The Dash started in 2006, the brainchild of evil sadistic paddlers Will Robens and Don Kiesling. Their idea: Challenge racers to sprint 2.5 miles around Deception Island and into the mouth of Deception Pass, before the current gets so strong that they can’t make it all the way to Strawberry Island on the far end of the Pass. The reward for those who pull it off? The satisfaction of knowing they’ve worked that hard to get halfway home! — and a fun ride, this time with the building ebb, all the way back to the finish.
Who would possibly show up for such a thing? 39 paddlers in 35 kayaks & surfskis showed up the first year. Since then, the word has spread and 186 racers came out in 2010 - 2012, paddling SUPs, outriggers, sculls, prone paddleboards and pedalboats along with some of the same sea kayakers and surfski racers who came out in year 1.