The Heflins: Land, Erica, Griffin & Hazel

Tarkio Kayak Adventures is a family operated business. For the last 20+ years Land has been Tarkio’s “Everything-Man”. Erica has been in the picture since 2004 and together they carry out a variety of responsibilities. Whether it is instructing and guiding on the river, managing the accounting, communications and marketing or coordinating trip logistics, these two are taking care of it. The Heflins work hard to maintain the philosophy, lifestyle and ideals that make Tarkio Kayak Adventures the unique company and community of paddlers it has always been.

Land is a Mississippi born, second-generation river guide and has spent his life on or near rivers. His graceful paddling and intuitive river sense are products of a life spent on the water. A veteran instructor who has taught at kayak schools throughout the US, Land is always a favorite among students. His dashing smile and love of boating are ever present. He can motivate even the most-timid student to reach new paddling heights. Land’s personality and disposition create Tarkio’s present-day identity. He has a wonderful sense of humor and a comforting river demeanor that keep participants returning for more.

Land has traveled the world kayaking and has explored many rivers across the United States and Canada along with rivers in Bhutan, New Zealand, Nepal, India, Sri Lanka, Panama, Peru, Chile, Ecuador, Venezuela and Mexico. He has also spent time traveling in Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Thailand and Cambodia.

A Hood River, Oregon native, Erica has spent the majority of her life in Oregon and Montana. She is a lover of animals and children and enjoys spending her time outdoors and traveling. Prior to the Heflin’s procreating, Erica use to make it on the river for couple of Tarkio’s summer trips along with most of the international adventures. Currently she spends the majority of her time focused on Tarkio Kayak Adventures, managing the Heflin’s household and taking care of the Heflin and Tarkio Family.  Erica’s titles include: Cruise Director, Office Aficionado, Correspondence Enthusiast and “Land Management Specialist”…. get it??

Erica’s travels have taken her to Panama, Peru, Chile, Argentina, Mexico, Austria, Switzerland, Germany, Italy, Thailand, Cambodia, Bhutan, across most of the United States, British Columbia and Alberta.

Tarkio has a couple of fresh jefes on the team.  The Heflin children are amazing rays of sunshine and brighten every day. The kiddos do make it challenging to get work done but they are the best distraction ever. Both offspring enjoy floating down mellow sections of river, skiing and most of all, getting into mischief.

Griffin is into Greek mythology, enjoys Stop Motion Animation, anime, gaming and is an amazing artist.

Hazel loves gymnastics, aerial silk, riding her bike and has a unique fashion sense that involves multiple outfit changes a day.

Land and Erica continue feeling old and tired as it seems there is never a dull moment in the Heflin household thanks to the G-Money and Hazel-Beans!

The “Other” Heflin Children:  Scruffy, Sunshine, Bobby & Mimi

Constantly offering unconditional love, the canines and felines are a large part of the Heflin’s daily life.

Both Scruffy and Sunshine are rescue pooches. We can only speculate the lives they led before becoming part of the Heflin family. Though neither would be considered  a “water-dog”, both Scruffy and Sunshine enjoy rafting down mellow sections of river and camping.

The cats, Mimi and Bobby both came to the Heflin’s as kittens…. can you say “Covid-Kittens”?  Mimi and Bobby (Coconut Bob) work together to torment rodents and birds in the neighborhood. Bobby also enjoys camping and is more like a dog than a cat. RIP Bobby.

Now days the Heflin pets are living on “easy street” and are enjoying the finer things in life…and their presence is greatly appreciated.

Mimi will not be procreating! Photo and Humor Credit: Jeff LaPlume

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