Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Ryan Scott's trailer clip for Northwest Video ScrapbookVI

Awesome clip with Devin's first run on the L-Dub, that is just a part of Ryan Scott's new video that is premiering in Boise, ID this weekend. We'll have to wait till the Clackamas Whitewater Festival May 17-18 for our chance to see it in it's entirety in P-Town. From what I here it'll be worth the wait!!

Good news, is that it'll be an all-ages showing!!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

EJ's pics of Devin the L-Dub

These are all amazing shots that EJ Etherington shot of Devin on his first run on the Little White.

Devin scouting Spirit and Chaos (the only two he didn't run)

Devin at S-Turn
Devin running StovePipe
Devin at Boulder Sluice
Devin in Island Rapid

Monday, April 28, 2008

L-Dub "Devin style"

Ryan Scott doing it right!!
Jarrod, umm, Not so right? But great AT product placement at least!!
Jesse Coombs on Spirit Falls. This place is more amazing in person that any picture could do justice.
Sunday, Devin finally hopped on the Little White Salmon River with a solid crew consisting of Austin, Ryan Scott, Keel, Jarod, Lana, Geoff, EJ Etherington. Level was at a perfect 3.1' for a first timer. Devin ended running every single drop on the run with the exception of Spirit Falls!! I was told by the crew that he did a awesome job on the whole run. A very big thanks to Austin for showing Devin the lines down the LW, Ryan Scott for being interested in taking Devin down it and the rest for giving him a amazing crew to keep him loose and enjoying this first time experience.

The old question of, "should Devin run the LW", was answered this weekend. The answer is YES!!

Hopefully I'll get the pics from the trip from Keel, EJ and Lana here soon to post.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Klamath and Scott River Pics

The kayaks getting strapped down onto the raft trailer for our trip down the Klamath. It was nice when we decided to use the trailer that brought all the kayaks to Ashland in the first place.
Devin and Robbie having a little fun boxing at the party Saturday night. All had a good time. As you can tell by all the smiles though Robbie did end up with a little shiner. Devin got the light gloves and Robbie had the thick padded ones. Probably a good idea with the way the night went.
Ty running a narrow line beteen the boulders after running the main line through a sticky hole Devin got worked in for a second or two in the playboat he was in on the Scott River..
Paul Guinea running the same line on the Scott River
Devin playing in a hole myself, Paul, Ty and Devin spent a fair amount of time in. Instead of racing we opted for a fun day on the water.

Canyon Creek Race TR

It's been a few since the Canyon Race and I have yet to put anything up on the blog. Not sure why it took so long but here goes.

With the race coming up we had spent a few days during the week after work and many weekends getting laps in on Canyon Creek at several different flows to get a good memory of the rapids and the ideal lines for those flows. With Canyon being rain and snow melt fed it would be a guess as to what the rain gods would deal us on race day. What we ended up was nothing but spectacular. Weather turned out being close to 80 degrees. The water level was 3-4" below the unit. A great flow that would cover a lot of the rocks, make the holes just sticky enough to mess with those not familiar to the creek at that flow which proved an important strategy. Many good boaters got ate by the hole at the bottom of the boulder garden. One side note: while every drop on the run has at least one name, several 2. The boulder garden is just that. "The boulder garden with the hole at the bottom" Why is that? Several have commented,"it the only boulder garden on the run!". There is only one waterfall, "Big Kahuna". Why does it have two names it goes by. The world will never know:)

Anywho, back to the story. The evening prior to the race. I got a Migraine. Something I get to deal with unfortunately. It attacked me just as I was getting off work so I look my meds and made a run for home while I could still see where the heck I was going. Turn the lights off, crawl into bed and sleep for as long as I can usually is my only defense. It worked and by 9pm I was able to drive over to pick Devin up from his moms and back to my place and go back to bed. The next morning I could only hope would treat me well enough to at the least get Devin up to the race. If I ran Canyon myself I didn't care. I had not planned on racing but I did want to see him race at some point as well as get some shots.

By the time we drove to the take-out I was feeling 95% sure I'd be heading down the run. Yippee!! Thanks Imatrex!!

