Paddling tips, tricks, news and gear reviews from an Unsponsored point of view

Day: 13 June 2013

Lotus Lowrider PFD

This is the top freestyle vest from US manufacturer Lotus. Lotus is one of the U.S’s top buoyancy aid or as they say PFD (personal flotation device) manufacturers, and at current they aren’t available in the UK, neither are they CE approved, however they do rock!

I obtained my ‘Lowrider’ via mail order from www.boatwerks.net a Canadian company with shops on the banks of the Ottawa, but most shops in the US and Canada stock them, so if your planning a trip, or don’t mind paying the shipping, its well worth it.


At first glance the ‘Lowrider’ is a sweet looking bit of kit, super low profile as the name suggests, and ultimate freedom of movement. It has straps on the shoulders and 2 on the sides to adjust and tighten the fit of the pfd including a unique internal harness that gives a good tight fit with out constricting breathing. It’s constructed of a solid cordura shell, and an Airtex type foam. Continue reading

Old School Series – Twitch V

Twitch V starsTao Berman, Josh Bechtel, Erix Seymour and Ben Stookesbury. As the title suggests this is the 5th video in the Twitch series.


Twitch V includes “Wake Boating”, first descents in Alaska, Argentina, British Columbia, Idaho, and Washington, as well as many extras like a documentary about Tao called “Fearless” & the original “Twitch” from way back in 1999. Continue reading

Old School Series – Twitch IV

Twitch IV is packed with action, scenery and even a world record. It stars Tao Berman, Brandon Knapp, Josh Bechtel and Stuart Smith. High n’ Mighty distribution are now bringing the Twitch series into the UK.


Tao, Josh, Brandon and Stuart run some of the best whitewater in the US, Canada, Norway and Hisaniola. This DVD includes 10 first decents and captures some of the most spectacular waterfalls ever attempted.This includes Tao Berman smashing Shaun Baker’s speed/altitude world record (75 ft/19.9 seconds) by descending 100 ft. in 19.4 seconds! Continue reading

Northern Routes – Brake Bleeding

For a short while Unsponsored had a rival on my PC, a small site that centred around providing GPS routes of mountain bike routes. The Mountain Bike mags didn’t like it much and it took a huge amount of effort to keep it going. SO dispite the support it faded away. Anyway this post is the 900th on Unsponsored and provides a little showcase of the type of stuff that was on my other site – Northernroutes.

If your brakes don’t work properly you are going to end up stacked in some ditch or tree. Maintianing your brakes is crucial for your own safety. On hydraulic brakes when you pull the lever the brake fluid is pushed and compressed through the brake line and pushes the pistons/brakepads against the brake disc. However if your brake fluid contains air then it is that which is compressed first and hence you can’t brake as well.

bleed1 Continue reading

Rio Blanco, Argentina – Substantial TV

Rio Blanco, Argentina – Substantial TV from Substantial Media House on Vimeo.

Another Published Photograph

Managed to get another kayak image published in Canoe Focus. Shot was from this years NSR.


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