Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Lake Cr 12/27/8 Video

Video of Devin testing out the Liquidlogic small Biscuit prototype on Grassy Lawn and Mill Wave. As well as myself, Michael and Shannon Williams. The end of the video has what The Horn looks like at 18 feet!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Swollen Sweet Creek Scouting 12/28/8

So I'd heard lots about Sweet Creek near the Lake Creek playboat run for some time but had yet to make the drive downriver to Mapleton and up Sweet Creek Road to the run. With the flooded out Siuslaw at 18.3' there was no chance eith me or Devin would be putting on but we couldn't resist the temptation to drive down and check it out!!

Here's what we saw..... the pics at normal flows around 8.5' are all by EJ Etherington and can be seen on the write up on Oregonkayaking.net. All flood pics are by myself.












Lake Creek Weekend 12/27-28/08

This weekend myself and Devin finally got to see Lake Creek, OR for what it really is and then some. Last year we were only able to make it out for what turned out to be a low run around 8.5 to 9 feet. The good come in around 10.5 and are good with eddy service to 11.5 feet. Friday we decided to head down with Michael and Shannon Williams, weird to say since they just returned after getting married the other week! Congrats ya two.. We planned to head down Saturday morning early, boat, stay the night in Florence and boat again Sunday before returning home.

All went as planned getting down near Mapleton, OR to the creek. As we were driving down I was checking the online gauge located on the Siuslaw River which Lake Creek feeds into near the end of the run. It was coming up from 7.5' Friday gradually and looked to on line for 10.5 to 11.0 for us. We scouted the only real rapid on the run, "The Horn" and got our shuttle done. Michael knows the run very well so he showed us the playspots as we headed down. There are tons of catch on the fly with several named ones like, "grassy lawn","mill wave", "the ledges" and "red hill wave". All were in and we spent most of our time on grassy lawn and mill wave. Devin was finally able to put the prototype small Biscuit through it's paces and he was very excited with it's performance. He's loved his LL Pocket Rocket and now the Biscuit will make that transition into the boat a very pleasant one. During the run the levels kept creeping up and got near 12.0'.

Once done with the run and shuttle we headed into Florence to get a room and eat at the famous clam chowder place "Mo's". Great food at a descent price and we then returned to our room to rest up. During the night the rain kept coming and we found ourselves with just over 16' on the gauge!! Wholly crap! Over 15' it's highly recommended that you're on your game as holes in "the ledges" get very sticky. Luckily for me and Devin was happy to join suit was to hop into our LL Chico and Grande Jefe's instead of the LL Ronin and Biscuit. There would not be much play other than what your could catch as you ripped down river. This isn't a creek at this point! This run rivaled your big water runs like the Lochsa or Crooked in character. Michael only had his playboat so he went down with it and Shannon opted to run shuttle not having a creeker. Good call in my mind.

We put in this time at the upper put-in for a warm up to get a feel of the beast and watch all the wood floating down with us. Creepy watching large tree's to small branches shoot past you when you're on a wave? It also gave me a opportunity to get a feel for my new creekboat! The Grande Jefe is similar in size with the Nomad 8.5 I'd been paddling. I'll compare the two later on. I'm not sponsored like Devin so I have nothing to gain by my opinions. I was very on the Truss with the boat and it proved to perform as I wanted on big water too.

After the warm up we came into "the ledges" starting near the left bank and I watched Michael in his playboat charge over a few large waves. As I crested one I got a glimpse of Michael climbing a huge near river wide ledge hole. What happened next sent a shiver down my spine as I was on the same line. At the top of the hole he was rejected flipping back into the hole and began getting chundered! With what felt time 20-30 mph current I watched for where Michael was getting worked and charged the ledge hole at full speed. I hit the turbo on my shiny red boat and punched the hole within 10 feet of Michael making it through without issue. Michael spent a few in the hole before flushing out after some fun loops. There are multiple ledge holes that you dodge while boat scouting through them. I then found myself in the front and ran "the horn" first. The rapid flushes out at that flow but had some huge waves with laterals crashing in. Good stuff!! Just after "the horn" is another pair of offset ledge holes. At the lower 11.5' we went down the middle in between them. This looked to still be the ideal line. The entrance is a right elbow that wants to push you left as you come into the ledges. We'd initially talked of running the far right but as we creeped around the corner the right hole looked to be scary big and Michael adjusted for the middle line though the holes. It worked quite nicely. The hole was as big or bigger than the next rapid at normal flows, "bus spot". "Bus stop" at 16'+ was nothing but a couple large waves. I briefly caught the first wave and can say I've surfed Bus Stop!! LOL.

"Red hill wave" becomes to ugly holes that Devin spent time in the lower one in the Chico and was happy to playboat out of it. "Mill wave" was in and Michael had a great ride in the wave hole, I blew off being too far surfers right catching it. Devin said he had his best surf in a creekboat on it but the eddy service didn't exist so we were hundreds of yards downstream while he was on it. Bummer...

In the end when we got off the water as Shannon gave me a ride back up to my Subi I found that the creek was at 18.34'!? 18.0' is flood stage for the Siuslaw River and most of the water was coming down Lake Cr. over the Siuslaw. It was just plain BIG!!!


We also went down to Sweet Creek to check it out at flood stage. Pics to come!! As well as video from playboat Lake Creek.

Monday, December 15, 2008

What can you do with a broken creeker? Ideas!

So you creek most of the year and occasionally land on a rock, piton, rock spin, boof a 20' waterfall? By any chance do you end up with a garage full of kayaks? I remember a video from the PDX Film Festival a couple years back my Mike Long in which he is picking through a stack of kayaks to figure the one he wants to take onto the L-Dub. As he grabs one out, he points out the cracks, dents and general shape of the fleet of broken boats much like the Navy does in a ship graveyard.

Only one problem. Steel ships can be stripped and melted down into the next fleet of ships. Not so with the choice of material that gets us down our favorite creeks. There are a few avenues for recycling but to the most part they are just garbage. Even many recycling programs the stuff has no end placement and makes it into the landfill anyway. I've taken that "so called" dangerous asbestos tiles my work removed, triple bagged and I took them to Metro and threw the tiles into a pit not 100 yards from the garbage you took to curb. Hmmm....

Mike Olson or commonly known as "Oly" had given me and my boys a great idea last winter when at New Years they brought out a couple snow sleds made from old creekboats. It's easy to do with a reciprocating saw or other saw.

Here's a few pics of our new Liquidlogic Chico snow sled. It was cut big enough for one or two passengers. The length so far seems to give nice speed on the test run Sunday with the recent and rare dumping of snow in the Portland area.

