Sat - January 14, 2006
I've tried several modifications to my towing rig for 40 mile portage during Ultimate Florida Challenge. My setup using spares of Pacific Action Sail tied to a camelbak waist pack worked pretty well for walking but not so good for inline skating. It was just too much of lateral movements resulting in a lot of lost energy, especially, when accelerating or going uphill. Increasing or reducing flexibility in the body to boat connection didn't change this situation in the case of my rather heavy Sea Wind canoe.
Finally, I have figured it out: It is not a towing rig. It is a pushing rig!
So, no connection between the boat and my body. I have to hold spares in my hands to compensate lateral motions when skating. The only way to do it comfortably is to push instead of towing. Surprisingly, it allows for a pretty good control of the boat. It also solves a problem: to use or not to use trekking poles. I don't need them.
My participation in the Ultimate Florida Challenge is still on hold due to a recent shoulder problem, but I am sure I can use my pushing rig for other purposes too.