Istmo Outrigger is a canoe design and fabrication company created by the father and son team, Bob and Chris Huerbsch, based in the Isthmus of Panama. Building off of their extensive experience designing and building 'cayuco' canoes, they decided to create a company that could provide first class outrigger canoes to Latin America's growing paddle community.
Istmo Outrigger sets out to not only continue on its design and fabrication path to design 2-man, and 6-man canoes, but also to create events, promote ocean awareness and help create the waterman lifestyle in a country that boasts of 2500 kilometers of coastline between its Atlantic and Pacific coast. In the Isthmus of Panama you can do a downwinder in the morning on the Atlantic coast, and then return for an evening session on the Pacific side or vice versa.
Chris also made a public commitment in 2017 to the Polynesian Voyaging Society to spread Malama Honua within Panama's paddle community. He is actively working on doing so by integrating Panama's first people into its paddle community by finding ways to sponsor them into competitive paddling through cayuco race, outrigger canoe and standup paddling events. In 2018 and 2019 the first two indigenous teams from Kuna Yala participated in the ocean to ocean cayuco race seasons. They were able to integrate into the local paddle community by creating bonds with other paddlers and have been using their experience to create their own programs in the islands of Kuna Yala to promote competitive paddling as well as ocean awareness.