Devin modeling it out.

Devin and Ryan testing out the tandem capability.

The sled in action at one of Devin's friends neighborhood.

Oddly enough the sled was not my priority of the use of the old Chico shell. It was to be my first attempt at a kayakers x-mas tree? What does that refer to? To me it utilized a broken creek shell, a drill. few strings of lights and a broken paddle. Hmmm... something I have a few of sitting around!! Paddle pieces taken off the river we've carried out and such. I cut the boat in two at the widest point in the midpoint of the Chico for shape and stability with the reciprocating saw, took a 1 1/4 hole saw and drilled through the nose and into the grab opening to place the paddle piece into. I trimmed the length accordingly. Next came the fun part. The lights. I didn't want to just string lights with the wire exposed around the outside. Tree limbs help with that normally so I decided to run the wires internal. Oh boy!! That required taking all the bulbs off the sockets. In this case 100 bulbs. (I was gonna do 200 but two sections of my lights didn't work out of the box so 100 worked for now) I used small style socketed lights with round bulbs for the size and so the round bulbs wouldn't fall back through the holes. 5/16 drill bit did the job.

Ryan was small enough to lay inside the nose and push the sockets into the holes so could put the bulbs on one at a time. This takes a while but it's a fun family project. You can then dress it up as much as you normally would but may need to drill a few hole to attach bulbs or strings on it. Slippery boat is good in the water, not so good to drape ornaments on! :)

Here's a few pics after dressing it a bit. I'm not 100% done yet but you get the idea. Any color would work but the white Liquidlogic plastic gives it a frosted appearance which you normally pay a lot for...

Close of the nose. You can see the bulbs popping through the shell.

A brighter shot to show the kayak tree as it normally looks.

I kinda like this pic for it's night before x-mas look. I'm sure the boys wanta know where the presents are though!

If you have any other uses with pics I'd love to post them as well. I've heard of planters but have no such pics. The mailbox cover on near the White Salmon is a classic too.


Sunday, December 7, 2008

UUC - It all started with a drainplug?

So I haven't posted anything in a bit for the same reason most whitewater blogs have been getting rusty and neglected. No Water!! We did get a good dumping several weeks back and got on Opal Creek a few times before it snowed in, Upper Wind once, we've have gotten on the Truss section of the White Salmon 3-4 times in the past several weekends. At 1.75' and all coming from the top, it's been really good. (except the day me, Devin and Michael Williams all forgot pogies and with 39 degree air and low 40 water it plain sucked. I opted to not run Big Bro' that day cause I could not grip my paddle for sure get the boof off the flake. Sp far I have a good half dozen runs over Big Bro' with improved lines each time. Last weekend it was the Truss on Sat and N Santiam from Big Cliff Dam down to Mill City. Devin took that run off to hang with friends. Friends that don't kayak? Poor kid!! Just kiddin' Dev.

So now ur up to date with the past month.

Devin had gotten sick towards the end of this week so he was MIA on this Sundays trip down the Upper Upper Cispus. Levels for this stout class V run started at 740cfs on the gauge and rose up to near 1000cfs during the day. We expected it was rising with the light rain we had the entire time up there.

UUC 12/7/8 GAUGE

I myself have been fight walking pneumonia the past three weeks and haven't been to the gym during and my skinny ass can use all the muscle it can get. Lung capacity was been the biggest issue and energy levels have been slacking. This trip to the UUC was the first test of my low energy output on a stout run.

After several people fell off the trip emails due to sickness or broken boats it came down to myself, Chris Arnold and Eric Arlington. We all are fairly new to the UUC and plaid it safe most of the way down. The run is by far the most wood infested I have yet to run. Add the steep boulder gardens and things can go wrong quickly. The first warm up waterfall has wood just downstream and while Devin and Joe Stumpfeld ran it my past trip we all walked it on the left with ease. The run was going good and I felt pretty strong which I was happy to see.

I knew of possible wood in the bottom of a drop I believe is called "prelude to island". Oregonkayaking.net shows Jesse Coombs running it in the write up on the far left. Anyway, there is a tree blocking the left to center of the river making you run a sketch middle right line boofing right to cut far river right directly above a wood/ rock sieve. I told Chris and Eric the line we took and they both went without incident and it was my turn. As I made the right boof turn my right blade was too close to the hydraulic and my planned stroke turned into a flip and I got quickly pushed the 5 feet into the sieve! As soon as I touched the wood I knew where I was and pulled my skirt and grabbed onto one of the 6" pieces of wood sticking out of the water to stabilize myself. My boat went into the rock sieves a few feet away. I still had my paddle in my hand. I was able to get myself up onto the bigger rocks and Chris hopped rocks to help me get it unpinned and drained. I'd highly recommend just portaging the whole rapid till the wood is gone on the left. We knew better! Eric while draining more water out while I got over to river right bank dropped my drainplug in the water and was never seen again.

With a little less energy we headed downstream. Another piece of wood "the 3 foot variety" is blocking the center left to right bank. Last time with EJ having more water at that point the line was safer running far left. We all ran it OK but we all kinda boofed up onto the tree with the ability to get denied and pinned. Portagable on the right and visible prior to committing.

Island soon came up and I could feel my lack of motivation setting in. I hate the left slide line as it usually drops you into the bottom hole of the right channel. The right line runs you through a narrow pothole drop about 6' wide. I have yet to see anyone style the first drop hitting their boof. Eric went first. Flipped between holes but rolled up before the second one. I hesitant, went second. I just don't like the drop but portaging is a pain. I had a descent line not flipping or getting stuck in either hole and Chris went last with good results.

At a rapid called "the squeeze" where the river constricts again into a s-turn that slams you into a rock outcropping on the right wall. I once again didn't get the best line and hit my bow on the right wall. It shot up onto my stern, smacked by bow on the over head tree and got violently endered. My back was a little sore from that one. This time I just couldn't get a god setup and had my first swim in a benign runout in quite some time.

More boulder gardens and we had one last portage around more wood. Portage on either side. That and the right hillside slide downstream signals the entrance to the Behemoth Gorge. A fun stretch of holes that would be a lot more fun to get stuck in if Behemoth Falls wasn't but 20 yards downstream!! Christie Glissmeyer and myself both got a quick tour of the last big hole on my last trip. Eric set safety at that hole today which was great to have. I got flipped in the hole but rolled up to catch the right eddy in time.

