Sunday, July 31, 2016 - 9:37pm    CoreySpoores

Beginner, Intermediate, or Advanced Kayaker

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Saturday, June 25, 2016 - 7:17am    CoreySpoores

Breaking Down Risk

Breaking down risk and its application to whitewater kayaking helps determine success or failure while on the river.  Whether you are new to whitewater or a seasoned veteran, we all deal with fear and anxiety while on the water. When we look at most new kayakers they tend to lack self-confidence, as our skill level increases our self-confidence increases. Until “it” happens, that swim in a hole or long set of rapids; or taking a hard hit under water.

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Tuesday, May 24, 2016 - 9:00am    CoreySpoores


Over time certain ideas change in popularity when it comes to whitewater kayaking and the gear we bring on the water. When I began to kayak whitewater I was told as a beginner that the BIG 5, Helmet, PFD, Paddle, Kayak, and a Skirt were all that I needed. As a beginner I was told to stick to shore if there was a kayaker who had just experienced a boat separation, a.k.a. a swimmer. I was told that I needed training to be useful, and not a hindrance. I was told to take a swift water rescue class, and then after that class I needed to get a throw rope and a river knife.

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Tuesday, May 10, 2016 - 2:50pm    CoreySpoores

Late Spring Round Up

Figure 1 Cactus in Bloom

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Friday, March 25, 2016 - 9:25am    CoreySpoores

March, the one month in the year that can come in like a lion or out like a lamb. This season it came in like a lamb and out like a lion for training at  New Mexico Kayak Instruction. We kicked off the month with our Level 1, Introduction to Kayaking-Whitewater and Recreation, and our Level 2, The Kayak Roll.  This was quickly followed up by Kelly and Corey attending a professional skills development class in Saluda, North Carolina.

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Wednesday, March 9, 2016 - 11:23pm    Admin

When I came across a meet-up group for kayaking, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I was just days out of a marriage and my life was still mostly packed into boxes. I was untethered, uncertain, and seeking change in my life. I attended the Sandia Paddle & Film Festival extravaganza later that evening and although I hadn’t really met anyone yet, and I’d only kayaked for a very short time on the lake, I was already hooked. I just hadn’t realized it yet.

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Friday, February 26, 2016 - 10:03am    CoreySpoores

Class Group Photo


Hey gang welcome back! New Mexico Kayak Instruction is excited to share some information about our upcoming classes, which include 6 FREE hours of classroom lecture!

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Monday, February 1, 2016 - 6:51am    CoreySpoores


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Friday, June 14, 2013 - 5:21pm    Admin

This past Wednesday, we participated at the Beyond Limits Wheelchair Sports Camp for the second year in a row, sponsored by the Carrie Tingley Hospital Foundation and run by our friends Scott Hubbard and Mary Beth Schubauer. Pool time is limited during the summer, and after nearly 5 years of lobbying for pool time for kayaking at this wheelchair camp, last year, we were given only 45 minutes introduce our program to these non-traditional paddlers.  We ran 30+ kids through kayaks a few minutes at a time and their response was very positive.   It was obvious from the very beginning - a kayak can go places wheelchairs cannot go, where there are no speed bumps, curbs or need for ramps.

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Friday, May 3, 2013 - 9:11am    Admin

In case you missed the "Canoe & Kayak (Magazine's) Beginner Guide" 2013 Annual edition, check out this instructor profile of NMKI owner Kelly Gossett


Many 'Thanks!' to local writer Zoe Krasney for submitting this well-written story and to Brent Hall of Light Benders Photography for the photos.  And, Thanks! to all of our valued customers and ambassadors who share our love for kayaking in New Mexico!

