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About Us


Paddle Sports Centers are owned and operated by Channel Islands Outfitters (CIO)


In the early 1990s Paddle Sports of Santa Barbara opened up on lower State Street in downtown Santa Barbara. For the first 15 years, Paddle Sports sold and rented kayaks and equipment. When the building we were in was torn down to put in a parking garage (which still hasn't happend yet) in 2002, we moved our operations to the SB Harbor. In 2005 we expanded to Santa Claus Lane with a 3,000 square foot retail shop. However, when the financial system took a nose dive in late 2008, we were forced to reevaluate our business model in order to survive. By 2010 we formed Channel Islands Outfitters INC around the purpose of saving the oceans. This came about after much contemplation and soul searching as we did not want to be in business only for the sake of profiting, we wanted something greater... a purpose. And so we have worked to create a modern business that embraces community and stewardship while providing a service that is convenient, affordable, and quite honestly... something we would use if we didn't own the company. Now, 5 years into our remodeled business, we continue to offer the highest quality service at an affordable price while working to make the world a better place to live.

Visit our CIO website: www.channelislandso.com

Membership Explained


Think of us as your outdoor fitness club. We saw many obstacles for people looking to get into paddling, so we created this club to offer access at an affordable rate.

When you pay your one-time sign-up fee of $49 you become a member of the club. Nothing else is required of you. You get club pricing, benefits, and a sense of community.  If you want access to our facilities on a daily basis, you can pay fitness dues.

Members who pay dues receive convenient and affordable access to paddle sports equipment ( KAYAK | SUP | SURF ). We have removed the obstacles to using this bulky gear so that you can get on the water quickly and easily in Santa Barbara and Goleta Beach. The Co-Op allow members to progress at their own level, while having the extra benefit of profession instructors. We have lockers, filtered water, and towel service, not to mention a hot shower on chilly days! Come down to the Paddle Sports Center and learn about what we can offer.

Member Benefits:

  • Special rates (50% off walk-in rates)
  • 10% OFF on ALL CIO Adventures & Courses for you and guests.
  • 10% rewards on all Paddle Sports Center eligible spending (just like REI)
  • Social events
  • Access with current dues paid

Just a one-time fee of $49

 

LEARN MORE

*If you are signing up for the Adventure Co-Op to receive a 10% discount on your adventure, please call our office after signing-up to finish your reservation 805-899-4925. Thanks!

Meet CIO, a family of outdoor professionals.

CIO is an employee owned and operated adventure company!

logo-certifiedIn 2013, CIO officially became a certified For-Benefit Corporation. Certified B Corporations are leading a global movement to redefine success in business. By voluntarily meeting higher standards of transparency, accountability, and performance, Certified B Corps are distinguishing themselves in a cluttered marketplace by offering a positive vision of a better way to do business. We adhere to the triple bottom line principals, and recognize that our employees are the face and heart of our organization.



Since 2013, CIO has been an accredited ASI SUP School.

2013 Impact Assessment

Becoming a B-1


Learning to do good was as difficult as it was fun. Understanding the need to mesh our passion about the natural world into business just made sense…

 

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Meet Our Staff

 

With a career centered around inspiring appreciation of the environment through developing and supporting innovative businesses that build a better world, Fraser’s love of nature has been woven through all facets of his life. Fraser grew up in and on vastly different waters around the country. Summers spent on the Gulf of Mexico and winters in the North Atlantic. Fraser worked as a lifeguard for 5 seasons. He coached swimming, lacrosse, and CPR/First-Aid courses throughout that time as well. He landed in Santa Barbara mid-way through college, and working as a kayak guide seemed to be the next logical fit. After 4 seasons guiding in the Channel Islands National Park, Fraser explored the idea of making a large-scale positive environmental impact by taking a position with ECOBAGS as the VP of Business Development, started his own consulting business focusing on sustainable development. When preparing to begin graduate school, Fraser received a message to journey to Peru, living in and exploring the Amazon.

In 2010, The Channel Islands called Fraser to return and reconnect, since then he has been happy to lead people through one of the most remarkable places on Earth. Fraser co-founded Channel Islands Outfitters with Garrett Kababik. In 2014 Fraser was certified by the Academy of Surfing Instructors to train stand-up paddle board instructors. During this time he worked to certify Channel Islands Outfitters as an accredited Academy of Surfing Instructors and Stand-Up Paddle board (SUP) school. Channel Islands Outfitters is a guide-owned and operated company dedicated to saving the oceans and natural places by fostering an understanding of them through education, adventures and outdoor experiences.

