Joe Glickman and Freya Hoffmeister

A Personal Connection with the Freya Hoffmeister Story

By Stevie McAllister

I stopped kayaking when I moved from Utah to NYC, thinking that it was not a possible sport for someone who lived in a big city.


Stevie McAllister, hiking in Arizona

Twenty years later while on vacation out west, I was wishing I had my kayak again to be out paddling some of the locations I visited. 

I came a cross the book "The Kayak Companion" in a bookstore in Montana so I could catch up on the latest info about kayaking.

I was very surprise when I started reading and read that the author Joe Glickman  spoke of paddling in his home turf of Brooklyn, NY, not far from where I lived.

This energized me, but especially when I read on about some of his paddling adventures, especially his chapter about his trip paddling from Montana to NYC lacking a lot the proper gear.It wasn't his first extreme adventure, but the one that really hit home with me.

I came home after our vacation and joined his paddling club, the Sebago Canoe Club in Canarsie Brooklyn.

I got to know Joe quite well over the years. It always seemed we were the only ones going on the water and getting off around the same times, during the off season.

Eventually I got to know Freya and really liked her. She was wild, brash and told lots of good stories and jokes. She was like one of the guys and very talented and athletic.

One day Joe told me that Freya had asked him to write a book about her circumnavigation of Australia, and from that day on it was the topic of our conversations at the club.

Anyway I like the book (Fearless) because it was real and showed a lot about the psychology of why Freya was able to do what she does.

The book was maybe too honest and maybe showed a side of Freya that many didn't want to see, but that is what made her succeed and I believe Joe wanted to show the personality of a person that could achieve such an amazing feat.

I recommend the book for people who like to read about the realities of her achievement.

Stevie McAllister

To read Yackman's review of Fearless, click here.

 © Don Yackel 2020