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Friday, January 11, 2013 - 11:29am    Admin

Who says you can't kayak in New Mexico?  And who says it's only something you do in the summer?  One of the most beautiful experiences I've had kayaking in New Mexico was in the middle of winter at Abiquiu Lake.  The partially frozen lake reflected a grey/silver sky and a light dusting of fresh, white snow covered the red rocks and evergreen trees.  Since that time, it's been a goal of mine to prepare NMKI students for winter paddling, not just in New Mexico, but Alaska, Montana or wherever their travels may take them.  And the annual Mid-Winter Eagle Count at Abiquiu Lake provided the perfect opportunity to practice skills we've learned throughout the year!

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Thursday, October 25, 2012 - 9:49am    Admin

Last night, members of the Albuquerque / Santa Fe Kayak Meetup kayaking club raised $200 for our friends at the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation - New Mexico Chapter.  The theme, "Ultiamte Kayak Frisbee" drew more than 20 paddlers, age 12 to 60-something, for a fun, friendly match.  If your non profit organization would like to "Adopt A Pool" for kayaking and fundraising, please contact us directly!

Click here for more photos of this event.

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Wednesday, April 25, 2012 - 9:01am    Admin

The following information was taken from the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District's web-page on April 25th.  It is no surprise that the MRGCD provides a dysfunctional broken link to the online form for public comments to a time-sensitive issue.  The roads adjacent to the canals, laterals and levees are one of the primary means of accessing the Rio Grande Bosque, and some areas in question are in the City of Albuquerque's Open Space.  Other areas include Algadones, Corrales North Beach and the NW corner of Alameda and the river.  If adopted, kayaking, biking, dog walking and many other recreational activities accessed along the MRGCD roads will become a crime.

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Tuesday, April 10, 2012 - 9:21am    Admin

On Saturday, April 7th, Mayor Richard Berry and his family joined 45 paddlers from the Greater Albuquerque / Santa Fe Kayak Meetup on a leisure float through the Rio Grande Bosque from Calabacillas Arroyo to Central. 

The Rio Grande is much wider from Alameda to I-40, so it's shallower than other parts of the river.  The recent snowmelt and water transportation to Elephant Butte gave us ideal conditions for a rare opportunity to paddle right through the heart of the city.  

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Thursday, March 8, 2012 - 11:00am    Admin

Yesterday was my first experience working with the New Mexico Film industry, aside from a few independent projects, but it's something I've wanted to do for quite a while.  With more than 70 kayaks in our program, New Mexico Kayak Instruction, Inc. (NMKI) makes it easy for Directors, Producers and Location Managers to find the perfect style of kayak, and color, for the perfect scene.

Proceeds from this and future film projects go to fund our non-profit, Kayak New Mexico (501(c)3 status pending), where we provide free or reduced-cost instruction, events and activities for kids and veterans with disabilities, at-risk teens and support environmental education and conservation efforts.

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Tuesday, October 18, 2011 - 6:37am    Admin

Every time I watch a video like this, I try to imagine the stroke placement and body mechanics as if I was in the boat.  One of the most misunderstood concepts in paddling is the role that our feet play when we paddle; mostly because they're inside the boat, under the skirt, and we can't see how others use their feet. In the Intro to Kayak and Whitewater Weekend class, we talk quite a bit about using our hips, knees and feet to drive the boat.  Here are a few examples where driving with your feet will really help gain power and control.

Europe 2011 from Isaac Levinson on Vimeo.


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Wednesday, April 27, 2011 - 12:55pm    Admin

In the last few weeks, Mayor Berry has shed some light on his vision for Albuquerque 25 years from now.  In the Sunday, April 24th edition of the Albuquerque Journal mentioned some ideas for improvement, which includes ~ "$30 million for Rio Grande Enhancements." The vision, while still conceptual, suggest a number of kayaking activities. 

Mayor Berry and other from City Hall recently visited Oklahoma City, which in December 2009 approved a $65 million downtown revitalization project, and included a $25 million whitewater park. OKC's whitewater park is a major appeal to the tourism and travel to the area, and through rafting and international competitions, is a major driver of the local economy. Mayor Berry is especially interested in exposing more people to the river and water recreation projects, where people can get their feet wet, and experience the river in new, fun ways.

