Think Outside-Inflatable Kayak Review

We have been fortunate to experience some great adventures this year! We've hiked, road tripped, & white water kayaked. One of the best items we purchased was the K2 Explorer tandem inflatable kayak. It gets overlooked a lot in the kayaking world, but it's been our only kayak to date and we love it! After a dozen or more uses I feel like an honest review may help answer some questions regarding if it's a good deal or not.

PROS

  • It's affordable – with a price tag of $95 or less you get 2 paddles, air pump, tandem kayak, and carrying bag. Any budget can handle the K2
  • Compact storage- once deflated it can easily fit in your trunk, garage, and truck bed without taking up much space. With about 25 pounds of weight, once zipped up, makes it's manageable for any kayaker.
  • Quick Inflate– with the duel air pump included you can inflate the K2 in as little as 15 minutes.
  • Adjustable Seats– the K2 Kayak does come with 2 adjustable seats. You can easily increase or decrease your back support & remove altogether if you choose to.
  • Controlled Steering – in the K2 you can easily control your pace and direction. It comes with attachable rear fin for speed maintenance and directional control.
  • Stability– the K2 inflatable kayak has great stability! In the 12 times we have floated we haven't tipped once! This makes it safe for kids and families knowing that your personal belonging and children wont be in the water unexpectedly.
  • Durability- This is the part that shocked me! It is actually VERY durable. We have kayaked over trees, rocks and other different debris and not once has it failed us. I have complete confidence that the straps and air valves will stay intact for many more excursions.
  • Spacious – With the K2 there is a 400 LB weight limit so you can easily have 2 people or an Ice chest inside your Kayak! There is plenty of space for all of your personal belongings and it has leg room as well.

CONS

  • It is difficult to strap down if you inflate before traveling. I only recommend inflating onsite.
  • Cleaning up your kayaks can be challenging while deflated so you need to have cleaning wipes and towels ready before deflation.
  • They are lightweight so when you get to a stopping point on the water you have to make sure your kayak doesn't get swept away. Have something to tie your inflatable kayak with or carry it out of the water completely.

The K2 Explorer is a great alternative to traditional kayaks. It makes a great gift for any outdoor lover. It also serves as an emergency vessel for larger boats that may have a failure of some sort. Overall I HIGHLY recommend the K2! It's great for beginners, as well as a backup for a more experienced kayakers. Perfect to have at your lake house or beach house, for extras as well!

Click Here to pick up yours today with FREE 2 Day shipping.

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Think Outside: A Guide To Oklahoma Zip Lining

Zip lining has to be one of the greatest adventures! Nothing says thrilling like being attached to a pulley, hundreds of feet in the air, on a cable that can be over a mile in length. Zip lining is an attraction that many people have experienced throughout the world.

Before it became used by adrenaline junkies, zip lining was actually used quite often as a way to transport items or traveling. According to Oahu Zip lines, zip lining was used for centuries to cross rivers and travel over steep mountains. Many would transport food and water back to their homes using the pulleys for safer & more effective transportation. Eventually as technology became more advanced, a lot of the zip line systems were replaced with bridges. In the early 1970's, zip lining went recreational with the first ever thrill zip line. The idea was launched by scientists and ecologists using the zip lines as a way to study in the jungle. They researched animals, wildlife, and various plants by the pulley technology. A few of these scientists became the catalyst of turning this system that was used to study into a worldwide thrill business! Now with over 200 hundred recreational zip lines in North America, its one of the leading thrill rides amongst adventurers.

One of the best attractions Oklahoma has to offer is Post Oak Canapy Tours (Zip Lining)! Located just northwest of Tulsa in the beautiful Osage Hills is Post Oak Lodge & Retreat. 


Surrounded by the rolling Osage hills, POSTOAK Lodge & Retreat sits on 1,000 acres just 10 minutes from downtown Tulsa. From weekend getaways to group events, POSTOAK provides banquet space, comfortable accommodations with spacious common areas and leisure activities. The lodge offers beautiful rooms, 5 star outdoor scenery and a world class pool! A great place to take the family or have a romantic getaway. You will also have access to one of the largest zip lines in the state. 

