The Hard Way: The Legends of Salty Jefferson — Part 5, Sober Choices

Everyone knows Salty Jefferson.

Every paddler has heard the tales of ol’ Salty, or at least versions of them.

The stories are the stuff of legends — the type that circulates around the campfire. Stories born of bad choices.

And bad choices Salty has made. If there was ever a chance to make an errant call that results in serious consequence, Salty has erred. Again and again.

And again.

He has lived to tell us these tales (though his questionable paddling partners are not so lucky), for he has learned every kind of paddling lesson … the hard way.

His sudden appearances often beg more questions than answers.
Who exactly is Salty Jefferson? Why is he here now? What is this video?

Do not get bogged down in details.

Salty is simply here to make the unknown known. He appears in order to get inside your head to make that unknown next bad choice a better one. And, all kidding aside, he is here to share his hard-won lesson.
In a case for clear decision making and safety on the water, and not making you next trip any tipsier: Never paddle impaired.

— See Part 1 – The Life Jacket, Part 2 – The Leash , Part 3 – What to Wear, and Part 4 – Weather Ahead in The Hard Way, as well as more on PADDLING SAFETY, including the anatomy of a tragic Washington sea kayak excursion, plus C&K’s full Safer Paddling Series.

The article was originally published on Canoe & Kayak

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