River Place man kayaks to work

Jason Dzubinski of River Place makes his way across Lake Austin in an inflatable kayak on his way to work in West Lake.

Avoids traffic while staying fit

Four Points News

In March, Jason Dzubinski decided to try a new method to get from his home in River Place to his job in West Lake Hills — kayaking across Lake Austin and hiking. Not only is he able to avoid the traffic for a couple of hours on the days he kayaks, but also he is able to train for an upcoming trip to Colorado.

“Earlier this year, I took my 3-year-old son and 7-year-old daughter on a canoe trip down the Brazos river,” said Dzubinski, who is chief operating officer at Westlake Dermatology & Cosmetic Surgery.

He said it was during that trip that it dawned on him that water travel was not only possible, but a fun form of exercise. It led him to start looking for ways to cross Lake Austin on his commute.

The Dzubinski family moved to Four Points in 2011 after seeing and approving of the Leander ISD school district and surrounding area for their children and family.

“My husband started to complain about his commute more and more each year we lived here,” said Julia Dzubinski. “He first started to talk about how ‘If there was only a way to get to the other side of the lake?’ He would joke around that he could just swim across,” she said.

Julia came home one night from a mom’s night out and while away, Jason found the solution to his idea: the inflatable backpack kayak.

“When I stumbled upon the inflatable kayak on Amazon I knew that all the pieces had fallen into place and that my kayak commute would be possible,” he said.

Jason then spent about a week scoping out the route to make sure it would be safe and doable, she said.

Now he averages a couple of times a week where he rows to the other side of the lake in about 10 minutes, deflates the kayak and stuffs it in his backpack. Then he begins hiking through neighborhoods, without sidewalks most of the way, to get to his office.

When Dzubinski drives to work, it takes an hour. His alternative kayak route takes thirty minutes more, but his mindset is different when he arrives.

“When I drive to work and arrive I feel like my day is just getting started and my mind is racing over all the things I have to do,” Dzubinski said. “When I kayak to work, by the time I arrive I feel good knowing that I have already accomplished something and had some quiet reflection on my way to work, which puts me in a much less stressful state of mind.”

In addition, the kayaking and hiking provide training for an upcoming trip.

“He is training for a hiking/camping trip in Colorado in August so he figures it’s good training… although the heat is brutal,” Julia said.

This story has caught the attention of others in the community, including Facebook users and news outlets.

“I think the attention is great,” Julia said. “ My husband has always been an innovative, creative guy. It’s nice for a larger group of people to get to see this side of him. He is always just looking for fun ways to do the things that we all have to do: yard work, cleaning house, grocery shopping.”

Julia hopes Jason’s story will inspire others to find new and different ways to approach everyday activities.