POSTOAK Zip Line Canopy Tours takes thrill seekers soaring above the treetops along a network of more than 3,865 feet of cable line — that is longer than 10 football fields! Zip from platform to platform and enjoy a bird’s-eye view of Oklahoma’s magnificent Osage Hills and downtown Tulsa. Daredevil or not, this will be an amazing, fun and rewarding ride!


Post Oak offers several different zip times and offers private tours for corporate parties or large groups. Don't wait another minute! Call today to set up your trip of a lifetime. Click here For all the info! 

Another zip lining tour offered in Oklahoma is located in the beautiful Arbuckle Mountains! Air Donkey Zip Lines offers Davis, Ok a 2 hour canopy tour, with one cable stretching 1800 feet long! This makes Air Donkey Zip Line the longest one in Oklahoma. Located just 2 hours south of Oklahoma City and 3 hours from Tulsa, location makes this a great getaway for any thrill seeker. Click here to plan your next Adventure in southern Oklahoma.

A third zip line for all the Oklahomans and visitors is home to Beavers Bend State Park. The Rugaro Adventures offers a one of a kind experience with 6 zip lines traveling at speeds between 35 mph and 65 mph. Located next to Broken Bow lake, this gem is nestled in the breathtaking Ouchita Mountains, so you won't leave disappointed. If you want to experience Broken Bow, Ok like never before, book your next zip trip here!

What do I wear?

It's always important to check the forecast and plan accordingly. If rain looks likely there is a good chance you will have to reschedule for safety purposes.

For summer months:

  • Light weight and light colored clothing is always best. Temps get reach well over 90 degrees and it's important to wear clothing that allows your body to cool off fast!
  • Closed toe shoes are best. You will be climbing ladders and walking through some trails in order to get to certain parts of the zip lines so you want comfortable shoes with protection.
  • Sunblock! Never forget to wear sun protection while zip lining. Most areas are in full sun and offer very little shade.

For cooler months:

  • Long sleeved shirts or thin pullovers. Hoodies are NOT recommended while zip lining because the thicker material can obstruct the safety equipment.
  • Jeans or leggings will work great for cooler weather. Again nothing to bulky or thick that may cause the safety equipment to not fit properly.

Safety equipment will be provided by most canopy tours but please call to verify!

See the beautiful Oklahoma skies from a different perspective. Your next adventure is waiting for you.

Happy Zipping Oklahoma!

Adventure Playlist – Best Songs To Make Your Next Trip Legendary

Music is a powerful thing. It has the ability to change our mood, make us dance, make us laugh, or even take you back in time! Music affects all of us in a special way. Going on big adventures is always exciting, and adding music to those adventures will not only create more excitement, but will commemorate the experience. Every time you hear those songs it can take you back to an experience wherever you listen to it! That’s a powerful thing. Just think about it. You’re  at work, stressed, maybe overwhelmed, and you hear a song that played while you hiked down the Appalachian trail, or kayaking down a peaceful river with family and friends, and instantly it brings you back. You can smell the trees again, hear the water rushing, & feel the sun instantly. It’s scientifically proven to activate sensors in the brain that remind us of significant events that took place while hearing the songs over again!

According to Bebrainfit.com music can make you feel more hopeful, powerful, and in control of your life.  It will make you more productive, and allow you to complete tasks more efficiently. So if you are on a hike, rock climbing, working out, running, etc, you are more likely to go farther if you are listening to music. In a recent survey I asked a group of experienced adventurers what songs inspire them to see the world. Here are the top 5 best songs that will inspire you to reach the mountain peaks, brave the white waters, and dare to try something new:

# 5: The Phoenix – FALL OUT BOY

Watch Video


This symphonic energetic rock track will have your heart pumping and ready to tackle any adventure you embark on! Containing lyrics such as “I’m going to change you like a remix, Then I’ll raise you like a phoenix” will get you ready for any challenge that may lie ahead.

# 4: Proud Mary (Rollin on the River) – CCR

Watch Lyric Video


This song is for all the river rats that love leaving their 9-5’s on a Friday and go where their minds get lost and their souls are found. The River.  With the powerful lines such as, “If you come down to the river, Bet you gonna find some people who live, You don’t have to worry ’cause you have [if you got] no money People on the river are happy to give”, showcase the freedom that comes with a simpler life!