Chris was on the left bank after running the gorge first and Eric was above me. They both asked if I was gonna be the probe and I decided. Sooner the better I felt. I charged out from the right eddy with good right to left angle over the entrance slide portion of the drop. Last time I fell off the slide into the meat of the falls. Didn't want a repeat!! I charged a bit too hard, hit the flake and shot of the remaining 15'? sideways. Landed upright but the hydraulic quickly flipped me being parallel to the curtain. Rolled up quick to find to my horror the boils were forcing me into a part of the falls I'd only heard about. The eddy pocket left of the curtain!! I tried with all I had, even at 100% I'm doubtful the outcome would have changed.

The eddy is a place one doesn't want to visit! It's about a paddle width wide from left wall to the curtain of the falls. The boils continue wanting to shove you along the wall and into the curtain. I was still in my boat but trapped without either paddlers able to see me or know anything. Chris could see the exit of the falls and knew I hadn't made it out while Eric had no way to know. For the next several minutes I would try to paddle out, get rejected, forced back into the curtain, go up either end that it hit and paddle back away to get spun 180 and repeat. I was not coming out of the eddy without two options: Chris that was on my side of the river got down along the cliffs. I near impossible task without himself falling into the the river or I paddled into the curtain and got the beating of my life and with a slim chance in my mind come out downstream without imploding my skirt, getting shoved behind the curtain in the back in or out of boat. Swimming downstream means I'd be swimming towards my favorite "bastard hole" and a solid class V boulder garden while Chris and Eric could do nothing.

I took being in my boat and stuck till I got put into the curtain against my will or ran out of energy. After what seemed like a lifetime I saw Chris' head above me!! He threw down a rope he'd already anchored off to me. There were not grab point on the wall with the exception of a small pothole a couple of feet up. I tried several attempts at getting my paddle to stay and finally did. The boat was not a option for me to anchor into the rope so I pulled my skirt, holding onto the rope and pulled myself up onto the pothole and my boat disappeared into the curtain. Oh well!

This only provided a short term fix with Chris unable to pull me up from directly above via that rope. I used a carabiner and my safety anchor on the front of my Astral PFD to tie me to the rope. Chris then quickly worked his way downstream and lower to a point he could pull from and wanted to throw another rose to me. The plan: untie myself from the one rope and jump towards downstream aka the curtain and boils. I kept trying to get him to pull me straight up but he said that wasn't a option and after a few attempts to get me the rope. I did want didn't come willing or naturally. Jump. I finally did and I'm glad Chris is big enough anchor to pull me away from the curtain. That then sent me swimming the left line by the "bastard hole" Out of sight I made it to the left bank but the eddy wanted to not make it so easy.

Now safe and below both drops I found my boat and paddle were in the large recirculating eddy on river right next to the falls. I later found that they had decided to throw my paddle from above into the eddy after I'd tied the paddle to the rope I'd been anchored to. I was confused for a second till I found out why. Both Chris and Eric had good lines over the falls. Chris ran the "bastard hole" eddying out river right and Eric paddled into the right eddy to attempt to get my gear out of it's grip. In the end Chris with my PFD throw rope went up over the right cliff to the eddy within a punchbowl and the two of them retrieved my boat and paddle. Chris made a good call and hopped into my Nomad and with my paddle ran the "bastard hole" Eric had already ran it and got stuck in the hole. When he came out of his boat he was briefly stuck in the hole and I found I had neither ropes with me and could only watch hoping for the best. He and his boat flushed out and he self rescued all but his paddle that I could only watch it head through the class V boulder garden till out of sight.

Chris roped me over to my boat and we quickly headed down through the rapid. At one point I ran a drop, flipped getting pushed up against what felt like a large boulder with a small diameter piece of wood against it. I quickly pulled my skirt, flushed around it with boat and paddle into a eddy.

We charged down through the mile or so runnout and got to the take-out at 4:10? It was dark by 4:30! Scary....... :(

That now makes for the worst day paddling in my life. But at least my life goes on!!

Tally for the run:

me - wood/rock sieve rescue
me - 2 swims out of my boat
me - getting stuck in the left eddy of Behemoth
Eric - lost throwbag at Behemoth
Eric - lost paddle (last seen traveling through the last class V boulder garden
Chris & Eric - a shit load of river karma for helping me

me - oh, did I mention my Nomad 8.5 ended up with two large cracks under the seat during the run. I noticed the biggest prior to Behemoth Gorge.

Lesson learned:

Safety classes and continued practice of rescue skills can and will save a friends life.
Always wear a drysuit or equivalent in cold water. It quite possible saved my life several times on the UUC today from hypothermia!!

Video of Chris Arnold on Island rapid.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Almost the end of football season

Man, what a season for ups and downs it has been for both Devin and Ryan's football teams. Ryan's went 5-3 and made the playoffs this weekend. Ryan's 5-6 Centennial team will face Molalla's undefeated 8-0 on Saturday. Devin's team on the other hand had many coaching or lack of issues this season and had a unfortunate season of 2-6. Though they didn't win many Devin had a good season as the lead running back and outside linebacker. In every game Devin would only come off the field in a extra point attempt or if he wsa injured. Or in reality, if he got hurt. He came out for a play and they'd through him right back into the next play. Not much rest for the poor kid but he wouldn't of had it any other way.

The only downside to the playoffs this weekend is that we were almost ready to buy tickets and fly back to watch the Green Narrows Race in North Carolina. The take-out is LiquidLogics base of operations!! Of course we planned on getting on the Green for our first times as well. I wouldn't miss Ryan's game to watch a race on the Green so there is always next year.

Good luck Ryan!!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Devin turns 14!!

This weekend has two big events. The end of Devin's football season. The next time he plays, he'll be in High School! Wholly crap time flies by.... The other is Devin's fourteenth birthday on Sunday. I can remember back four years ago when I first got him out on the Klickitat with my friend Lauren Boehm. He was so cute in that Stohlquist drysuit all bunched up around him. It was a womens small but still big all over. Now he weighs close to my own weight and can hold his own when we, I'd say playfight but I've ended up with bruised ribs out of a few exchanges.

Here a few pics of him at 10 yrs old.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Off Season Ink Work

With the water levels being not up to par during the Summer I've been able to satisfy another addiction of mine. Tattoo's!! Most of my ink is associated with whitewater or outdoors. The lastest is my backpiece being done by Jason Bradbury at Atomic Art in Portland, OR.

