Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Green River Narrows

Probable the most documented class 5 river in the world, and for good reason. The Green River Narrows hosts a pile of photogenic and challenging rapids.

After paddling the Green for six years, I am still supper excited for my next lap. I'm not quite sure why I always find myself back at the Green, it could be. The nervous anticipation of running the big 3, Go Left, Gorilla, and Sunshine. Paddling with some amazing friends that were introduced to me in the parking lot. Doing switch back tours in the Wrec Center. Finding that allusive eddy. Or cleaning up that always problematic Frankenstein line. What ever it is, I am always happy to get back to such a high quality river and paddling with equally high quality friends.

Check out some helmet cam footage montaged together over a few weeks of laps this spring.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Cheoah, North Fork of the French Broad, and the Little River Canyon

Chris Baer, Charging the middle line at Bear Creek Falls on the Cheoah
Chris Baer, Charging the middle line at Bear Creek Falls on the Cheoah
Here is a quick kayak video from North Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama, paddling with a super wide variety of my favorite characters.

Chris Baer, sitting atop an amazing rubber chicken launcher
Chris Baer, sitting atop an amazing rubber chicken launcher
The North Fork of the French Broad
Paddling with Paul Buttler, and Hank Rankin is a blast, they are young and full of go getter energy. After finishing our first lap the day light was dwindling. I almost couldn't believe my lips, "We ought to go for another lap". I was pushing the day light again. We slid off the embankment for another hot lap, we had barely finished the last major drop and it was basically dark. We bebop-ed our way through the long run out and hiking up the takeout path in the pitch dark.


Cheoah
Be careful out there, coming down my very first ever Cheoah lap, there was a large tree pinned just below the surface of the river. I eddied out and got on a small rock overlooking the strainer. I was absolutely disgusted by what happened next, one by one and some times two at a time struggling class 3 boaters washed in to the tree and became pinned. Thankfully Andrew Holcombe, and a hand full of other kayakers had placed them self's near the strainer, and where able to pull the would be victims up and over the log. After an hour of carnage Andrews team moved down stream and left me to play with the few people making a late second lap.

A couple days later I received this email from Matt Dolian,

I just wanted to send you a quick note and tell you how great it was to see you and the other guys with the training and skills required take time out of your day on the Cheoah to make sure everyone was safe at that strainer. 

I also wanted to express how great your enthusiasm is when it comes to whitewater. Your excitement is contagious and it definitely led to me bucking up and getting my ass in a kayak. After one year of solid boating, I can honestly say it's the best thing I've done with my life and I really wanted to thank you for being a great ambassador to the sport.

Jacob Kowalewski, Brad McMillan, and Chris Baer routing through Bear Creek Falls
Jacob Kowalewski, Brad McMillan, and Chris Baer routing through Bear Creek Falls
Little River Canyon
Finishing up a great weekend on the Cheoah Wes Dewit offered up another adventure, The Little River Canyon in Alabama. The flow was exceptional low, Wes hadn't kayaked it in 10 years, and I had never seen the river. We treated it as a personal first descent scouting almost everything and realizing that the river flowed equally above and under rocks. The rapids were sieved out, with major hazards only a couple inches away. Slowly we made our way down the river, and six hours after putting on we had completed the entire 11 1/2 miles of white water.
Another Adventure brought to you by Chris Baer
Another Adventure brought to you by Chris Baer