The 2017 5th Annual TC Surfski Immersion Vacation

Critical Update:  Oscar Chalupsky, 12x Molokai World Surfski Champion, will be joining us for the full three days of Surfski Immersion this year.   Oscar has coached paddlers all over the world and is widely regarded as the best big ocean paddler of all time.   He is also a consummate student of technique and brings unprecedented passion to coaching new paddlers.    The core agenda will remain as planned and the four coaches will all be working along with Oscar providing a high coach to student ratio

June 1nd – 4th 2017

New for 2017:  The Saturday AM race will not be available this year.  To supplement we have added a session on dryland training  including a strength and conditioning overview  and functional movement, flexibility, posture assessment.   Additionally we will present an overview of nutrition, supplements, and tools to optimize YOUR health and performance

The Concept:  TC Surfski was looking for a great way to kick off each new surfski race season and we concluded that what could be better than bringing a  great group of both beginner and experienced paddlers together for an intense but fun four days of paddling in a luxurious lodge surrounded by beautiful water.   Our goals with this camp are to showcase the phenomenal paddling in Northern Michigan,  get new paddlers off to a great start to their season, provide an opportunity for experienced paddlers to assess and tweak their technique, and just have an overall great time building the paddling community.


Rob Hartman from Holland, MI will be one of our lead instructors.   Rob is one of the best and most experienced surfski paddlers in the US.   In the late 90s he competed on the US Canoe and Kayak Team.   Even with a full time job and family of five,  Rob continues to perform at elite levels.   In the fall of 2014 he competed in the K2 Marathon World Cup in OKC and took home a bronze medal.

Erik Borgnes will also be joining us as a lead instructor, to share his passion for surfski paddling.   Erik is a member of the Epic Kayaks US Surfski team and has been racing surfskis for over 13 years.  Erik has competed in several international surfski competitions and has written some of the best boat reviews and training articles on the web.    Click here to read more details on Erik’s impressive history as a competitive multi-sport athlete.

Greg Greene will  be joining us this year as an assistant instructor.   Greg brings a wealth of paddling knowledge from paddling and racing surfskis all over the country for the past 10 years.   Greg has competed in the US Surfski Champs on multiple occasions and has spent time paddling all over the Upper Midwest as well as Hawaii and California.    His passion and excitement for surfski paddling is absolutely contagious.    Greg is also an elite cross country skier who may very well hold a record for the longest most consistent reign as an Elite Wave skier.   As he approaches 60, Greg is an awesome example and inspiration for how well we can all perform by keeping a positive attitude, training smart and eating well.

Nick Murray will be coaching  in between organization and shuttling paddlers.   Nick has been paddling surfskis for 10 years and racing for the past 5, with several top 5 finishes at the M22 Challenge.  Nick has now had the opportunity to attend multiple Oscar Chalupsky paddling clinics and has spent time paddling tandems with both Oscar Chalupsky and Greg Barton.   In 2014 Nick completed the iconic  32 mile Molokai Challenge  and had the opportunity to spend 9 days in Hawaii paddling with the world’s best!

Accommodations: As luck would have it, right next to the TC Surfski shop sits the Hilltop Log Lodge.   This is a beautiful and truly one of a kind 7000 sq foot log lodge that sleeps up to 14.   The lodge itself is 100% first class luxury and has some of the best views in Northern Michigan.    This will serve as our “base of operations”.   More details are provided below.
New in 2017: To accommodate demand, we are also now offering lodging in Leelanau 360, the house right next door to the lodge
hilltop log lodge


  • Pizza and Salad will be provided for dinner on Thursday night
  • Deli sandwiches and snack will be provided for lunch on Friday
  • A potluck style group dinner will be held on Saturday night
  • Please plan to bring your own food, snacks, and drinks as needed.  The lodge is fully stocked with a gourmet kitchen and grill.