Once we got shuttled up to the put in after getting Devin signed up. Shuttle provided by Seattle Raft and Kayak and Next Adventure. We got geared up and made our way down the creek towards the first of the bigger rapids, "Swizzle Sticks". This would prove to be the first of many rapids that I immediately could tell Devin was having an off day for any number of reasons. Most likely just thinking too much about the race and lines down each drop. He dropped into the first hole in the entance and got a little surf session before pulling his way out only to drop into the big hole midway down the main part of the rapid. Once again he worked his way out but geez! This has never happened on the 10-12 previous runs in the past 3 months. I chatted with Devin for a minute or two seeing if he was OK and he claimed nothing was bugging him. "50-50" and "Terminator" didn't give him any problem and we made our way to "Prelude" or "Prelude to Thrasher". This drop changes quite a lot with different flows at 3-4" below the unit it tends to give boaters a bit of trouble. It's one of the most portaged drops and the only one that I have had the fortunate enjoyment of getting worked in without safety in place and swam out of. Not the best place to swim I might add with "Thrasher " awaiting 40 yards downstream. While Devin styled the drop as he usually does. I got flipped punching the hole and was glad to roll and pull myself out with the same stroke to paddle away from it. Dave Gridley who was next to run it after seeing myself and apparently the guy prior to me do the same things quickly paddled across above the drop. Got out of his boat and portaged it. Dave is a much better boater than myself by far but I'm trying to push myself to run it. If not, I will start portaging it every time and that's not cool with me. I believe 8-10 people got worked and swam out of "Prelude" during the race. A few boat even ran "Thrasher" before getting to the bank.

Race time: The racers were released every 60 seconds and they could step up in any order to the starting line. Devin was somewhere in the first 3rd to go. That made me feel good. He was relaxed and not nervous like I'd be in his place. I wish I had his nerves at time. Mike Long was the starter and someone Devin really respects though they've never boated together. Mike is in a lot of trip reports on Devin's Bible you could say. Though Mike told me a while back at Pint Night to stop letting Devin read the reports. He knows all the creeks within a few hour drive and has a mental list of ones someday he wants to get on. One's he would not know of if such a site didn't exist.

I stayed at "Thrasher" for most of the kayaks starts so I got to see Devin run "Thrasher". Which to me was the most important drop to nail. He styled it as he has usually in part thanks to Dave Hoffman showing him his line down it and it seems to work quite well for Devin as well. I cheered him on after the drop as he paddled towards the boulder garden and he was gone. I knew I would not get to know how he did for some time and I was OK with that. He knows the lines and there was safety set at all the drops in case.

As the kayakers were winding down, I headed down river to "Big Kahuna Falls" to catch the rafts run it. I knew "Thrasher" would not be a problem for them so this should provide the best viewing of some carnage or styling of the 20' falls. It for sure gave a little of both. A little MiniMe missed the boof and plugged and flipped while the team that won from Seattle dialed the boof in like it was a hardshell kayak. A few others did the same.

In the end Devin ran a great race with a time of 6 minutes 6 seconds. Good enough respectivily for 15th in the Mens Pro Division or time wise 8th or 9th in the Advanced class that had 36 competitors in it. There was no youth class. There was only two this year. Devin and Robbie Virostek, age 17. Unless more race next year Devin would be the only youth so I'm guessing he will competing in the Mens class till he is truely a "Man" The only line has told me he missed was "Kahuna" where he didn't quite catch the eddie above the lip he uses to line up the boof flake with and plugged the drop getting pushed into the left undercut wall. Just getting over to the left side of the falls costs you 10 seconds. His time was within .2 seconds of Robbies.

To add to the fun after the race we all headed to Mike Olsen's place for a big party he throws after the Canyon Race's in past years and this one did not disappoint.

A special thanks to Ted Keyes, Devin's LiquidLogic Rep. for getting with Sam Drevo to loan us the Remix59 to train in and race down Canyon Creek. It was the a perfect fit for such a race. I believe I saw 3-4 of the Remix's out there in all there different sizes.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Monday, April 14, 2008

Canyon Creek Race

Unknown paddler getting freestyle points at Thrasher
Dave Gridley on Thrasher
James Bagley on Thrasher
Roberta stylin' Thrasher
Devin on doing a great job with the race gitters at Thrasher

Canyon Creek Slideshow Video

Thought this was a great to view race as I got to see it!!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Canyon Creek Levels

With the race two days away. The water level is awesome and hanging around 4" below the unit!! Forecast doesn't predict rain so the water levels should stay steady with the snow melt as weather is suppose to warm up slightly though Saturday with possible highs of 74 degrees. Sun and water!? Now all we'll need is a little carnage!!