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011 - 11:35am    Admin

The 31 mile "Wild and Scenic" section of Rio Chama is a well-known gem among experienced boaters.  But because access is limited by the Bureau of Land Management (a conservation effort), anytime I get a chance to paddle through the Wild & Scenic section, I jump on it with great anticipation.  The fact this would be our first kayak-supported trip was an added bonus.  The river is far more "scenic" than it is "wild" and offers something for everyone, families and kids as well!

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011 - 9:33am    Admin

It's been 20-something years since I've been to Big Bend National Park, and that was long before I started kayaking.  Big Bend National Park is only about 11 hours from Albuquerque, but once you're in Panther Junciton (the heart of the park) you're only an hour or two, at most, from any river access point, making it very easy to hit several sections, back-to-back.

Many New Mexicans have experienced the park through dozens of hiking trails as well as improved and backcountry camping areas.   Climbing and mountain biking are also allowed in the park but are "unofficially discouraged" because there is little written information, the conditions are harsh, and often well away from water sources.  All of this makes kayaking on the Rio Grande River one of the best, and least known ways to experience Big Bend National Park.

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Friday, March 11, 2011 - 9:59pm    Admin

2011 is already shaping up to be the busiest season since starting NMKI in 2008.  I knew this time would come, and spent much of the earlier years investing in the community, leading trips of former students to Colorado, and the various water-ways throughout New Mexico, so they could learn the routes, take future generations of students out, and grow the community organically. 

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Sunday, March 6, 2011 - 10:07pm    Admin

I was asked to select a cast of 12 people who've never kayaked before, and teach them the skills they'd need to do a class III multi-day expedition whitewater kayak trip.  The plan is to take them thru the Gila Wilderness during the week of Mar. 12 - 18. However the snowpack is light there now, so we're looking at other options; either Big Bend or possibly the Rio Chama.

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Saturday, March 5, 2011 - 11:55am    Admin

More and more, I've been asked to teach classes to different special needs programs; particularly The Autism Programs at UNM's Center for Development and Disability.   They've become huge supporters and it is without question one of the neatest things I've ever been a part of. 

Today I worked with Doris M's adaptive PE elementary class at West Mesa Aquatic Center.  She had about seven students in class. At the end of class, every student asked when they could kayak again!  Unfortunately, because there is no formal agreement with APS, I could not give them an honest answer.

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Thursday, April 1, 2010 - 8:49am    Admin

Each year the New Mexico Adventure Racing Club host a series of adventure racing clinics, from basic map & compass navigation, to rappelling, kayaking and mountain biking. On March 28th, 12 racers from NMARC met me at Cochiti for a cold wet day of customized kayak training specifically for adventure racing.

For those who are new to Adventure Racing, it's kinda like a triathelon, but instead of swimming, biking and running - it's hiking, mountain biking and kayaking - with a twist.  Instead of relying strictly on strenght, fitness and endurance, almost all legs of an AR involve navigation; that is - using a map & compass to find some hidden point in the terrain. Like Easter Egg hunting, with a map!

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Saturday, March 27, 2010 - 8:56pm    Admin

Several of us from the Albuquerque Kayak Meetup group decided to head south to a warm, sunny, tropical environment for some Spring Break kayaking. We got as far as the Gila Wilderness. It was neither warm nor tropical....but sunny and every bit as beautiful.

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Monday, January 18, 2010 - 5:03pm    Admin
As many of you know, it's been a goal of mine for some time to start an adaptive paddling program in New Mexico. Many positive developments have evolved over the past few months and the program is really starting to take shape.

In the beginning, my focuse will be serving disabled veterans from Afganastan and Iraq, though all veterans are invited to participate; especially those who are already paddlers. Eventually, I'd like to work with at-risk youths as well, pairing Vets with Kids; Big Brother/Big Sister style. That's well down the road though.

Our mission is to provide physical education, recreation, rehabilitation and socialization so that these men and women can experience for themselves the freedom and adventure kayaking has to offer as well as the camaraderie the paddling community has to offer. 

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