Winter Paddle Board Session in Lake Michigan

Karol Garrison and Seth Haley teamed up to get some amazing footage at the St. Joseph pier,  Lake Michigan, on a Matuli 10.6 paddleboard.   Lake Ice can never be assumed to be safe.   For more information about ice safety check Tom Gill’s article in the Huffington Post

Great Lakes Surf Photo Contest

Surfing Contest

LAKE SURFING PHOTO CONTEST! Contest starts Oct 31st and ends December 1st. Photos will be judged on a number of factors like wave hight, wave quality, surfers style, and quality of photo. Email photos to or post on the Matuli page. All photos must be taken within he Great Lakes Region. Please provide date photo was taken, location (if you can share, and any other details.) More info to follow. Have fun and be safe.

Seeking Surf In Lake Michigan

ClifSurfTuesday, August 12th there was a North West wind and I wanted to find a new spot to surf.  The wind is everything when surfing the lakes.  I was looking for a spot that was protected from the wind but still had swell.  Usually the best to

clean up waves to to surf on the leeward side of a pier.  The waves will be a little smaller but cleaner. 


I was in Northern Michigan so I drove west towards Lake Michigan looking for some fresh water waves.   The first spot I found had good size and power but the longshore current was running very quickly from North to South.  I got a few rides but it was a hike back to where I started.   I kept looking, and found some cleaner lines closer to the Pier.

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Photo: Eric Sagonowsky
Photo: Eric Sagonowsky

Northern Michigan SUP Adventures

It seems like every time we visit Northern Michigan,  I am always are amazed with its endless adventure possibilities and I want to return as soon as possible.


Camping, Paddling, and Hiking first come to mind with I think of the UP.  When you are up there the weather can change fast so you need to be ready for anything.

Pictured Rocks National

The water is cold in lake Superior but the views from the cliffs or from a SUP are amazing.

pictured rocks Paddle

Kitch-Iti-Kipi is a spring that features cold clear water all year long. It is in a state park and there is a glass bottom raft.  You can travel out over the water to see all the fish and the bubbling bottom.



It is always fun to see what Island life is like.  Bois Blanc Island is next to round island in Lake Huron.  We found a few beaches with calm clear water perfect for paddle boarding to round Island.

Bois Blanc Island


Michigan Waterman Challenge


Michigan Waterman Challenge

Michigan Waterman Challenge : For Training, Motivating, and Collaboration

Matuli is proud to sponsor the first Michigan Waterman Challenge September, 13, 2014,  Holland, MI. The challenge consists of four events in Lake Michigan.  All Event proceeds go to the ARC Project and The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project!  You do not need to have a paddle board because all equipment for racing will be provided. More information at

In the 80’s and 90’s Michigan Lifeguards were all over the state, protecting beachgoers. As budgets dried up and cities felt like they were drowning in liability, the Michigan beach lifeguard became almost nonexistent, and lifeguards who were still manning the towers lacked training.

As lifeguard departments dissolved, so too did lifeguard competitions. Lifeguard Competitions were traditionally a time for cities to show off their lifesaving department and for competitors to demonstrate the skills they had worked hard to perfect all summer.  The lifeguard competitions played a vital role in maintaining a quality lifesaving force in Michigan.  The primary goals of the 2014 Michigan Waterman Challenge are: 1) to help lifeguards train, 2) to build confidence, and 3) to develop essential lifesaving skills. This competition will build the cooperation, interest, and skills needed by lifeguards to make their jobs both fulfilling and fun and while providing the safest and most effective lifeguard service to the public.

Lost Lansing Lake

lake open Lansing Mi

Lansing has a new spot to paddle.  After being closed for almost 30 years, Crego Park is now open.  The lake was closed after it was found to have toxic waist in the lake.

Fishing Pier


The park has a brand new fishing pier and a new boat launch.   The boat dock makes it really easy to get on the water with a SUP.  The lake is quiet and is protected from the wind.  Motorized boats are not permitted.  The East side of the lake has a sandy bottom.   I think the lake would be perfect for paddle board yoga.

For more info about the the lake clean up

Update: St. Joseph Life Ring

South Pier St. Joseph
South Pier St. Joseph

New Life Rings Saved the Life of a Swimmer Near St. Joseph Pier.

It has been almost a month since the life rings were installed, and already a life rings have been used to save a life. The nineteen year old Illinois resident was on verge of being overcome by the waves. The swimmer’s father threw two of the flotation devices to his son, and the nineteen year old was able to stay above the water. The swimming conditions were hazardous. Red flags were flying and “No Swimming” signs were posted.

In March of this year,  Berrien County commissioners approved the installation of the life rings after an extensive study.  Many in the surfing community, advocated for this life saving equipment.  It was the right decision and we are happy that the life rings are making a difference.

Matuli Traveler 3 Piece Adjustable SUP Paddle

travel-paddle sup

The Matuli 3-piece paddle is perfect for traveling.  It breaks down  to 34 inches and can be adjusted to be 90 inches tall.

The paddle is made from light weight 12K Carbon and has a brass hardware quick release.

The shaft has  and blade have a matching 12K Carbon Matt finish The blade angel is 8 degrees and he blade is 8 3/4 inches wide.


Lake Michigan Water Temp on its Way Back Up

Sea Grant MSU


One useful web sight I use is because it is easy to find out what surface water temperature is.  This is definitely a cold year for the Great Lakes and while it was fun to surf last week.  The waves also churned up the water making it cooler.  With not much wind and wave action in the forecast the water temp should go back up quickly.

Surf Life Saving Great Lakes Style

Surf Rescue Training
Surf Rescue Training with ARC

Last week was a great week for great lake surfers.  It is rare to get good waves in the summer.  I was excited to get a few freshwater slides, but I was even more excited about being able to share my surf lifeguarding experience with 20 brand new lifeguards.   This was not just a powerpoint presentation.  The Surf rescue skills  were practiced and all students were able to apply what they learned to live situations.

The class was a able to take place because of the ARC Project and the Great Lakes Rescue Project.   Matuli is really excited about woking with these two groups.  In the works,  a possible waterman challenge in Lake Michigan this September, check back for updates.