Amboy gauge currently is 4.8'.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Illinois R. (Green Wall) with and without Harvey's

Green Wall as it is now with Harvey's Hole. Note the kayaker is just above the hole that's new. Flow of around 1200cfs. Kayaker is Brad Bassi with photo provided by Steve Stuckemeyer.
This is a picture I took last year of the bottom at Green Wall. Flow was 2400cfs.
This is a picture from last year of the bottom of the Green Wall.

Note there is no big raft eating hole.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Illinois River side creek slide video

Long description for a series of shots of Devin on the low water slide.

Canyon Creek Exrteme Race (This Saturday!!)

This weekend will be Devin's first kayak race in the NW. While we don't focus on racing normally Canyon Creek has a special place in our hearts and for the little guy to even be allowed to race with his age makes it even more cool. If only there was a youth category regardless of how many 17 and unders show. Luke seems to be interested in adding the category next year so we'll see.

Devin's looking good on his lines and yesterday just the two of us did a quick lap and I got to try and keep up with him through the boulder gardens and with the Remix59 and his strength that didn't work out so we'll for me. I got to see him around the corner of boulders as he dropped over the next ledge. It was proof to me that he knows the lines for sure and will be safe on his own during the race. Of course there is safety all over the course but I hate to trust someone else with his life or safety.

This week will most likely be spending time at the gym a few nights getting ready!!

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Illinois River Trip (Devin's 1st time down)

Devin sitting on top of this slide we came across the first day of the Illy
Devin about half way down the slide. Next time hopefully it'll be juicy and a waterfall
Devin boofing a medium sized pour over in the Remix59. photo's by Corey Morton

Last year I had the opportunity to get down the Illinois River for my first time and while I'd wanted to take Devin down with me I was concerned about the run being a class IV-V overnighter that's really remote. What if something happened or he was in over his head? The levels had been rising that trip and we estimate it was around 2000-2400 cfs on the gauge above the run. One thing about the Illy is that there are a lot of waterfalls from creeks screaming with water after a rain. The gauge is only a reference tool and seems far from accurate to flows once on the run. The main rule is that you don't put on if it's raining or a storm is rolling in. The river flashes up quickly due to the steepness of the canyon and soil on the banks doesn't absorb the water resulting in the levels jumping from a low 800cfs to an out of control 4-8000cfs in several hours. The class V (green wall) has claimed lives of people attempting it at higher flows. From what I was told a group tried to eddie out above the Green Wall and found there wasn't any and washed into it.

This wasn't that sort of levels by any means but we were dealing with a small chance of rain and the levels were currently sitting around 1200cfs and predected to rise to 1750cfs or so. Cold, rainy but it's the Illy and I'm use to multi-day's in the rain.


We considered playboats with the lower level but this being my second time down and at half the flow I was told the run would be pretty mellow but I wanted to be conservative. So we opted to big boats down and Devin borrowed a LiquidLogic Remix59 from Sam Drevo at eNRG Kayaking, who is letting Devin train for the Canyon Creek Race in the boat. The boat proved to be a great boat for the run with it's 9' length Devin was intentionally plowing through big hole, held a line well, boofed some of the biggest pour overs we had to date and with planing hull it's surfed on the big glassy waves effortlessly.

In all it was a great trip with a really fun group of friends and I'm bummed to be back home already sitting in from of the computer typing this. Oh well, we should be heading to do a lap on Canyon Creek later today!!

One note to mention about the Illinois' (Green Wall) is that while everyone usually spends 10-15 scouting it you'll want to walk down to the bottom of the rapid and see a new feature. (Harvey's) The river bed changed and there is now a huge stomping hole were there wasn't prior. We got to watch Mike Evan's rodeo his small cat (12' Sotar) for a minute till the bull tossed him out. Good news both Mike and his gear flushed right out. Talking with others camping below Green Wall several cats and rafts flipped on this new feature. Me and Devin, the only two kayakers that ran the Green Wall found sneak on far river left that required a commiting ferry that if went bad sent you right into the hole. We both hit our lines!!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Pics from Canyon Creek

photo's are courtesy of EJ Etherington

Devin boofing Champagne
Lining up for Hammering Spot
Getting his boof on at Hammering Spot
Airing it out on the 8' ledge oddly named by the poor person that was the probe the first time Canyon Cr was ran. If I remember correct Ron Reynier's crew was the First Descent of this now classic.