  • Thursday Evening:  Casual group paddle on West Bay in front of the Lodge  with a chance for the coaches to do an initial assessment of the group, meet everyone, and generally just get out and get loose after a day of travel
  • Friday Morning:  Rather than having a long dry land instructional period in the morning,  we’ll start at the lodge with coffee and about 45 minutes of instruction, paddle setup, boat setup, etc..    We’ll then head to Nedows Bay Beach on North Lake Leelanau where we’ll do a little more dryland instruction, then hit the water.   We will have an iPad for video with a focus on taking video and providing immediate feedback.   Additionally each paddler will paddle with a coach directly behind them coaching and giving feedback.
  • Friday Afternoon: The Friday afternoon session will be all about safety.   We introduced this session 2 years ago and not only had a ton of fun, but everyone learned a lot.  It is an absolutely critical session to ensure we all develop the necessary skills to self rescue on the water.   The afternoon safety session will include instruction along with some fun group and solo competitions involving rescue.   It is required that you bring clothing for immersion in Lake Michigan.   To be safe, this is 3 mm neoprene, with booties, gloves, and a hoodie.
  • Note:  If the waves are up on Friday afternoon, we will consider splitting up the group so that the intermediate/advanced paddlers can go out for  downwind paddle.   There are some great short hike options with spectacular views for anyone who wants to explore the Leland area.
  • Saturday Morning: Strength and conditioning presentation and basic functional movement assessment of each of the padders.  This will be provided by Ian Cardenas of North Bay Fit who has been my trainer for the past year and a half.    Following this session Nick will present an overview on diet, nutrition, tools and supplements.   The goal of this session is to provide a roadmap to help you find the optimal diet and supplementation plan for YOU.  We will not focus on a single diet approach and are not selling any supplements, rather provide the tools to help you discover what is best for you.
  • Saturday Afternoon:  We’ll head back up to Leland in search of waves on Lake Michigan.  The beginners will do out and back paddles from the beach.   The intermediate/advanced paddlers will be shuttled for a downwind if conditions permit.    If there is no wind and waves, we will line up a ski boat on North Lake Leelanau to surf behind
  • Saturday Early Evening:  Forward stroke and downwind video technique analysis at the lodge with beers.

Special Offer – V7 Rental for M22

  • We will offer a packaged price that will include the immersion camp, along with a V7 surfski and paddle rental for the camp, as well as the V7 and paddle rental on race day the following weekend.    If you want to significantly improve your time and finishing place at M22,  this is the option for you.   We estimate that if you’ve been paddling a typical rental or SUP and sign up for this total package, you will take 5-10 minutes off of your paddle time.

15% Off all Gear and Accessories for Camp Participants

Detailed Schedule

Thursday Afternoon / Evening

  • 6:00 – 7:30 pm    “Loosen up” paddle at Lee Point Beach  (just 2 miles from the lodge)
  • 8:00 – 10:00 pm Meet and greet at the lodge (Pizza and Salad provided)


  • 8:00 – 9:30    Coffee at the lodge and paddle length setup, grip taping, etc..
  • 10:30-12:30   Flat water technique session (Nedows Bay Beach )
  • 12:30 – 2:00   Break for lunch (sandwiches provided)
  • 2:00 – 4:00     Safety Session with team and individual competitions (Nedows Bay Beach)
  • 4:00 –  6:00    Surfing Lake Michigan, Hiking Leland, etc..
  • 6:30-10:00     On your own for dinner


  • 8:30-10:15       Race Across the Bay
  • 10:30 – 12:00  Diets, supplements, tools
  • 12:00 – 1:00    Lunch
  • 1:30 – 4:30      Downwind Session on  Lake Michigan (Van’s Beach, Leland)
  • 5:30 – 7:00      Video review at the lodge (video taken during the camp and also video of pros)

Paddle Options:

  • West Bay – Hilltop / Lee Point – 2 minutes from lodge
  • North Lake Leelanau  20 minutes from lodge
  • Leland (open lake Michigan) – 20 minutes from lodge


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