In the pic, the shading and outlining is all done after 9 hours and coloring it in starts next month. Good thing I have a drysuit!!Backpiece part 3

Monday, September 22, 2008

Upper Deschutes TR Big Eddy to Bend

All photo's taken/provided by Josh Mckeown on previous lower water runs

We had to run out to Bend to grab the small LL Biscuit prototype from Christina Russell last weekend. Luckily for us Christina recommended that we bring our creekboats along to run the stretch of the Deschutes that is above Bend and runs into town. What better than doing a IV to V run and paddling into town for lunch!! We decided to run from Big Eddy down. With access to several of the big drops via roads that run along the Deschutes you can put-in and take-out at multiple spots. Benham Falls V, Dillon Falls V, Lava Falls V and Meadow Camp IV to V. Not sure on the overall length of each or combined sections but I believe Christina said that Big Eddy to Bend was 8 miles. Sounds good. The flows were 1800cfs, almost twice as the write up we'd looked at on Oregonkayaking.net and Christina and Josh told us it was medium flow to the locals in Bend. High I'd say for the normal PDX boaters that head out this time of year normally when the irrigation district is only releasing the lower 900 flows. At 1750cfs pics would have been hard to pull of and being our first time down I'm usually too nervous to throw a cheap SLR in my boat!! It was raining as well. Lava1 was full of weird currents that required you to punch a large boil on river left to catch a eddy or keep driving left into the left channel to avoid the riverwide ledge hole in the right channel. Me and Devin both were a little under the weather from driving 3 hours and opted to portage Lava1, the first s-turn into the eddy. Josh, Jon and Christina met us in the eddy and we ran down through the second s-turn in the left channel. The line through the lower was stay far left just like the first 1/2. The bottom ledge had a descent hole but even being left of center as I ended up was fine if straight and ya punched it.

Josh Mckeown hitting the line in the first 1/2 of Lava1 at 900cfs

Below Lava1 was some boogey water referred to as "cut-em-up". Apply named for what happens if you swim out of Lava1. We ran it far right but it was just read and run class IV.

A long pool after the boogey water and we found ourselves at the lip of "Lava2" One note about the rapids on this run is that all the drops have big horizon lines that prevent you from seeing anything downstream. One exception is "Lava2". OK, not really but when you see mist shooting high into the air past the horizon line you get the gist. Christina felt it was better to give verbal lines on this one and like "double drop" on the White Salmon. You'd probably walk it if ya looked at the beast!! The line was far left till reaching a big pillow of water blasting a huge boulder and cut hard-hard right to hit a boof avoiding the huge keeper hole. Check the write up on Oregonkayaking.net. You'll see the huge boulder in the photo next to the paddler. They refer to it as Barry's not Lava2 that I'm told the Bend boaters call it FYI. That's where you start to make your move and it the photo of Steve "melting the hole". That's the huge hole you don't want to be around at 1800. The rock to Steve's right creates the boof flake we hit. Believe me when I say that you can't paddle hard enough to make the move at that flow. I was digging in till the flake.

Looking down into Lava2 at lower flows of 900cfs

That is the Lava Falls section and now we continue onto Meadows Camp.

Meadows Camp
Christina Russell on "Amazing" on the Meadows camp section

According to Christina this is the order of rapids on the Meadows Camp section:

"Damn it"
"Mario Bros"

Meadows camp is rated 4+ at lower flows but at 1800cfs it's full on V. The change from the two sections isn't too severe but the geology/ seives/ consequence for sure does. On the Lava Falls run a swim in the hole would be bad due to the lava river bed and some wood pinned in a few places to watch out for. Down in Meadows Camp it's less of a lava flow and the rocks are undercut and seived out. "Damn it", which has a irrigation pipe firing out from river right wants to slam to into a huge boulder that Christina mentioned later is a seive and getting on the left side or swim at the boulder could be bad. Plus she said there is wood stuck in the seive as well. Yikes!

Christina Russell on "Damn it". You can see the irigation pipe on her right

The line me and Devin ran was literally ferrying our boats from the eddy above the pipe on river left at the pipe outflow, as close to the pipe the better. It's a lot of pressure and like a big curler pushes you towards the river left undercut boulder. I ended up on the right side pillow of the boulder and braced my way around the right side back into the current. It's very unusual to say the least.

Mario Bros is unlike any other drop on the run. The river becomes very channelized and with all the exposed lava rocks, wood gets snagged easily and is a always changing in the rapid. Christina took us down far left then back center right for the second 1/2. Jon and Josh took two different lines all together ranging from center to far right at the top. Guess it all goes at 1800.

100% is another classic huge horizon line and the last final rapid. Christina tells us, "the line is down the middle". Sounds good. I follow Christina and as I see over the horizon there are three offset huge boulders and we're gonna shoot between them. It's basically a flairing paradise as I head up unto one pillow, turn and head into the next. You don't have much choice about this either. Devin later told me that all he saw was me heading at one boulder and though, "oh sh*$". Then realized that was the line. I think we got the biggest laugh out of 100%.

All in all, I think the write up on Oregonkayaking that happens to be the only one I found doesn't do this run justice and the lines mentioned at the 900cfs would give one really bad day at 1800cfs. I'm hoping Christina and Josh get a write up to Rackley for the 1800 range. This run is up there with the Crooked without the length and runs year round at varying flows. Josh said 2100cfs was the perfect flow!!

cheers, Corey

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

2nd Annual Football Team Rafting Trip

This year I changed things up a little from the Deschutes float of last year. Devin had worked for Wet Planet Rafting in White Salmon, WA with Heather Herbeck on their kids kayaking course over the summer. In trade Jaco from Wet Planet gave us 6 spots or one raft guided down the Orletta and Middle sections of the White Salmon River. For 3 on the team that went. It would be their first times on whitewater, two went with us on the Deschutes last year and one has been rafting with his mom and grandparents in the past. None though on anything like the White Salmon! In the end they all had a blast and the pics show how bored they were on the run.

Much thanks to their guide Matt and the rest of Wet Planet for taking the experience they will never forget!!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

NF Payette's Lower 5

Just a few days prior to Labor day weekend, I decided to make a trip out to Idaho after seeing a section of the Snake River "Murtaugh Canyon" was in. The weekend was focused on getting out to Twin Falls to hook up with LiqiudLogic rep ted Keyes and a few friends of Ted's. A bonus was LL's prototype playboat "Biscuit" in the medium size was in Ted's posession as well. Most likely head back to the Payettes and run a couple sections as well. I'll get to the "Biscuit" and Murtaugh Canyon in the next post.

Last minute planning Ted mentioned I should bring Devin's Chico Jefe along to run the NF Payette with him and friends. Uh, OK!? So far it was gonna be playboats only. I'd already loaded the car in preparation of leaving after work so now I had to head home and through in a creek boat? Fine...