#3 How Far I’ll Go – Aleccia Cara

Watch Official Video


This song gives a beautiful illustration of what it’s like finding yourself through your adventures! It tells a story of overcoming fear and doubt in order to discover the most incredible things, & sometimes those incredible things happen to be part of YOU! Finding your passion and being changed from your experiences creates joy. The most encouraging line will inspire you to be brave.

“See the line where the sky meets the sea? It calls me. And no one knows, how far it goes”

Go on as many crazy adventures as life will give you, because one day you won’t be able to. Don’t let fear turn into regret.

#2 The Outsiders NEEDTOBREATHE

Watch Lyric Video


This spiritual folk track will have you embracing just how crazy you are for walking in the woods, Kayaking white waters, swinging from ropes, and living life to the fullest! Containing  lines that can sum up any experience is pretty powerful!

“On the outside, You’re free to roam,On the outside,We found a home, On the outside, There’s more to see, On the outside, We choose to be”

#1 I’m Gonna BE (Walk 500 Miles) – The Proclaimers 

Original music video (1988)


A classic karaoke hit that everybody has been belting out since 1988! This catchy tune has been an adventurers favorite. The song was written by the Scottish duo waiting on a train to get to their next gig. With energetic rhythms, upbeat pace, and unforgettable lyrics, you are sure to be inspired. Hike your next destination to the “But I would walk five hundred miles, And I would walk five hundred more, Just to be the man who walked a thousand miles, To fall down at your door.”

Be sure to download these songs to your adventure playlists and have a great time making memories to look back on for years to come! Click Here to download the Amazon music app to create your own playlist for free! 

Caitie Brown

Lower Mountain Fork*White Water Kayaking Trip 2017

Everybody talks about it! Is it really worth the hype? YES! Located in Broken Bow, OK right off of HW 70 you will find white water rapids just waiting on YOU! Not only will you be surrounded by the beautiful Ouchita Mountains, Broken Bow Lake, supreme luxury cabins, and clear trout water; you will also be surrounded by the best float trip companies in the state. River Rats Kayak rental gave us first class treatment with a private remote campground located 11 miles from the float launch. Provided us a shuttle to and from the camping ground with our Kayak rental at a reasonable price! Highly recommend giving them a call at  (580) 584-6225 to plan your unforgettable float trip! Click here To find out more! 
We launched our trip at about 9 AM. The water was moving at about 800 cubic feet per second with the height around 2.65 feet. It was perfect kayaking conditions and you could hear the white waters roaring in the distance. At our first Fork the water was rushing steadily and we realized quickly this was not going to be a float trip we could sit back and relax on! The rapids are class 2 rapids and when you’ve never kayaked white water before this can be intimidating! We ended up stuck on a few boulders and with this river heavily kayaked we always found someone willing to give us a push while laughing hysterically! Kayakers are some of the best people I know! The first mile is pretty much all white Water with a few breaks to get ready for the Presbyterian Falls located at the end of the 1 mile marker. It is a 3 foot water drop off you HAVE to be prepared for! If not be prepared to flip and lose some valuables! It’s worth every thrilling scream! 

After you drop down the falls you go on a relaxing 3 mile float surrounded by beautiful trees and mountains! After the 4 mile takeout you will continue rowing the next 7 miles. The river is full of surprises! So many turns with unexpected waters! Some are slow and relaxing, others are quick and exciting. It will be wide open surrounded by cabins one minute, then narrow flowing through the forest the next. A beautiful river that displays everything Oklahoma is known for. 

Check out our full video Here

Below is all the links to everything you need to plan your amazing float trip! 

Trip Information

*Campgrounds with Kayak rental/shuttle – River Rats Kayak Rentals 

Website 

http://www.river-rats-canoe-rentals.com/

Professional Photographer 

http://www.brokenbowadventurephotos.com/

Cabins

https://www.riverbankcabins.com/

Happy Kayaking! 


Caitie Brown


Debt Free since 2015, Now what?!

