Sunday, July 29, 2012

Vallecito


Joel Cameron sailing away on entrance falls, Chris Baer, Vallecito, water fall, CO colorado
Joel Cameron sailing away on entrance falls

Gangster rap, rowdy college kids, and a beautiful polished granite canyon. 


Life continues to amaze me, after traveling across the country I stopped into Durango CO for a quick visit and immediately was given a tour of the local goods. Vallecito Canyon might be the best mile of creek boating in CO, the drops are plentiful, the access is just tedious enough to keeps mobs out, and the quality is a good as it gets. 

Hiking a mile into the wilderness, Chris Baer, Blunt Family Paddle, Wave Sport, view, Valliceto, CO, colorado,
Hiking a mile into the wilderness
The hike into the canyon is a mile long stroll up every inch of gradient you are about to paddle down. A good backpack system is strongly recommended, and making more then one lap in a day takes determination. 

Joel Cameron, heading deeper into Vallecito canyon, Chris Baer, CO, colorado,
Joel Cameron, heading deeper into Vallecito canyon
The Canyon is pretty and pretty remote, there are only a few ok options for hiking out. Make sure the crew is strong and that someone has the lines dialed. I personally like getting super vague beta from Tony Miely. 

Cruise Quenelle, buried in Trash Can, Chris Baer, CO, colorado werner, green boat, dagger,
Cruise Quenelle, buried in Trash Can
Even the best boaters get crushed, come prepared. Cody Beach got rolled in Trash Can, and destroyed his helmet and sprained his neck. It took the rest of the crew close to an hour to help Cody out of the canyon. Thankfully he was beat up but alright.

Reece Hanson finding his stroke on Entrance Falls, Chris Baer,  Vallecito, water fall, co , colorado
Reece Hanson finding his stroke on Entrance Falls
When it's good it's great, Vallecito usually puts on a show. Amazing boaters in an amazing setting.

Dealing with the mank and logs in Trash Can, chris baer, CO , colorado , vallecito,
Dealing with the mank and logs in Trash Can

The boys finishing up another evening lap, enjoying cold beers and another amazing sunset, CO colorado, vallecito, chris baer
The boys finishing up another evening lap, enjoying cold beers and another amazing sunset
another adventure brought to you by Chris Baer
another adventure brought to you by Chris Baer

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Tallulah Fest and a test run in the Recon and Ethos.

Unknown Paddler making his way Right of the Thing! GA, Georgia, Chris Baer, Oceana, Tallulah, Fest
Unknown Paddler making his way Right of the Thing!

Tallulah fest

Paddling with a ton of buddies from all over the world on a great river is always a blast, especially when there is a couple fresh boats from Wave Sport to test out. Bryan Kirk, Chris Wing and I set out on day two of Tallulah Fest, with a second generation Recon ( the new creek boat ), an Ethos ( the new cross over boat ), and a Project X. Needless to say the quiver was loaded and it was about time to test out some new Boats.

Walking down the immense stair case to the put in, Bryan, Chris, and I were hounded with questions, What boat is that? How big is it? When is it going to come out? I want one!

Bryan Kirk, Tallulah, GA, Georgia, Recon, Creek Boat, Chris Baer
Bryan Kirk launching the new Recon Creek Boat
I started in the Ethos cross over boat, which was a quickly produced prototype boat. The out fitting felt great, and the shape looked good; the only problem was the quick activating drop down skeg didn't have a control. A few strips of duck tape later and I was feeling confident that the skeg wasn't going to self deploy half way down Oceana... I was wrong.

Upon sliding off the put in stairs into the river I felt a very odd sensation, the back of the boat wouldn't go anywhere. The duck tape had removed itself and the skeg that is supposed to lower a few inches into the water, was submersed 18 inches. The thought of hiking the boat to the top of the stairs was ridiculous. After a quick deliberation Bryan Kirk and I decided to shove the skeg back up into the boat and to break little branches off on both sides of it. The thought was that we could wedge the Skeg back up and into the boat. I was pretty sure this plan wasn't going to work, but to my surprise, the little sticks held way better then the Duck tape.  The Skeg stayed up, and I got to paddle the huge Ethos Cross Over boat down the Tallulah gorge.

Unknown Paddler in a Dagger Green Boat entering the THING Georgia, GA, Chris Baer, Oceana
Unknown Paddler in a Dagger Green Boat entering the THING
Paddling down, we took the time to check out each others boats and give some great feedback that will certainly be used in the final products.

Unknown Kayaker blasting past the Thing on Oceana, Tallulah, fest, Chris Baer, GA , georgia,
Unknown Kayaker blasting past the Thing on Oceana

The Recon

This boat is going to be amazing, the tiered rail on the back of the boat allows it to aggressively carve. The nose is soft with plenty of rocker to get up and over anything in it's path. The best part is there is plans for a 90ish gallon model that is going to be great for self support, the big guys out there, or any one that love to float supper high.

Bryan Kirk with a prototype Recon at the base of Tallulah falls, GA Georgia, Chris Baer, Fest, kayak
Bryan Kirk with a prototype Recon at the base of Tallulah falls

The Ethos

I almost hate to call this a Cross Over boat, except for the fact that it has a drop down skeg. I truly could paddle this down most class 5 and it will be an exceptional 5- muti-day self support boat. I am already dreaming of a solo self support Grand Canyon trip.

Check out what Wave Sport has to say about the Ethos, along with some other video of it charging down Tallulah Geoge here.


Most importantly well at the Tallulah check out the rowdy rope swing, it's right before the take out on the right. This swing is impressive!

Another adventure brought to you by Chris Baer
Another adventure brought to you by Chris Baer