Levels for the NF looked good for Devin's first time down the Lower 5, considered the easier stretch of the class 5, 15 miles of continuous whitewater. We had ran into HR boaters Joe Stumpfeld, Bryon Dorr, Rachel Crowder and a few others the day prior after a SF run. Devin was gonna run the Lower 5 on Monday with them and then we'd drive 6 hours back to Portland. Devin had a blast on the run and they added "Hounds Tooth". Part of the middle 5 as the first drop of the run. Several pics in the slideshow are Devin, Joe C1'ing and Bryon with the hand grab on "Hounds Tooth". Other pics are random shots taken as I drove along the run. The pic of Devin running down a tongue is the last big rapid of the Lower 5. What's funny to me is that he's inches away from one of the biggest holes on the run and he's casually wiping the hair out of face!?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

pic by Shane Benedict

Pics of the new LiquidLogic Biscuit's during testing on the Ottawa in Canada.

The plan is to hopefully get our hands on a medium Biscuit on our trip to Idaho this weekend. While it should be too big for Devin to throw around like the small coming out. It will give us a little taste of the new Biscuit!!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Upper Upper Cispus TR

The crew taking a break on a side excursion near the take-out.
The put-in waiting for the HR crew to show.

This past Sunday me and Devin got to test the question as to which is more fun and harder. The Little White Salmon or The Upper Upper Cispus? The common rivalry is the LW is more continuous with individually easier drops which makes for a fun run as long as you don't get stuck in a hole, pinned, lose grips with your paddle (a common issue) or break your boat on a rock you should not have boofed onto. The result usually is pulling out a breakdown paddle or hiking out. I've heard of a paddler swimming 3-4 times on the run upon losing his boat and hiking out. Another one is a paddler breaking his paddle and going throw 2-3 breakdowns and then having to hike out. The LW is littered with more boats and paddles than any other run that I'm aware of in the NW!!

The UUC on the other hand has pools to collect yourself between the drops but several big class V bouder gardens, several with wood in them and a mandatory waterfall referred to as Big falls or more commonly just Behemoth. Behemoth set the levels that padders run the UUC at. Too high and the stories of bad lines over the falls resulting in getting worked in the hole directly above the falls in the gorge, getting behind the curtain of the falls or having a bad day in the hole below the falls 40 yards.

So off we go to find out in our own opinion.

It's a 2.5 hours drive from Portland, OR to the take-out near Randle, Wa. That makes it one of the longer drives the PDX crew head to as the local runs drop out and the UUC comes in. We met up with a paddler in Vancouver to carpool, Rick Cooley. Rick that had been oddly enough on our first run on the Green Truss run of the White Salmon. We then drove up to the t/o to meet with Ej Etherington and a few others he'd ran the UUC with on Sat and camped nearby. Also, a crew from Hood River was coming up. In the end it was 11 of us in one big crew making our way down. Me and Devin were the only virgins on this day. That's good in that they know the run, the bad is we didn't plan on looking at any drops with the exception of Island and Behemoth. That kinda made us nervous and Devin was pretty quite up to this point.

At the put-in we were told the first fun falls was a portage with wood in it. All but a few hiked their boats along river left and put in below the falls. The ones that paddled down ran the falls eddying out river right to portage the pieces of wood in the run out rapid. Devin decided to put in right above the falls, run it and portage like the others. He had a pretty good left to right line on the falls, flipped, quickly rolled up and made the eddie with no problem.

As we headed down river we came to some pretty stout boulder gardens that were a blast. All you could see was a trail of multi-colored boats heading downstream. normally 24 would be in sight at a given time. We'd eddie out into a large pile of boats and start it all over again. Rick was great at letting us know the lines through the drops.

At Island. I believe it's rated V+ in the WA guide books. The rapid consists of the river splitting around a island with the left side being considered the easier line with a slide into the hole on the right channel as the flows come together. The right side has a narrow channel into a ledge that's hard to boof and then getting right to avoid the same hole the left side feeds into. We all ran the right channel with varying different outcomes but all resulting in a fairly clean line. Devin's line was last and he plugged the ledge hole, claims he rolled up, we never saw him upside down so this happened prior to resurfacing. He then made the right line at the bottom hole with ease.

A few more drops down and we came to a narrow drop that had wood at the bottom on the right side. With no scouting we weren't sure of the angle or move necessary to avoid the wood. My line provided the most entertainment when I didn't get left soon enough, smacked the right wall at the wood, stern squirted up onto the wall and then flushed under the wood. The wood wasn't pinny at normal flows it seems. Oh good!!

A drop before Island the normal right channel was choked with wood and we had to portage on the left. Devin and Joe Stumpfeld? put their boats up on a big boulder to slide in. This caused us to not head down with the others as they started scouting the gorge above Behemoth. We opted to just run the gorge off verbal lines given that worked. I missed my line and dropped into the sticky hole you run on the far right side. After a brief beatdown I flushed out and quickly caught the left eddie above the falls to scout. We watched everyone run the gorge and another ride in the hole and a stern squirt resulting in a flip and we were clear of it. Several ran the falls blind knowing the line, some scouted it. All from the left side then fairing to right eddie. From the right eddie you can easily make the right to left move over the falls to hit the line. I ended up being the last man standing up there since I helped Devin with his boat and filming his line over the falls. He had a great line and it was my turn.

I slid in with a bit to much momentum and got my bow turned downstream and decided to commit to the falls rather that fight for the right eddie. The result was a center to left move that didn't get me up onto the flake and I plugged the middle of the falls. Oops, not good. I disappeared for a bit and was happy to surface downstream and on the right side. The normal line over the ledge hole is far left but the boils were pushing hard right. EJ had told us the right side went. Preferably 5 feet off the right wall or just be pointing downstream with momentum. I ended up not getting far enough from the right wall as it makes the bend out of the punchbowl and got stuck in the right pocket below the hole. One wrong move and I was headed back into the hole. With only being able to us my left paddle it was tough but I was fortunate to dig my way out and run the final class V boulder garden. After that rapid the river dies to class II for a mile it seems and then the bridge we take out at.

It was a great run. Both of us considered the LW a better run with the UUC having a lot more consequence factor and more wood currently. It's now our top #2 tun we've done though.

Video of my failed line over the bastard hole as I call it below Behemoth Falls.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Lower Little White, A goal achieved!!

Obviously this blog is about my son and this post is no different with one main exception. It's a goal that I've not tossed around till the past weekend to run the Lower section of the Little White River, what most just call the L-Dub. Yeah, Devin's been running the stretch now 5 times this Summer and by chance one of the youngest to have ever ran it. Once again Dane Jackson's name pops up. Austin Rathman took both down for their first times. He likes small boys I'm told. Sorry Austin!!