Well today was a big step in conquering the next goal. There is power behind putting a goal on paper and writing a plan to achieve it! There is a famous quote:

Vision without action is merely a dream. Action without vision just passes the time. Vision with action can change the world. Joel A. Barker 

When debt freedom was conquered in December 2015 not a lot changed from the outside. We still drive the same paid for cars that have high mileage. We still live in our little house with constant repairs needed, and we still don’t have cable! However, it’s the stuff that really matters that has changed the most. We have retirement accounts that are growing, stress levels have decreased, our marriage is stronger and we started a new plumbing company that is also growing debt free! We are able to take risk and have more  fun because the constant worry of making payments is gone. When you become debt free by working hard and making sacrifices, its not just a goal you’re trying to achieve, it’s a life you’re forever changing. We are not going back. Now that we are debt free the next big goal is being achieved as I am writing! By nature I’m a free spirit. I love to spend money on travel and new experiences so saving money is difficult for me. I feel a lot of adventurous people struggle with this. You see an opportunity of a lifetime waiting for you and you say YES without hesitation. It makes for an exciting present  but can cause a stressful future. Finding a balance between living for today and preparing for tomorrow can give you the best of both worlds! Setting this goal will not only prepare us for the future but will provide us the ability to make a lot of memories for many years stress free! 

Goal: PAYING CASH FOR MY NEXT CAR 


YEP! Along with building a business, giving to our church, and cash flowing all of life’s expenses we started saving for our next BIG PURCHASE: A car! Never in a million years did I think I could do that, but as it turns out I can. We paid off $35,000 in 18 months. There is nothing stopping us from being able to do that except us. So today we decided to put the goal on paper and make a plan. We opened a locked savings account that can only be accessible to us in June 2018. Our emergency savings is in a separate account where we can easily access the funds when needed.    Each month we are putting back anything extra not used for bills and groceries. According to US Money the average financing fees for a $34,000 car is $2,800, plus 6% interest over 60 months. That’s another $5,000 plus in interest. Paying cash saves you thousands! It also saves you the stress of a car payment, and eliminates the risk of ever being upside down. Paying cash is not going to be easy and I know moments will come that will make us want to quit, but the great thing about becoming debt free is knowing you have what it takes. This time next year I will be driving my family through a trail to our next big adventure in a paid for vehicle. Nothing can beat that. Being able to plan for the future and still live out my passion is a huge blessing. God created us to live for him not for paydays, and the moment you decide to start living for him is the moment that changes everything. Living a true adventurous life can only be lived by the free. The best experiences are the ones where you only take the memories with you, not the installment. Start truly living today!

Find out how you can live an adventurous life debt free Here

Life is Better with F.R.I.E.N.D.S. 


One of my greatest gifts that God has given me is the gift of friendship! I have been blessed with many different friendships throughout my life. Some friends I have had for 20 years, some I’ve had for 20 minutes, but they all have a sweet spot in my heart. They all have influenced me to become the person I am today. 
I have discovered over the years the people who are daring, fearless, and adventurous make the best kind of friends. The friends that you experience life with are the people who shape your future. This is why high school friendships are so impactful! You go through a lot of life change in high school and you share those experiences with each other and it makes memories that last forever! You get your first car in high school, some of the students get their first job! In high school you start dating, so you share first love, first kisses, and other things (wink, wink). Some of us experience our first heartbreak in high school, whether it’s from a breakup, vicious bullies, or even loss of life! We rebel in high school, break rules and some of us will experience our first handcuffing. It’s definitely an adventurous time of life full of change and bonding. Some of those friendships will last forever, others will only be for a season, but all of them stay in our hearts. 

As we get older, it’s harder to find friends. We have more responsibility and it’s difficult to find time to nurture those relationships. It’s more important to have friends as adults because you will NEED them. You need good friends that will help you create a great life, encourage you to start that business, pray with you, help you raise your kids, and laugh with. When you find people willing to stand behind every crazy idea you have, you find your 2nd family. Only this family is the family you choose, not the family that’s assigned to you!    Real friendhips are developed through transparency. If you can just be honest and show people your passions, your weaknesses, and your strengths, and they still want to be around you… BOOM! You’ve got the real friends. Make time for them. Baby sit for them. Call them, and let them know they matter. Cherish them. Friends are so important! 

