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Meet Glenn Charles of The One Ocean Project

Mon, 05/17/2010 - 9:41pm

Most of the human-powered boat traffic using the recently opened Dogfish Head Canoe & Kayak Launch in downtown Lewes, DE is from kayakers looking to get out on the water for an afternoon paddle or a morning glide along the canal. This week, however we noticed an ocean kayak loaded with gear at the launch for more than a few days. An intrepid traveller we wondered? Sure enough, we soon met our kayaking visitor at the local coffee shop (Lewes may be a beach destination, but at heart it is a very small town).

Turns out Glen Charles of The One Ocean Project is in the middle of quite a trip. He's kayaking the entire eastern seaboard - that's right... from Florida, up, up, up and into Canada!! The One Ocean Project is "a non-profit organization that uses human powered transportation to educate and create awareness about the mutual benefits the community-at-large derives from a balanced use of the world's oceans, rivers and Great Lakes." (Yes, we do think it's a pretty timely message he's carrying in the midst of the oil spill disaster in the Gulf region.)

Glenn began his paddle on January 30, 2010 in Key West, Florida. By the time he finishes, he'll have travelled more than 3000 miles by kayak - hopefully up the entire East Coast of the United States and on into Canada. Along the way Glenn has met some fascinating people and spent lots of silent hours.


After meeting Glenn in Lewes, we had a chance to have dinner with him. Glenn explained how he paddles on average 20 miles a day, in all sorts of weather and surf conditions. His kayak is loaded with gear including a tent (he often bivouacs on a deserted beach, sleeps along the shore and even spent one night inside a Lewes Little League dugout before being offered a dry, warm bed by one of our neighbors!), a camera (check out the amazing images in the Portfolio section of his website), food, water, a laptop (how else will he spread the stories and images from his travels?), and more. So far on this journey he's paddled with dolphins, whales and many types of shorebirds.

The most treacherous stretch of his trip thus far has been maneuvering the rough seas off North Carolina's Outer Banks. But the conditions aren't Glenn's only worry. What he worries about during the next stretch of his trip is where he'll hole up for the night along the densly populated coastlines of northern New Jersey, New York and Connecticut. Not only does he need deserted spots to make camp, but he needs a safe place to store his kayak when he needs to restock provisions, etc. He's been reaching out to Kayak Outfitters up the coast and figures it will all work out, but after getting to know Glenn for an evening, we thought we'd reach out to the Dogfish community and see what recommendations you all had!

So, who knows of safe spots for Glenn to hunker down or stash his boat for bits of time between New Jersey and up on into Canada? Let him know! He's heading out of Delaware in the next day or two. He'll first cross the Delaware Bay, then head around Cape May, New Jersey and head north. You can contact Glenn through his website. Even if you don't have anything in mind, check out his site, his journal and his photos. And if you see a lone paddling wanderer headed north on the East Coast, give him a wave.

We're looking forward to virtually joining Glenn on the rest of his journey - we hope you'll check in on him too.

Safe travels and peaceful paddling Glenn!

p-s In addition to his website, Glenn says he's going to be posting on FB and Twitter more often... if you want updates from Glenn and The One Ocean Project, here he is on Facebook and Twitter.