John Pedersen


John Pedersen

John Pedersen from Ilulissat Greenland was very well received last year and made this comment upon retuning to Greenland “I also noticed that Rolling at this Delmarva was not emphasised as much as last time I was here. I remember saying to my countrymen when I returned from the US in 2008: "The only thing they are focusing on is rolling, and not paddling, and they are much better rollers than us.......but lousy paddlers". So we we immediately asked him back to continue his teaching. Thanks to John we are getting a lot better. The class schedule will be posted closer to the event, but Mike Hamilton is already planning on using John to train Mentors on Thursday. John is an officer with Qaannat Kattuffiat.


Kiliii Yuyan

This year we are pleased to host Kiliii Yuyan. He will be giving an evening presentation about the Iñupiat on the North Slope of Alaska, where traditional skinboats (umiaqs) are still used to conduct the sacred bowhead whale hunt and subsistence hunting is still the way of life. You can see an intro to the whaling segment here:


Kiliii is an Indigenous (Nanai) photographer documenting wilderness and Native peoples and a Traditional kayak-builder. When not working for National Geographic he can be found building kayaks at Seawolf Kayak. Kiliii is coming to us after completing a SOF class with the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum.


Special Guest Eiichi Ito from QajaqJPN

Eiichi lives in Japan and is the founder of QajaqJPN and current President. He started paddling the Greenland style with a friend, Mr. Tanaka, in 1999. The Greenland style was not popular in Japan, and had not spread at all. They founded the club and invited experts from overseas every year. Although there were only two members at first, there are now 70 members because of their efforts. They finally received recognition as a Qaannat Kattuffiat official club last year. They were honored to have seven kayakers from Greenland visit their club this year as part of the evolving of the Greenland style in Japan. We expect several other members of QajaqJPN to be joining him.

In Eiichi’s own words: "I am a great believer in luck and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it." The President of your country said this, right? I like this wise saying. We would like to spread the Greenland style in the world more in cooperation with you! I appreciate the invitation to Delmarva Paddler's Retreat to you! Thanks a lot! See you in Delmarva! ;-)"


christopher crowhurst
Christopher Crowhurst

Christopher Crowhurst won't be able to return to the 2016 Delmarva Paddler's Retreat in his role as the Event Coordinator for Qajaq USA. Family always comes first, but we hope to see him back next year. His passion and dedication to Greenland style kayaking has been a real asset to all of us who share Qajaq USA sanctioning at our events.

Christopher Crowhurst is slightly obsessed with Greenland Rolling, an ex-pat Britt now living in Minnesota USA. In 2010 he founded Qajaq Rolls, a philanthropic business that promotes the passing on the traditional art of Greenland style kayak (qajaq) rolling. Christopher has developed video, diagrams and written instruction to help paddlers learn the traditional Greenland rolls. During 2010 he self-published Rolling with Sticks a waterproof guide book of twenty five Greenland style rolls, and followed this up with a companion DVD. In 2011 he used the business to establish and fund a program of free rolling clinics providing hands on training for paddlers looking to develop their Greenland style kayak rolls. This past year has seen Christopher focused on the promotion of Greenland style kayak building through the development of a simple yet elegant stitch and glue kayak, the Shrike, based upon the Disko Bay region qajaqs. You can contact Christopher through his website or


James Manke

James Manke is passionate Greenland kayaker local to Victoria, British Columbia. He is the founder of All Things Qajaq and travels internationally teaching Greenland kayak rolling. He was recently the guest lecturer at Super GUTS in Japan. Next up Chile late October 2013. As an active member of The Hurricane Riders, James spends most of his time rough water paddling and kayak surfing the West Coast of Canada. On a good flood you'll find him in the tidal rapids of Skookumchuck narrows surfing the notorious green wave with a stick. He recently paddled The Grand Canyon in a fully loaded sea kayak with a Greenland paddle. Although very passionate about the wild side of the sea, James finds peace and balance through Greenland rolling in both calm and rough waters. For more information, you can visit his website at


helen wilson
Helen Wilson

Helen Wilson is a traditional sea kayaker out of Arcata, California. She competed in the Greenland National Kayaking Championship in 2008 (Qaqortoq, Greenland) and again in 2010 (Nuuk, Greenland), receiving five medals in four disciplines. In August 2012 Helen and her husband, Mark Tozer, returned to Greenland to host an expedition of the east coast. Helen does demonstrations, presentations and provides instruction at events worldwide. She has written skills articles for several publications including Sea Kayaker magazine, The Masik and Ocean Paddler magazine. In May 1010 she released an instructional DVD, Simplifying the Roll with Helen Wilson, which is available worldwide. This September her and Mark released a second DVD, Yoga for Outdoor People. She also serves as a board advisor for Qajaq USA. Besides from being a kayaker, Helen’s other passion is yoga. She is a registered yoga teacher, and enjoys adding yoga to all of her programs. For more on Helen, visit



Dympna Hayes

Dympna Hayes is a passionate Greenland paddler and Paddle Canada instructor trainer living in Parry Sound Ontario, Canada. As co-founder of Ontario Greenland camp, Canada's largest traditional paddling event, she is responsible for encouraging Canadian paddlers of all ages and levels of skill to succeed with the traditional Greenland paddle. Dympna is happiest on the water teaching new paddlers and does so as co-owner of Ontario Sea Kayak Centre with one of the many courses, events or trips she runs each year alongside her husband James Roberts.




James Roberts

James Roberts was born on an English Isle that is only 26 X 13 miles. Water has always been and will always be in his life. Currently living near the shores of Georgian Bay and working full time as a sea kayaking instructor, wilderness guide and as co-owner of Ontario sea kayak centre. James has been paddling with a stick for 8 years and loves getting people rolling with a stick. He has an addiction to the Ocean and surf and makes annual pilgrimages to find it.




chris Cunningham
Christopher Cunningham

We are afraid we have to announce that Chris will not be able to be with us this year. Business must come first, this we understand, but we will still miss him.