Your success in life has a lot to do with who you choose to hang around with. Choose people who will make your life memorable! 
Caitie Brown

*Salt Creek Kayaking Trip*

Making memories with friends and family is priceless! When you look back on your life you won’t always remember the things you bought, but you will always remember the experiences You had. I got to experience the coolest kayaking trip not a lot of people will get to experience. Salt Creek is a beautiful canal in between Dripping Springs Lake and Lake Okmulgee. It’s about 3.5 miles long and has almost no current. It’s shaded with trees that cover the entire canal through parts of the creek. Its lined with beautiful rock formations and wild flowers. It has plenty of areas to pull off and eat, fish or just relax. 


You will be blown away at how quiet and serene the waters are! For a moment the water was so still it reflected the trees like a mirror. Salt Creek is Surrounded by Dripping Springs State Park, so there are plenty of camping areas, hiking trails, and swimming holes. 

In order to float the Creek you will need your own kayak, and there is no motorized boats allowed on the creek since it is not patrolled by the local park ranger, and you can get fined if you attempt to ride a jet ski or bass boat. It’s perfect for kayaking. 

There are 2 ways you can float the creek: one way or out and back. You can start at the dam and kayak to Hickory Point (Lake Okmulgee) leave a vehicle there to take out or you can Kayak out and back in. There is no current so it’s an easy out and back Trip. It’s about 4.5 miles from the dam to hickory point. 

LOCATION

Salt Creek is located on the east side of Dripping Springs dam. Instead of entering the park, continue down toward the lake’s dam on S 150 RD to the put-in at the base of the lake dam. The Put-in is not far down S 150 RD. look for a little circle pull-in opposite of a high grassy hill on the other side of the road. That grassy hill is the dam for Dripping Springs Lake.


Be sure to share this with your fellow Kayaking friends, and plan your trip today! Located just 45 minutes from Tulsa and 2 hours from Oklahoma City. A kayakers paradise awaits. Happy Paddling! 
Caitie Brown

Farmers Markets: Think Outside your Grocery Store

It’s that time of year again! Saturday Morning Farmers markets are in full swing, & not only is it important to your health, it’s important for your community as well. Farmers Markets are physical retail stores featuring foods produced by the farmer and sold directly to the consumer. This platform has sustained throughout history and has become increasingly popular since early 2000’s. Technology advancements and modern industrialization has made food growth faster, cheaper, & bigger! Therefore major retailers such as Walmart and Target provide 90% of Americans their food, and 60% of that food is processed. Families are eating out, instead of at the table, and our wellness is becoming less of a priority.

 Farmers Markets are a great asset to you, your community and your family! The food is fresh so not only is the flavor at its fullest so is the nutritional value. With local farmers, Seasonal produce is fun to enjoy in the season they were intended to flourish. Supporting local farmers is great for the economy and the environment. Shipping goods is quite expensive and can cause a strain on the environment. With farmers Markets the shipping costs are minimal and with each community holding their own Market, farmers are traveling less. It’s a win win for the farmer and the consumer! Also, Knowing where your food comes from is priceless. At the farmers Markets you can get answers from the source. It helps keep families engaged in what they are eating, and increasing your ability to make healthful choices when it comes to shopping. Sorry folks, Little Debbie hasn’t been seen at any of them farmers Markets I have been at. Start connecting with your community and start making your food choices a priority! Click here to find all your local Farmers Markets! 

Caitie Brown

Our EPIC Cross Country Road Trip

This week marks 1 year of the amazing Road Trip from Myrtle Beach, SC to Broken Arrow, Ok. It all started with a military family being reunited after 2 months, one way tickets and a road trip home. Camping out along the way, we saw  the beautiful ocean from Myrtle Beach, sweet breezes from Cape Fear, Moonshine sips in Tennessee, and the soul of Memphis. It will inspire you beyond your imagination. Traveling is the best way to find out who you are. It awakens the soul, expands our minds, and ignites the fire that burns a purpose in your life. Here is a little throw back to an amazing trip half way across the country.

STARTING POINT ~ Fort Jackson, SC

One of the largest military bases in the country is Fort Jackson, SC. Located just east of Columbia, SC and it is known for its basic training and drill sgt academy. About 45 minutes away is Sumter! Sumter is named after General Thomas Sumter from the American Revolutionary War. Sumter is rich in history and we were blessed to get to see the gravesites of the Generals family! 



