Tag Archives: Kayak Expeditions

Doi Nomazi

By Vladimir Brezina

Doi NomaziIt was late December 2013, on the first day of one of our shakedown paddles through the Florida Everglades in preparation for the 2014 Everglades Challenge. We had just landed on the muddy beach behind the Everglades City ranger station to get our permits for camping in the Everglades.

As Johna tells it, “as we headed inland I caught sight of a couple of figures—a man and a woman—dressed identically in Army-green T-shirts and black pants. The woman was wheeling a loaded barrow, and I took them for park rangers.

But Vlad stopped and said to the man, ‘I know you! We’re friends on Facebook!'”

The couple were Doi Nomazi (“Two Nomads”), Adrian and Mihaela, a Romanian husband-and-wife adventure team. Even though they too are based in New York, we’d never met before, and this was the only time we have crossed paths so far.

Like us, they were on a kayak expedition in the Everglades over the holidays—but they were sailing, rather than merely paddling, their black U-boat, a double Long Haul folding kayak.

Later, back in New York, I looked to see how their trip had gone, and found that they had produced an enchanting 86-minute “video diary” of their adventure, entitled “Echoes of the Eskampaba—2013”.

“Echoes of the Eskampaba” remains my favorite among their videos, perhaps because it features many of the places in the Everglades that we, too, visited on our trip (such as the lovely but mosquito-plagued Highland Beach, where Doi Nomazi camped a few days after us).

But that’s just one of their videos. There are now 28 of them. Once or twice a year, on their vacation, Doi Nomazi visit some fascinating, remote corner of the world. The resulting video is as well-produced as any commercial movie, and more watchable that most. (It’s perhaps not surprising to find that Adrian has a rich resumé as a journalist, cameraman, and film producer and director.) In addition to the Everglades, Doi Nomazi have paddled in the Black Sea, in the Gwaii Haanas of British Columbia, in Greenland, in Alaska’s Glacier Bay… And it’s not all paddling, either: they have climbed Mount Kilimanjaro, driven through the back country of Africa and Australia

Here is their latest video, from Glacier Bay:

Doi Nomazi say that “we have no special training, we are not athletes and we are not seeking any records.” Perhaps not, but their thirst for nature and adventure, and their willingness to endure the inevitable discomforts and hardships, are extraordinary. An inspiration to us all!


By Vladimir Brezina

Through the ironically named Broad Creek… even worse than The Nightmare :-)

Tangle(2014 Everglades Challenge. Story and more photos here.)

A contribution to Ailsa’s travel-themed photo challenge, Tangle.


By Vladimir Brezina

Mischievous? Thieving is more like it.

Everywhere in our travels through the Florida Everglades, we encountered creatures that wanted something from us.

There were the mosquitoes, of course. But there were larger creatures too. The campsite in Fort De Soto Park, at the start of the Everglades Challenge, was infested with raccoons that, as soon as the sun went down, prowled through the camp without fear in search of food.

But the worst were the crows, those famously mischievous birds. Almost everywhere, as soon as our back was turned, there was a crow trying to fly off—sometimes successfully—with that apple or bag of cookies.

Here are some of the crows that laid siege to us as we were repacking our boats in Flamingo

Expectant crows

And then there are the black vultures of Flamingo,  which—as signs in the parking lot warn—have acquired a distinct taste for the rubber lining around car windows…

A contribution to Ailsa’s travel-themed photo challenge, Mischievous.


By Vladimir Brezina

We’ve just had Twinkle as a Photo Challenge—and now we have Sparkle. And, indeed, there is a difference!

Here’s some Sparkle—

Sparkling seas 1
Sparkling seas 2
Sparkling seas 3From the 2014 Everglades Challenge

Now I am looking forward to Glitter, or perhaps Shimmer, Glimmer, or Flicker…

Travel Theme: Minimalist

By Vladimir Brezina

Minimalist again? Ailsa, you and The Daily Post really have to coordinate your Photo Challenges! :-)

Anyhow, we do strive to travel in a minimalist fashion, with only the gear that is absolutely necessary. But it’s a work in progress—

How will it all fit?At the start of the 2014 Everglades Challenge.

Travel Theme: Freedom

By Vladimir Brezina

Ready for adventure!
(Full story of that day in the Florida Everglades is here.)

A contribution to Ailsa’s travel-themed photo challenge, Freedom.

Travel Theme: Numbers

By Vladimir Brezina

Sometimes, kayak navigation is just a matter of following the numbers—

Paddling by numbers 1
Paddling by numbers 2
Paddling by numbers 3
Paddling by numbers 4
Paddling by numbers 5

A contribution to Ailsa’s travel-themed photo challenge, Numbers.