Last weekend Devin, myself headed out to the LW to meet up with a good friend of ours Michael Williams to take me down for my first time. Levels had dropped down to 2.8'. Most consider 3.1' to be the magic number but under 3.0' the run loses come of it's punch and becomes more technical and I liked the idea of it being more like the Egua that me and Michael had ran in Italy recently. Low, technical and holes that didn't want to eat you alive. Sounds good to me!

I bailed at the put-in! Why? The LW has such a history in folk lore in the PDX paddling community of people losing gear, throwing up or hiking out at the first rapid, "Getting Busy". A 1/2 mile long boulder garden in the 300fpm range. Plus, you can't see any of the run except Spirit Falls if you've hiked in but it fails to give a image of the rapids around this beautiful falls placed in a huge punchbowl. Instead we ran the Upper Little White, also rated class V though tons of paddlers especially outside of the PDX or HR area know or have done this run. It's a shorter version of Getting Busy and provided a really good glimpse of what would lie below in what a lot of people consider the hardest rapid on the run. I had a blast on the stretch below Schroomtrooper and feeling like I could tackle Getting Busy.

Fast forward back to today and once again I find myself with my son and good friend Michael Williams at the put-in for the L-Dub. Levels had dropped a little but still holding at 2.6'. I was in high spirits and this time it wasn't even a question of putting on. What lied downstream of course made me nervous but I'd told myself to not even worry of the lines on the big drops below Getting Busy and take one task at a time. You can't be concerned with making a omelet if you don't have any eggs. So lets get down to them and look at each one. It worked and quickly found myself sitting at a lip of a drop, getting verbal commands mostly and firing off several large drops like S-turn and Wishbone. Both in the 18-20 range I'd guess blindly and nailing my delayed boofs Gene17 had drilled in my head so hard in Italy. Thanks Simon Westgarth, Dave Carrol, Matt Tidy and Ed Cornfield for the instruction like no other.

One of the highlights for me was to see how proud Devin was of my accomplishment to tackle the mental game known as the L-Dub. I realized how special kayaking has become as a bond between us. Thanks Devin for believing in me when I doubted myself.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Fitting Comic Strip

So why does this comic resemble mine and Devin's life? Especially in the Summer when I can only boat on weekends and the ocassional weekday evening run if the sun stays out late enough. The poor kid can get out everyday up till the start of Football season and that kicked in last week so now he's back to weekends like me!!

Oh waaa!!!!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

New Website Address

I finally registered the wondermidget name today and now the site is:


As I understand by blogspot the old address will still be linking to the blog as it had in the past.

cheers, Corey

Monday, August 11, 2008

Friday, August 8, 2008

The End of the Weekday Runs?

Last night myself, Devin and Michael Williams headed out to Hood River for what will most likely be our last run in the evening after work. In part due to me and Michael both unable to get away from work at 4pm and the sun starting to set earlier and earlier. Sunset was 8:30pm last night though it was more like 8:45pm it seemed.

With traffic getting out of Portland and a last minute job at work my escaping at 4:30 turned into 5:05 at I found myself at BZ by 6:30pm which had been the planned meet time but Michael had gotten there around 6pm and Devin had been in HR all week so I was the delay. We gathered all our gear quickly into Michaels Subi and we headed up to Green Truss bridge to gear up and climb down to the White Salmon River to cool down. It was in the mid 80's from the time we put on till we got off. OK, it dropped to 78 as the sun came down?

The run went great. Even though it's mine and Devin's first year being focused on the Truss and levels hovering around 2.6'we we're all comfortable keeping a quick pace downstream. With a put-on time of 7:11pm we knew there wasn't a lot of time to screw around. Big Bro' would be out for me and Devin's possible first time, I would run Lower Zig-Zag with the wood in it ( not because of time requirement but because I wanted to run it again! ), and me and Devin would walk BZ Falls unless Devin looked at it immediately and gave it a go. He looked briefly and shouldered his boat.

We walked off the water at Maytag at exactly 8:30pm!!!!!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Green Truss Video

Video from last weekend on the Truss. Shannon's first time this season.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Devin becomes full LiquidLogic Team Member

Devin has been paddling the Chico Jefe and Pocket Rocket from LiquidLogic for the past year now loving both. Today after talking with Devin LL rep Ted Keyes and the owner of LL, Woody Callaway. Devin is now a full team member of LL. Prior to now, Devin was still part of LL just some of the details have changed.

Rumors of a new playboat in the smaller people size may be coming down the pipeline. We'll see what Shane Benedict has in store at the OR trade show next month.

Congrats, Devin

Monday, July 21, 2008

Gorge Games BoaterX

Devin and Brandon Wells taking 1st and 2nd place. Robbie Virostek too 3rd but didn't hang for the awards.

pics by Melissa DeCarlo and Katie Wagner

Devin along with four other youths had in it out in two heats with the top two from each heat making the finals. In the end Devin dominated his heat and the finals by a fair margin over the others. Devin and Todd Wells, age 16 had to chase down a boat from a swimmer below TopDrop before getting back up to their next heat. Guess the safety crew didn't feel it was important to have a boater in the water or ready to drop in if needed?

Devin being the youth winner then advanced to the Men's semi's where he was in first coming into Maytag by 20 yards when he flipped and had a kayak on top of him when he tried to roll, got his paddle knocked out of one hand. Finally able to roll up he paddled down to take 3rd but not advance to the next round but he did get to make his presence known with the big dogs!!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Summer Vacation in the Hood

Here's a brief list of Devin's boating this week:

Sat 13: Farmies/Truss
Sun 14: L-Dub
Mon 15: Truss/MWS
Tue 16: Truss/L-Dub
Wed 17: Worked for me then went to the gym
Thu 18: Truss (two laps)
Fri 19: Truss (swims out of BZ Falls!!) 1st major swim too.
Sat 20: Truss (watched Gorge Games Extreme Race. Competed in BoaterX taking 1st in youth division)
Sun 21: Farmies/Truss

Poor life kid!? In the end 8 laps on the Truss, 2 laps on the Farmies and 2 laps on the L-Dub in 8 days.

Monday, July 14, 2008

7/12 &7/13 Busy Weekend in the Hood

Devin and Austin getting ready to put in on the Little White Salmon

Pat Keller, with yes, hand paddles on the Little White!!

