he plan on staying? How much camping? What kind of communication equipment was he brining along since he planned on daily updates? What about fresh water supplies when he hits places like Florida’s forgotten coast? So many things were spinning in my mind. I love stuff like this. We had a great chat and I got many of my questions answered.

For starters Josh plans about 15 months give or take which makes sense. He knows he’s going to have time to kill so he plans on spending a lot of time in Florida in the cold months. That’s why rather then cut through at the top of the Keys he’s taking the longest route by heading down and rounding Key West before heading back north. He expects to make the Gulf coast by this September and with recent flooding on the Mississippi it could be even sooner. Then it’s up the eastern seaboard using the intercostals waterway wherever possible. When he reaches the Chesapeake Bay he’s going up it and will cut through the canal that links it to Delaware Bay then back to the intercostals of New Jersey to the Hudson River. From there he plans on using canals that’ll take him over to Lake Erie. He’ll miss Lake Ontario avoiding the portage around Niagara Falls but he’ll travel the other Great Lakes to the Illinois River. From there he’ll connect via canals back to the point where the Ohio meets the Mississippi.

Josh practicing for the trip

Josh said Kayak Kevin was a big help as he had lots to offer after having done his Chesapeake Bay tour last summer. Kevin also hooked Josh up with Ocean Kayak. He’ll be taking a Trident 15 Angler. It’s a great choice as it’ll haul a lot of gear and has good speed.

Josh will have a laptop computer with him and he plans on posting daily to his blog on his website. He’s got a page for all the species of fish he’ll catch and he’ll be taking video too.

He wants to hook up with as many anglers as he can along the way. He’ll be raising money for charity, Team World Vision, which digs water wells in poor areas of Africa. He can be reached at www.paddleforwells.com There will be a Spot tracker set up and he’ll have lots of modern communication toys along. Another place to reach him is on the forum where he’s posting at KFM http://www.kayakfishingmagazine.net/kayak-forum/kayak-fishing-forum-/6968-6000-mile-kayak-fishing-tour.html If you live along the way and wish to hook up or can offer a place to stay, a shower, a meal, or lend assistance in any way get a hold of him. If you're a company and wish to get involved Josh would love to hear from you.

 

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