Daily Grind: ‘Top Expedition’ winner stirs emotions at annual SUP Awards

2012 SUP Awards
The 2012 SUP (standup paddle) Awards were held on Thursday, and the evening’s award for Top Expedition tugged on the heartstrings of more than a few of the 300 audience members. The award was given to the late Michele Baldwin, who died of cervical cancer shortly after paddling 700 miles down the Ganges River in Indian in an attempt to raise money for the disease and awareness on how to prevent it. “Michele’s goal was not just to be a person doing this, but to raise awareness,” said Michele’s mother, Ruth, according to a release. “It was a sacred pilgrimage. Your sport allowed her to prepare to die.” To learn more about the SUP Awards, click here. To learn more about Baldwin, click here. To donate to her memorial fund, click here.

Baldwin’s mother accepts award on her daughter’s behalf; photo courtesy SUP the mag

Downhilling Fort William
Downhill bike racing might not be something that all of us want to do, given the threat of many broken bones and all, but it is certainly something that all of us outdoorsy types can appreciate, especially since downhill World Cups are often held in stunningly beautiful locales such as Fort William, Scotland, where brilliant rolling hillsides surround saw-toothed mountains. You can experience Fort William–and downhill mountain biking–without chipping any teeth by watching the below video, which Red Bull put together for sponsored athlete Rachel Atherton, who was the 2008 elite UCI Downhill world champ. Atherton, who is British, talks in the video about why Fort William is such a special event, what its like riding in front of the Scottish crowd, and why she seems to place second there every year. Click here to watch it, or click play below.

Click play to watch the video

‘Down the Dnieper’ journey ends
Kayakers Jeffrey Andreoni and Giulio D’Eramo have finally finished their journey down the Dnieper River in the Ukraine, for which they wrote a series of dispatches for Canoe and Kayak magazine. In their last dispatch they talk about putting their baidarkas (sea kayaks) to rest, attending the wedding of a friend they met along the way, and camping on some random beaches. Click here to read the full story, as well as ponder on what their next adventure might be.

Photo of a friendly Ukrainian wedding courtesy Canoe and Kayak