On Saturday, Devin and myself ran the Farmlands and Green Truss sections of the White Salmon at 3.25'. The highest we've both ran the Truss to date. The Farmlands 3.25 is a normal medium level and there were not many surprises but once we hit the Truss. Things started to get juicy really quick but not in a bad way. Many rocks were covered and with the exception of some bigger holes we both felt that the run cleaned up. We both portaged Big Bro', Bob's and BZ and Lower Zig-Zag cause of the wood. Every since I got beat in Bob's, Devin is very respectful of the drop and has not been really interested in running it. I'm kinda still working on it as well and it seemed much better at 3.25 than at lower flows as long as you stayed out of the pocket hole in the middle.

Our only real entertainment for the Truss was Upper Zig-Zag were I got spun around near the top, flipped and ran the majority of the rapid upside down!? It's nice to know that you can ride it out since the water takes you where you want to go anyway. Plus, once your doing a head rudder it's easy to not flip!! Devin got tangled with me near the bottom left undercut wall and we both briefly flipped and plushed through but Devin got to brace off the wall with his head. Oops! One thing that is amazing with Upper Zig-Zag is that even if you gap yourself 60-100 feet behind the person in front of you. If they get off line, you are on them like white on rice. Allen Thatcher who was behind Devin became too close for his comfort as me and Devin got tossed around.

Sunday I decided to take a break and let my shoulder rest and Devin got a email from Austin Rathman wanting to boat the L-Dub. The flows had dropped to around 3.2' finally and it seemed a good option for the day. The flows ended up being 3.3' and Devin had a blast running it with Austin and Pat Keller from Team Dagger. Pat is a amazing paddler that is alot like Devin. Not only in hairstyle but Pat started out ina kayak when he was like 6 years old. Pat being the animal he is opted to hand paddle the Little White without portaging any drop and even fired off Spirit Falls. I had hiked in to take some pics but after my scouting of Upper Little White. I got down just after he had ran it and got to only see Austin signal to me that everything went smooth and I saw the three head down river. Austin and Devin portaged Spirit.

This was Devin's second run down the Little White and he had remembered most all the lines and was even taking some of his own. Something that most people don't do till their 6-7th time down the run. It's impressive to see how well Devin's memory is to rapids. I've learned to not argue with him to much on a rapid. Though I still do. I'm a little stubborn too!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Fibark - Hooligan's Race Pic

thanks to Shane Benedict of LiquidLogic for the pic.
I was able to get a pic of Devin during his favorite race or event of his whole trip to Colorado. The Hooligan's Race at the Fibark. It's like our "anything but whitewater float race" but on a insanely entertaining level.

Devin's team was named, "the young guns" with team members: Dane Jackson and Jason Craig from Team Jackson. Devin is up front in the yellow drytop digging in to pull the pool toy through the competition hole.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Devin joins "Team Bomber Gear"

It's official, Devin is now part of the newly reborn Bomber Gear. Devin had met Rick Franken, the owner, last year on his way out to Colorado for the Jr Olympics. Sam Drevo had stopped by Ricks and Rick sponsored all the kids for the competition with a piece of clothing. Devin in the end came home with shorts and a underlayer top. The shorts he has wore most all the the Winter/ Fall boating season.I guess you could say he likes them.

When Devin was once again out in CO. Devin ran into Rick at the Fibark competition and offered Devin to join his team. I talked with Rick earlier today to finalize things. Devin being a minor I get to deal with these things. He just kayaks and has fun. Nice!!

Congrat, Devin.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

6/22/8 Multi-River Day

With my other addiction of tattoo's, which I got more done on Saturday, I opted for a casual day of boating. Well, that and I lost one of my river shoes out of my boat Saturday prior to my tattoo appt. while draining my playboat at Joe Bob's. That put a damper on the plan of Upper Opal, Opal and Opal Gorge run that we'd planned on. A mandatory portage in the Gorge without trusting soles above a bad sieve. Hmm, bad idea.

So, instead I called up some friends to find not alot of people getting out. Though, Kris Litz, a good HR freind was planning a trip down the Upper Wind. Why not? I loaded up the playboats for that run. Yeah, most people take creekers but it makes the run more entertaining and there is plenty of play on the run in the runnout that most people hate. Cause they're not in playboats!! I also loaded up the creekers with the hope of finding someone from the Wind run or HR boater to run the Upper East fork of the Hood. A awesome class IV+ 4-5 mile continuous rapid/ boulder garden. I'd done a few laps while Devin was in CO and had hoped it would still be in when he got back home. It was!!

After our run down the Wind which was pretty uneventful, one swimmer that sucks on that run usually and myself getting worked in a hole way up top above Initiation, the first class IV and the start to the busy stretch that follow for miles. After a few cartwheels I flushed out and though this was gonna pretty entertaining run.

Got the shuttle done and me and Devin were headed into Hood River to grab lunch and hopefully find someone to boat with. As I came into cell range I got a message from a friend in HR that had gotten my email earlier that I was looking at getting out today and by chance I was in his part of town a hour after he had called me. We were all up for the UEFH run and after me and Devin grabbing a coupl pieces of pizza to go and a few pairs of nose plugs from The Shed. We were off to the UEFH or Upper East fork of the Hood.

It was a true treat for me to share this run with Devin. I'm not running the Little White but this run is for sure challenging and has only consequences if you happen to find yourself upside down or into the wood that is always present on this run. There is one mandatory portage around a huge unrunnable logjam and a few optional ones that depending on how you feel about wood are easily walkable. Besides the logjam we walked three pieces. One being a hundred yards from the take-out, so we just walk up to our cars from there. It's a no brainer. Devin was all smiles from ear to ear during and after the run. Yeah, he asked for another lap. Not today!! I did my first flip and happily rolled before nailing a rock with my head rudder. I consider this run to require a solid brace and a optional roll. Most people that flip on the UEFH bail after hitting a rock or two and or lose their paddles out of their hands. A good friend donated his creekboat to the UEFH just Saturday.

If you see a blue Dragonrossi Mafia let me know and I'll get you in touch with it's owner.

The logjam from the bottom looking back up at it.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Monday, June 16, 2008

The Return of the Midget

Tonight, Devin flies back from trekking around Colorado with the Hyde family and I get my little paddling buddy back!! While he's had fun in CO I did my best to keep up or out do him here and with the amazing water going on it wasn't hard to do. I hit Upper Quartsville, Canyon Creek, OR, Canyon Creek, WA, Copper Creek, Opal Creek and Upper Opal Creek sections of the Little North Fork of the Santiam. In the end of two weeks my new Nomad 8.5 got a few injuries I broke my AT2 yesterday rolling in a hole on CC, WA, but I wouldn't of changed a thing.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Oh Be Joyful a no go?

