Like great rivers, great stories always start as headstreams somewhere, cascade down mountains, meander through valleys, then braid and unite into a single channel that builds up momentum to join the ocean of our collective history. Here at TRAK, looking back this August, we’re celebrating 10 years of a story about perseverance and paddlers, about our people and products. What we’re most proud of is that along the way we created a vehicle to unleash life, for the adventurous hearts to follow their bucket list dreams, for the new explorers to seek uncharted waters around the world and come back to discover that amazing is inside all of us.
“It starts with us, and with what’s actually inside that bag… 10 years of innovative thought, determination, service and commitment…”
Without the original inspiration (and moxie) to build the world’s best folding boat and then the only portable performance kayak that could adapt to any water, anywhere, the TRAK story wouldn’t have started. But it was that hardy Canadian staying power and a lot of patience that built the kayak, from the earliest hand-built prototypes in the 90’s to the latest TRAK ST16 models being shipped globally today. There are thousands of hours of design development, engineering, production and testing in every bag. There’s a lot of tenacity that drives the relentless pursuit of improvement and refinement; some of the smallest changes can demand huge investments but always produce the biggest difference.
Navigating the river of a company’s growth while evolving the brand and everything the World of TRAK means has been an extraordinary adventure itself. At times, it felt like we had to run rapids (and portage sometimes), paddle upstream (most of the time), walk it through the shallows (yup, not even the minimum draft for even a kayak) and even carved some gnarly surf (onto the shore). Every time the moving water settled down and the current ran deep we tracked strong and straight. Sometimes the water was so still we could see our smiles reflected in it. There’s an intimate connection we have with water (since we’re about 2/3 made of it) and only a skin-on-frame kayak gives you access to it. For those moments of stillness and timelessness, we all catch our collective breaths and realize that we’re never alone.
If you’re on this journey with us, as a TRAK owner (or loaner) or fan reading this, we want to thank you for your own unique contribution to our story. Without customers there’s no company. Without you paddling TRAK on your own water, there would be no crazy stories to tell, no amazing shots or breathtaking video or gripping adventures to share around the campfire. You have paddled with polar bears around icebergs, into dense tropical jungle, down the world’s longest navigable rivers, through monumental stone canyons, into churning Class 3 rapids, across open sea to faraway desert islands, into glowing sunsets on mirror-like silent lakes and back to your own backyards. You have pulled and rolled, dragged and stowed, driven and flown that TRAK pack to every continent on the planet. You are the amazing that’s inside our story. Thank you. Here’s to the next 10 years of adventure, with each of you!