Jim Snyder is a squirt boating innovator, legend, founder and developer. He has been at the forefront of both boat and paddle design for decades. I am a huge fan of Jim’s boat designs and own all of his books (all kayakers could learn a great deal from the squirt boating world). It is therefore a great honour to have Jim take part in the Unsponsored 2013 Q&A series.
Tell us a little a bit about you accomplishments in the canoeing/kayaking world.
I began paddling in 1965. I was a raft guide for 19 years including being one of the original guides on the Upper Yough. I was a steep creek pioneer with numerous first descents in this area including 686 fpm Quarry Run in 1977 and 500 fpm, Elsey Run in 1979, and (~370 fpm) Red Run around the same time. I was an early kayak designer creating the first American ‘short’ commercially produced kayak (in glass) – the “Slice” in 1981 (3 meters long). I was also the first person to do flatwater cartwheels in a kayak in the “Baby Arc” in January 1981. I was also one of the pioneers of squirt boating and have designed around 50 squirt boats- many which never got out of prototyping stage. I’ve designed around 80 boats in total.