I have always found incredible joy and serenity in the water. My first job at the age of 13 was a river guide in Pennsylvania on the Delaware Water Gap. Since then I have enjoyed canoeing, river kayaking, sea kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, surfing, prone paddling, and swimming. In 2004 I graduated from The University of New Hampshire with a degree in Recreational Management - Business Administration. I began working for Paddle Sports of Santa Barbara that next summer as the Program Director. After 5 years of managing Channel Islands kayaking trips I left the Pacific Ocean and went on a 2,183 mile backpacking journey from Georgia to Maine on the Appalachian Trail. After 6 months of walking along the Eastern Seaboard, I returned to California and soon after joined up with co-founders Fraser and JD to embark on a business journey in Channel Islands Outfitters. 
I have been a fish for as long as I can remember. I was born and raised in Oceanside, San Diego where I spent every summer day at the beach. Swimming and playing water polo in high school guided me to my first lifeguard job on Camp Pendleton. When it came time to choose a college, UCSB was indisputable. After one visit, I fell in love with all the college had to offer, not to mention the beautiful beach surroundings. By my junior year, my itch for traveling had kicked in leading me across the world to explore the beaches of Australia. I came to CIO after graduating from UCSB and knew I had met a new family. After a year of working and playing with CIO, Australia called me back. I traveled again for a year and upon returning to the US, returned to CIO as well. Since then many new adventures have called, but Santa Barbara will always be my home.
Wind, sky, fire, waves, earth and tree, in the mountains and sea is where I'll be. I started as a little sprout growing up in the coastal woods of New England and playing in the chilly Atlantic waters off Northeast Massachusetts. Winters skiing in the White Mountains and summers spent in the islands of Maine, on Martha's Vineyard and on trips to visit family in California College beckoned like a siren call to the west coast and Santa Barbara connected me to a whole new diversity of ocean and mountain living and further groomed my appreciation and desire to protect the precious environment that most take for granted. The UCSB Environmental Studies program sent me out to the Channel Islands for multiple adventures and habitat restoration projects and cemented my interest in island ecology and biogeography. In 2000, a Wildland Studies program furthered that island love with 10 weeks backpacking the mountain trails and snorkeling the waters of the Big Island, Maui and Kauai. After some unfulfilling years working in a cubicle, I joined CIO in January of 2015 on a hope and a whim to work for company that truly practices everything I stand for and to help bring the passion I have for our planet to the next generation.
Sofia was born and raised in Half Moon Bay, California where her whole life was centered on the presence of the vast ocean. Because the sea was pretty much her own backyard, Sofia’s childhood was spent at the beach. Her schooling growing up emphasized the importance of our actions impact on the environment and provided countless experiences like natural habitat restoration and beach clean ups. She watched surfers from all over the world test the humbling Northern California waters in preparation for the Mavericks surf competition. Eager to move to the warmer waves of sunny Santa Barbara so she could remain close to her salty home, Sofia spent four years studying psychology at UCSB. She began to realize what she’d always known, which is that there is a vital relationship between how we treat ourselves and how we treat our environment and much of our mental health is linked to remembering to reconnect with nature. Joining the CIO family seemed like such a natural fit after college as she continued to share her passion for the sea. Staying aware of the natural environment and young at heart playing in the waves, Sofia hopes to live her life being the change she wishes to see in the world and facilitate as many positive experiences with the ocean as possible.
This Mermaid was born from the ocean to spread the word to us land folk about the troubles at Sea with human made pollution. But before this purpose was bestowed upon her, she was set in motion to travel the world with her scientist parents, and adventure seeking father. By the time SparKle made it to Santa Barbara at the age of 19, she had lived in 3 different continents (Australia, Europe, North America) and rode horses professionally in Ireland. She speaks French and a bit of Spanglish, has an extensive knowledge of almost every religion, can wrangle a Zebra, and makes the most amazing purple soup EVER. Through the early adventures sparked by a inherited thirsty spirit of exploration, she realized her passion for educating children about science and the health of the Ocean. In her post University endeavors, Kaia climbed her way with zeal to take the Executive Director role at Save the Mermaids, a non-profit organization established by college friends in the early 2010's. Still with land legs, this Mermaid walks tall for ocean health.
There is not a time in his life that Mike cannot recall being around water. Mike came to Santa Barbara in 2003 to attend UCSB, and a natural progression of surfing, professional guiding, and general love for the ocean and the outdoors led him to the Channel Islands. During, and especially after college, Mike spent a few years overseas searching for surf and all the adventures that come along with that search. This sojourn led him to Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii, Fiji, Indonesia, Vietnam, and more, yet the Channel Islands always had a big role in keeping Mike coming back to Calfornia. “There is something incredibly satisfying about having a legitimate adventure in your own back yard. I have so much respect and have developed such good friendships with everyone I guide with. The crew at CIO is solid and I am happy to be a part of it.”
 
Matt’s roots are below the Ocean’s surface. From leading snorkeling tours in Alaska (that’s right we said Alaska), to being a dive instructor in Hawaii, there is little this guy can’t do with a mask & fins. Since joining the CIO family Matt has become an excellent paddler & you will find him out surfing on a SUP during his days off.
Bjorn became a part of CIO during his junior year at UCSB. Bjorn was born in Utah and raised in central California before moving to Santa Barbara. Bjorn is currently a shaper for his own company "Ocho Surf" out of Isla Vista, CA.
From northern California, Marina’s love for nature and the outdoors developed at a young age. When moving to Santa Barbara in 2007 to attend UCSB, her love for the ocean took off at an exponential rate! She quickly began surfing and figuring out how the ocean works. After graduating in Hydrologic Sciences, she took off to live in Kauai to surf, dive, kayak, hike and garden every day. Her recent travels through Asia have revamped her passion to teach others about how important clean and healthy oceans are to humans and all sea creatures.
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