Gerhardt Isla Espiritu Santo


Gerhardt studied woodworking as a cabinet maker in Austrailia and enjoys the beauty of west coast old-growth wood and the creativity of innovation in the workshop. He makes Greenland paddles ( pautiks ) and Greenland skin-on-frame qajaqs as a business and to promote the growing interest in traditional Inuit kayaking. Gerhardt has sold over 1000 pieces of handmade woodwork including jewellery boxes and Morris furniture. 


Gerhardt built his first skin-on-frame at Cape Falcon Kayaks in Oregon and just kept on building. SOF Qajaqs are like potato chips…it’s hard to have just one.

Gerhardt started paddling in Algonquin Park when he was 4 years old and never stopped. He enjoys canoing, white water paddling, kayak surfing, touring the west coast and Greenland rolling. His longest river trip was the Alsek River in the Yukon, BC and Alaska where he encountered 14 grizzlies including a very annoyed mother bear who chased him down the river. 


Gerhardt has done technical rock climbing and mountaineering in many places including BC,  New Zealand, Wyoming, Virginia and Yosemite in California. He climbed all 9 Island Qualifiers (IQ) peaks on Vancouver Island including Mount Colonel Foster. He was awarded a plaque from the Alpine Club verifying that he has an IQ of 9. 😉


Gerhardt has worked as a park naturalist turning people onto nature, as a park ranger involved in alpine rescue in the Rockies and currently works as a Level 3 kayak guide on Vancouver Island. He published the first mountain bike guide book in Canada “Backcountry Biking in the Canadian Rockies – Or – I’m 90% Sure There is a Trail Here”. 

Surfing With Pautik

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