Kim became a SUPer when it was hard to find waves in the interior of BC. Following the usual progression o from flatwater onto more aggressive whitewater. Keeping herself busy at her day job as an industrial mechanic. She loves the community, the stoke and the events throughout the province and country that happen yearly. She loved it so much she went and became a Paddle Canada SUP instructor. Were stoked to have her aboard as an AQ ambassador this year and look forward to what her year with us will bring. She’s not big on talking about herself and after a few edits and rewording she gave us answers that she’s happy with. We can’t be more stoked to present to you 20 questions with Kimberly Kenyon.
1. Who the heck are yeah?
An outdoor enthusiastic river paddle boarder and an avid backcountry splitboarding snow chaser. Wait, did you want my name? Stoked and easily excited Kimberley Kenyon.
2. Where yeah from?
Central interior born and raised, from and located in Prince George, the Northern capital of British Columbia.
4. What are you looking forward to this upcoming season as an Aquabatics Ambassador?
I am looking forward to bringing the stoke and excitement to many of the events that are happening throughout the Rocky Mountains, and Kananaskis Region this year. I am excited to be a resource for Northern BC’s paddling scene.
5. Why SUP when there’s so many other ways to get on the water?
I originally was just a surfer before, so SUP seems like the most suitable. It is the sport that keeps me on my feet (for the most part). Also when I started paddling I wouldn’t dare sit in a kayak due to an old back injury. The core work out from the sport actually helps to keep my back strong and capable.
6. Do you remember what your first SUP was? Colour?
My first river board was a Jackson Super-Charger in a beautiful Orange.
I still have my first board for flat-water, Surftech Universal, 9’6”, white with a two-tone blue deck pad.
This picture just looks cold. Giver' Kim
I have paddled many different shapes, sizes, and designs throughout my years paddling, and I will leave the building up to the experts. I would never say there is a “perfect” SUP because for different disciplines of SUP there are different boards. One board that is pushing perfection as an all around board is the Badfish Monarch. I raced the Monarch last year at “Bow Valley SUP’s Log Jam”. It is not a race design, but I still managed to take second place. It was stable, streamline and light weight. I enjoyed paddling it as an evening out to the lake board as well.
A small remote community in British Columbia, called Likely, comes free of cell service. I love this place!!! You can do multi day flat water touring trips up Quesnel lake, claimed to be the deepest fjord in the world and the deepest lake in BC. The trophy fishing on Quesnel lake is known for its Rainbow Trout, Dolly Varden and Steelhead. Paddle the leisurely Horsefly River (Class 1/2), or bring your big water boats and send the Quesnel and Caribou Rivers (Class 2/3/4). If you are looking for resources get in touch! This place is a paddler’s heaven!!! Check out this video, showcasing the Quesnel and Caribou Rivers.
Special thanks to Robert E Moberg Films
9. What is the longest commute you’ve made for a weekend of paddling?
Prince George, British Columbia to Kananaskis, Alberta. It’s an 8 hour drive as long as the Icefields National Parkway is open. The opportunity of exploration with this sport is incredible and one of the big reasons I love paddling! It’s the best being the “local tourist”!
10. Do you enjoy paddling competitions? Why?
I have always done this sport for personal growth, community and unforgettable fun. (talking about paddling brings back all the great memories and puts a smile on my face!) I only recently started competing and have found the competitions challenge my paddling skills and expose me to different paddling communities which I’ve really enjoyed.
11. How are you pushing yourself on the water?
I prefer to paddle myself on the water, though there is a debate if you are pushing or pulling yourself while paddling. When it comes to personal development and advancement, I believe I am doing this each time I set out. Check out question 12, “seize the opportunity”.
12. What would you say your worst wipe out or bail was?
I was the proud winner of the 2018 “Best Swim” award at Unlikely PaddleFest in BC for my swim on “The Eyebrow” rapid of the Quesnel River. I unfortunately missed the clean right slide line and got pushed left by the current. This corner is known for unpleasant swims and potential downtime, so I committed hard to the first wave and made it far enough before I got knocked off my board that I was able to get washed through the hole and then climb back on my board to finish the rapid. I knew it wasn’t going to be pretty the minute I got pushed left but I also knew that the way to minimize the impact was to get aggressive and try to paddle through the tricky spots rather than float through them and have the water in control. I also trusted that my crew would be there in case anything went really sideways.
13. Do you do any type of winter training?
I definitely do. I go to the gym and focus on my rotator cuff and shoulder strength. I also keep active backcountry splitboarding in the mountains.
14. What’s your dream run or trip?
Dream run, I have done it!! The Quesnel from the Likely Bridge to “The Quesnel Forks”. Honestly though any trip with my community and favorite people is always amazing.
15. What’s the coolest thing you’ve seen while paddling?
Family. The parents in the community who are paddlers teaching their children how to paddle. Some parents only started paddling in the last decade, and now they are teaching their kids about the rivers. It takes any bit of ego out of the picture and creates deeper roots of having a community that literally family.
16. What’s the best advice you would give to someone brand new to SUP?
Have patience and forgiveness for yourself, you are learning; falling does not equal failure. Get into a lesson! I believe that great instruction can help a paddler to understand and develop essential skills with ease.
17. If you could go paddling with anyone in the world past or present who would it be?
My dad. This definitely is a personal and a hard one to answer. My father passed away fairly suddenly in early 2019 due to cancer. I had been given many opportunities to take my mother rafting, she has Leukemia. I never thought to take my dad, because I always thought I’d lose my mom first.
18. Is there anything you would change about sport?
I would change the amount of people who are stoked and get out stand up paddle boarding, to a higher number! A few of these added numbers would have to be river paddlers.
I’ll admit it, I literally went to google to find a list of superpowers. I think I would lean towards control of the weather. I mean who wouldn’t want the power to raise the river levels to prime?
20. Is there anything I missed that you want to add?
Find your paddling community. There are so many skilled and experienced paddlers around. These different disciplines on the water have so much to offer and the exploration is endless.