Devin and company heard from a few at Fibark that had tried getting onto OBJ the day prior that the creek you have to drive across was 4' deep and to high to cross and the run would most likely be too high as well.

Poor guy will have to wait till next year but hopefully I can make it out next year as well so I happy at least!!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Child drowns on the clackamas story

Thought that this story was a tragic situation and proof of what dangers arise when ropes are added into a dynamic environment. A simple throw rope thrown to someone inexperienced in handling one and not having a knife. A main reason why I don't prefer to throw a rope to someone without a knife.

My point is, "ropes can become a danger on the water very quickly."

They were also on the Clackamas going down a normally simple class I+ section but at 10k. High Rocks becomes very dangerous. My first experience into whitewater kayaking was in grade school when a friends dad who kayaked the Grand Canyon and others runs as I was told then class IV boater. Drowned at High Rocks while kayaking. He was pulled under by the boils that form at higher flows and will take you under the shelves and pin you there. A good friends mom use to be a rescue diver that has recovered bodies from High Rocks years back and she said it's pretty creepy down there.


Oh Be Joyful

Thought I'd throw up a video from youtube.com of what Devin will be on Thursday. Oh Be Joyful in Colorado!!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008


Devin and the Hyde family made the two hour drive from Denver to the Arkansas River to start training for the FibArk competition this weekend. This will be Devin's second time doing slalom and being in a actual glass slalom boat. Something I'm glad to see with the limited slalom boating in Oregon and the major benefits it's provides to you creeking. People like Sam Drevo and Brad Ludden started out slalom boaters and have became amazing talented creekers.

Monday, June 9, 2008

The Hyde Family

I found a few pics Mike Hyde had on the internet and wanted to put them on to remember this awesome family that is allowing Devin to stay with them and go boating everyday. Something that I'm proud of Devin's love for the sport and others enjoyment of wanting to be around him. It's not about what he can do on the water but what kind of adult he'll become.

This is Mike and his 8yr old son Henry. Henry even competed in the 8-ball race at TEVA this year. Though Devin said the others were gonna use him as a shield since the ballers agreed to not hurt Henry.

Henry Hyde surfing it up in his Jackson playboat. Devin has told me Henry is ripping it up in the surf. He's still a little shy and feels embarrassed if others are around, keeping him dropping into holes he can handle but may swim out of. Hmm, sounds like me. Devin is hoping to encourage Henry that it's OK to swim out a hole that most people are just gonna be impressed he was willing to give a try. We all swim and he's got plenty of time to work on exiting sticky holes for sure!!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

TEVA Games -Weekend

When I talked with Devin this evening after getting back from my fabulous weekend boating on Upper Quartsville twice, camped up along it and then fired off Canyon Creek lower 5 at 2.0' Thanks Lisa for putting the idea together and Chris Arnold for driving and that amazing second lap on Quartsville in 38 minutes!! Taking out just above the bridge in water rapid.

Oh wait, I just got a wee side tracked? At the TEVA game. Devin had decided to not compete in the steep creek race or playboating competition but he did the 8-ball race and downriver race. In the downriver he came in 30th out of 45 competitors of mostly adult men. Tao Berman took home 1st in the race. The 8-ball Devin raced and took 3rd in his heat of 4 paddlers. It took 2nd or better to advance but he beat Rush Sturgis so he just just happy with that!! Brad Ludden tried taking him out in competition hole but Devin dodged him. Todd Anderson took home the 1st place on 8-ball. Todd and Tao are just cleaning house at TEVA.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Video of Devin and Todd Anderson on Homestake Creek

This is a video Devin sent me link to last night of one of his runs down Homestake Creek the day prior to the race. Devin was working with Todd Anderson on lines as you can see in the video. Todd and Devin eddie out while others continue down river. You'll notice in the second sequence on video that there is a cameraman on a zip line catching footage of Devin running a section. I believe Devin or Austin said LiquidLogic had a crew doing some filming.

The video is put together my Mike Hyde. Henry's father that Devin is hanging in CO with. I'm also told Mike's band is used as the soundtrack for the video!! Nice job Mike. I jealous of all of you at TEVA as we speak!! Oh, well? Devin's having fun and as a parent that's what matters:)

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Devin hits TEVA

Devin's trip to Colorado started out a little rocky with him getting sick the second day he was with the Hyde family in Denver. Much like a repeat of his trip last year with sam Drevo when Devin got sick on the way through Idaho heading to Colorado for the Jr Olypmics. Tuesday he was much better and got in a run down a man made course where he got in another swim!! Once again with a good excuse. He claims while surfing a wave, he had thrown his paddle into the eddie and when he later flipped, carped a few hand rolls and pulled his skirt. I tell ya. Playboating is dangerous!! Although, in all honesty. I'm glad he's gotten a few swims in lately. Even though they have been in mild whitewater. It's a really important thing be use to swimming with your gear. At some point, you're gonna be swimming in a hole or down a class V and be freaked out. Even more than mormal!! This time I don't think the booty beverage was enforced!?

Wednesday morning the Hydes and Devin headed towards Vail and a condo they'll be staying in during the TEVA games. Devin also had time to check out Homestake Creek. The site for the steep creek competition. A nice 450 fpm run that is less than one mile in length. Devin hooked up with Todd Anderson and others for a few laps down the creek that is flowing at around 120cfs. Apparently things went good with the exception of the last manky drop. "shit of a rapid". This rapid is giving everyone trouble and it will be Devin's biggest goal to figure out the best way to hit the line though it.

Highlights for Devin on top of competing and getting on new runs is the people he's getting to meet and paddle with. He told me he met Shane Benedict of LiquidLogic, Brad Ludden of First Descents and pro kayaker just to name a few. I'm told Devin had a camera taped onto his Chico for both runs today!! Hopefully I'll get to see the runs.

Tomorrow morning, Devin is planning on waking up early to get a lap or two before sign ups with Todd Anderson and Tao Berman!! Two great competitors that have a great training regiment when it comes to races like Homestake. Tao took first on it last year!!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Devin's getting ready for Colorado

We picked up a pair of Salamander Kayak Bags from Aldercreek Kayak to ship off Devin's Pocket Rocket and Chico Jefe for his 16 day trip with The Hyde family and compete at TEVA and Fibark competitions. Young Henry Hyde, age 8, should have a fun time working with Devin while he's there. The last time they were together they both ended up with mohawks!!!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Map of the Velsesia Whitewater

I found this great map of the area in Northern Italy that I was in.