Destination #2~Myrtle Beach

Just an hour and half drive east is the beautiful, over populated with tourism, Myrtle Beach.  You will get lost on the white sand & ocean air. This beach is definitely a different style compared to the south beaches,  & California beaches. It’s the ocean mixed with Kenny Chesney & Luke Bryan. It has that southern/down home feeling without any over the top pet snakes and alligators… this was my kinda place! The food was amazing and complete with zip lines , a ferries wheel, and bike rentals, there is something for everybody.  We camped out just 3 blocks away at the Myrtle Beach KOA. It came with a water park for Caidon, showers, and bathrooms plus shuttle service to and from the boardwalk! Highly recommend to everyone! 



Destination #3~Cape Fear (Wilmington, NC) 

The drive along the coast northbound was amazing! Seeing the historical plantation homes made me feel like I was in the making of “THE NOTEBOOK”. The artsy atmosphere in Wilmington and historical boat rides across the cape makes for the most romantic getaway! 



Destination # 3 ~ Ashville, NC

From ocean in the morning to Mountains by sunset!  I am partial to the mountains, but the Smokey Mountains are a sight to see! The beautiful haze over the valleys calls my name every time. The endless adventures throughout the rolling hills, and scenery for days, will make you wanna live life like there’s no tomorrow! 


After our beautiful drive through Smokey Mountain National Park we made our way into Tennessee. Just past the state line is a little town called Hartford, TN. It’s home to bootleggers Moonshine! You cannot go to Tennessee without getting homegrown moonshine, because it’s the only souvenir worth taking home. The greatest thing about this area are the people. Even though the scenery is breathtaking, and the adventures are unforgettable, it’s the people that make your experiences sweeter.


Destination # 4~Memphis, TN

After lunch in Nashville, we made our way into Memphis, TN. Home of Elvis Presley and the Blues! What shocked me most was how run down Memphis seemed to be. Vacant buildings everywhere, graffiti art on abandoned homes, homeless people on the bridges, and trash in the Ole Mississippi River. It was dark and desolate. Not the image I had in my mind. We set up camp at the Maron, AR KOA just 12 miles outside of Memphis. We met a musician who played electric guitar, & a factory worker staying there on the nights he worked to be closer so his bike commute wasn’t so long. The next morning we packed up and headed to Graceland! The Elvis Presley mansion & museum. The haunting home was left exactly as he left it. Shag carpet, dingy wallpaper, 70’s appliances and televisions. It was neat to literally walk into a completely different era.  He was truly the king of rock n roll. 

After 4 days of our adventure road trip we were finally just 6 hours from home! There is no place like home. Our family was ready to be home together after 2 months away from each other. The road trip was amazing! $700 plane tickets, $300 SUV rental, $250 for camping, and $120 in gas, we made it half way across the country with a 3 year old and didn’t die. Well worth it! Time traveling is never time wasted. Do it as often as you possibly can. 

Kayaking Bluff Landing~Broken Arrow, Ok

Getting on the water is one of the best feelings. Rivers hold a bit more adventure with all the different turns and currents. The rivers are what make Oklahoma unique, and if you live here you probably are within 30 miles of an incredible river!  Bluff Landing, located in Broken Arrow/ Coweta, is peaceful and serene!
 The first half our Kayak we paddled against the current which wasn’t that bad at all! We paddled for about a mile and headed into Adams Creek. Adams creek goes on for miles, but you can sit steady under Lone Star road and relax or eat lunch etc. Then you can head right back to Bluff Landing or continue on. It took us about an hour to get to Lone Star Bridge (it is out once it hits the creek), then we floated with the current all the way back! Its really an amazing place to Kayak! We saw plenty of snakes and turtles, plus the white cranes flew around us all day! 


We have been fortunate enough to be able to Kayak several places in NE Oklahoma, but this is just 15 minutes from the Heart of Broken Arrow, Ok, and is big enough to fill an entire day with adventure. There is a great boat dock, and ramp along with restrooms and camping grounds. The kids will have a blast on the water and have access to a playground. This is also a popular fishing hole where  gar, crappie, and catfish are caught on a regular basis. Come check out this hidden gem! 

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