Thursday, November 29, 2007

Thanksgiving Photo Shoot

Before I was on the McKenzie, I was paddling on the Skykomish River in Washington. If any of you have been up there in the last year, then you know that the North Fork road saw some pretty heavy damage in the flood last fall. I had the good fortune to be up there the weekend it happened for some of the last runs BUT thats not important now. What is important is what it looks like now along with a some good paddling folks on the South Fork.

Another amazing day in the Sky Valley!


Monday, November 26, 2007

South Eugene High School Kayak Club and Friends

After the Thanksgiving week of gluttony James and I met up for a play session on Neils Point on the McKenzie River and for the third weekend in a row I ran into the South Eugene High Kayak Club. These shredders were tearing it up out on the wave and I know I wish I had had the chance to be kayaking at that age. I am jealous

I have to apologize to those guys but I am terrible with names and I can only remeber a few but Quinn, Althia and Geoff were just a few of em getting it done out there.

See you guys on the river soon I hope!

Check out some more photos here

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

What do you get...

when you mix a bunch of women paddlers and one Dead Cow?


That's "No Ego and a lot of Smiles" if you failed 1st grade

I had the good fortune to team up with Kate Howell and the Willamette Kayak and Canoe Club
to teach a ladies only (mostly) playboating clinic out at Dead Cow Wave. We left Corvallis, bout 9 am picking up paddlers on the the way. Cate and I met in down town Corvallis and headed out to the infamous COP SHOP, a popular meeting area sandwiched between the local Adult Shop and the State Troopers post, where we met Kate and Kay. From there we headed up to Stayton Or on the N Santiam where we met Ashley, Grace and Dave (Dave was our token guy, besides me but I was teaching). Then up to the put in at Mehema Or where we met 4 more women, Rachel, Laurie, Lindsay and Courtney. ( I am so amazed that I can remember everyone's name).

After gearing up, a safety talk and a short warm up, we headed on down the river on the 4 miles of class 2 before the DEAD COW WAVE. The Dead Cow wave is the ultimate beginner wave. Its large enough to be retentive, small enough to be really non-threatening, fast enough to carve and throw small blunts, with a eddy large enough for 4 roll attempts and a swim! It has a smooth bottom and has about a 1000 cfs window on the North Santiam at Mehema gauge. You want between 2200 is getting low and 3500 is getting high. At one level at the higher end there is even as surgey wave hole where you can sling some ends and get some loops.

I recommend it to any aspiring playboater as a smooth transition to surfing if you're not ready for the Dries or Bus Eater!

I saw a few AHA's and alot of smiles on everybody's faces. Lindsay got some of her carves, Rachel felt what a difference a boat can make, Cate got to surf on her knees and a good time was had by all.

The only draw back to the Dead Cow is that its in the middle of no where, on Class 2 with a 4 mile paddle in and a 4 mile paddle out and the paddle out has a damn too. The damn is perfectly safe, there is a boat portage slide that's actually pretty fun!

I get as much enjoyment from teaching and watching people learn as I do from doing it so it was a great day for me too and I am looking forward the the next skill class I'll get to be a part of in Portland soon.

See more photos here!
UPDATE: Video that Kate shot!


Thursday, November 8, 2007

Class 2 is for you (and me)

I blame Cate for my pain. She brought the C1 devil to my attention and so I followed the crowd of WKCC paddlers out to the Deschutes for a little fun and found out a few things: I can roll a C1, I was worried about swimming on Class 2, its really hard to rescue boat on your knees and the pain doesn't go away in a day.

Steve Stuckmeyer in his 16ft canoe led a large, canoe strong, group of Willamette Valley paddlers to the East side for some fun. I though it might be a good time to come along, paddle Cate's Redline C1 for a kick. It was that indeed with the first day being about 14 miles and second being about 12. All I can say is that my life if fundamentally altered. My knees hurt, my ankles are still sort and I just spent about 7 hrs converting my cracked ZG to a C1. Good times.


Photos by Steve Stuckmeyer