Welcome to our series of profiles on our Girl Paddlers community!
We have a diverse, global community who all bring something unique to our group.
Let’s get to know them, in their own words…  

Meet Girl Paddler – Sandy – from California, USA! 

GP: Hi Sandy! Please tell us about yourself.

Sandy: Sandy Carrell I live in Anderson, Ca. Northern California. I love to Kayak and SUP.

GP: What inspired you to start paddling, and how long have you been paddling?

Sandy: I have been paddling about 10 years. Started off with a girlfriend then turned to family fun.

GP: Can you share some of your favorite paddling spots or routes and why you enjoy them?

Sandy: Whiskeytown Lake is where I call my home lake. There are so many pretty spots. I enjoy taking day trips to other lakes and even weekend trips with friends to paddle.

Lewiston Lake is beautiful, Spring Creek in Or is a fun favorite. So many lakes to explore.

GP: How do you typically plan your paddling trips, and what essentials do you always bring with you?

Sandy: I always plan with friends. That is one thing I love is to paddle with someone.

And of course my PFD. Safety first in my book.

GP: What benefits have you experienced from paddling, both physically and mentally?

Sandy: The water to me is very grounding. I love the peace I get from it.

GP: How has paddling influenced your relationship with nature, and what do you appreciate most about being out on the water?

Sandy: I would say yes for sure. Nature has always been something I love but I am not a hiker. Paddling gives me a chance to see so many beautiful areas.

GP: What advice would you give to someone who is new to paddling and looking to get started?

Sandy: Always wear a PFD. It can be the belt style or a full lifejacket. You just never know when something might happen to put you in the water.

GP: Can you describe a particularly memorable or meaningful experience you’ve had while paddling?

Sandy: So hard to pick one.. I have a wonderful group I paddle with and each time is special.

One trip we took was to explore an old train tunnel in Shasta Lake, CA.

When the Shasta Lake level goes low there is an old train tunnel that becomes visible. There are a few of them but this one you can still paddle all the way through it. Then when water continues to drop it becomes out of water. The year we got to go you only have about a month timeframe to go.

I also volunteer during summer with the Ranger at Whiskeytown Lake. I help with kayak and SUP tours. It is fun to see people learn how to paddle and the joys of it.

GP: How has your approach to paddling changed over time, and what have you learned from your experiences?

Sandy: We used to go out and basically just float. Now most paddles have at least 5 miles to them and exploring is so wonderful.

GP: Can you share any upcoming paddling adventures or goals you have in mind and what you are most looking forward to about them?*

Sandy: We have a few summer trips planned for this summer. Just friends sneaking away to paddle different lakes.

GP: Is there anything else you’d like to share? Maybe let us know what you think is missing in the world of paddling for women. What are some of the challenges you have in your paddling journey? 

Sandy: Challenges… not sure there have been many we all just go and enjoy.

GP: Thank you, Sandy! We appreciate you sharing your story with us and for supporting Girl Paddlers in California!

If you have any questions or comments for Sandy, leave a comment below.

You can also find Sandy on Instagram @lovemykayak, and in our Facebook Group: Girl Paddlers.

If you’re interested in being profiled on Girl Paddlers, please leave a comment below or email us at [email protected]


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