Friday, September 28, 2012

Washington DC- Great Falls

And so the Tits Deep Tour continues and we have come to rest in America's capital city- Washington DC! We are staying with an old slalom friend Ashlee and her partner Ashlee. Washinton DC seems like a nice city for its size. We went into the centre the other day and checked out some sites and caught up with some other slalom friends for lunch.
Yesterday we met up with Aaron Mann, Erin Clansey, Geoff Calhoun and a dude Nathan and did some laps on Washington DC's white-water playgroud- The Great Falls. The Great Falls are on the Potomoc river and lead down into a very scenic gorge and then finally to a cute little slalom training site. There are several channels on the Great Falls and we started with the Maryland side. This had one beautiful 20 or so footer which gave a super clean boof. Then some fun rapids followed. Next we hit the middle channel known as Grace, this was a fun little kicker drop. Then finally we ran the right channel- Virginia. This had lots of sweet lines on the top rapids and a super clean 20 footer to finish. This drop was called the 'spout'. I was super stoked to be routing off the drops and had so much fun playing with the lines. One of my runs down the centre line at the top of Virginia was a bit off and I had a good working in 'u hole'. I managed to work my way out of the hole but was pushed up against the wall- carnage!

We went back and spent the day running the Great Falls again today. The flow on our first visits was 3.1 and on the final day it bumped up to 3.2 which made for a noticable difference. More sweet lines were had and just another mint day kayaking with good people.
Photo Crdit: Erin Clansey

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

South East- Gauley Fest & New River

50cent coffee, cheap beer, and lots of people with funny accents...A week here in Fayetteville has been filled with a run and climb on the endless wall, some high water runs down the New River Gorge and more laps on the Upper Gauley. I have now paddled the Upper Gauley in a long green boat, creek boat, playboat and playboat with handpaddles! There has been a sweet crew of boaters around so Katrina and I have had the joy of paddling with Bryan, Erin, Dave, Clay, Emily and the crew from Kentucky and the MKC/OWLies. This has meant that we have had loads of different lines and been trying out the many little slot moves and side boofs. So yesterday I was following a little close behind Katrina and I tripped on my paddle and got pinned upside down...a little bit of a shitty situation right above an undercut...fortunately I managed to escape with a little swim before I was eaten by the rock.
Anyway another sweet week came to an end.
Big thanks to Bryan, Eileen and Matt for having us to stay.
We have now boosted to Americas capital city- Washington DC to run the Great Falls and visit some old slalom friends. We are staying in slalom central with Ashlee and Ashlee

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

United States of AMERICA!

And so the journey back to the United States of AMERICA begun! Louise Urwin, Katrina Van Wijk and I piled into Katrina's little Element and did 3hour driving shifts across the Canadian and American border and into the States. After driving through New York, Pennsylvania and Maryland to reach West Virginia! Along the way we stopped off to paddle the Upper Yaugh which is a dam fed grade 3/4 creek that has limited releases. We then came to set up camp in the town of Summervile, the host of the annual Gauley Festival. The Gauley Festival is one of the biggest kayak festivals in America and probably in the world. With loads of venues set up for the different businesse in the kayak industry we were able to checkout the latest gears on the market. The Gauley River is totally awesome! It has an Upper, middle and lower section and hosts many good rapids and features. It is basically a high volume creek with beautiful scenery as it rests in a nice valley with lots of green trees and vegetation. We ran the Upper section in playboats and creekboats on the Friday and Saturday's with the OWL crew that had also come to paddle the river. There were heaps of rapids that had multiple choices for lines which was great as you could make the run as hard or easy as you like.
On the Monday Katrina and I raced in the Gauley Festival race event which was held on the Upper Section of the Gauley River. Katrina took out the long boat Womens class in her Green Boat with a time of 57 mintures, while I took out the Womens class in the the Short boat division with a time of just over 1hour and 1minute.
Now Katrina and I are staying with Ielene, Bryan Jennings, Matt S and Bryan Kirks house in Fayetteville. It is really nice to have somewhere to hideout well the rain thunders down. We will be hoping it rains so we can jump on some creeks before getting back on the Gauley River on Friday!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Mission on

Canada has been totally awesome!Loaded with maple syrup, poutine, moosetracks icecream, grizzly bears and beautiful people I have had a great first visit, I am sure it will not be my last.
To end my trip here I celebrated with a wine and cheese sleepover on Miami beach of the Ottawa river. Lou Urwin rallyed a sweet crew and we raged till dawn.
I am now ready to hit the road and head back to the United States of America with my good friend, Katrina Van Wijk! We have a sick roady planned and will be joined by Louise Urwin this weekend at the Gauley Festival in West Virginia. We will then head down to the South East to paddle the Green and rivers around.
So pumped for the next adventures! Back in my creekboat and on the road:)
Big Thank you to everyone here in Canada that made me feel so welcome. I had an absolute blast instructing on the Madawaska river and met some really nice people in the process. I feel like my kayak instruction has come along way as I have learnt a lot from all of my work colleagues.
Biggest Thanks must go out to Claudia, Dirk, Steffi and Katrina Van Wijk!!! They have taken me in and really looked after me, and of course showed me a great time on the river, at the Wilno and in their little paradice. Its been a privilege to stay with them here in this beautiful valley.

Note- People here don't understand my Kiwi very well, I mean to say:
Go Left not Go lift
My Girls not My gills
A needle not A nettle
Sweet as not Sweet ass
Kiss your deck not Kiss your dick
Pull your deck not pull your dick

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Raquette Race- NEW YORK!

After the final week of instruction at MKC we spent the week cleaning up and closing the resort. It has been an awesome experience for me working at MKC and I really appreciate the opportunity I had to work there alongside many good instructors.
Sunday night Katrina, Joel K, Seth and I headed into Ottawa and stayed the night enroute to the Raquette Race in the US state of New York!
A quick practice lap down the rowdy class four run prepared us for the exciting race that was held on the Monday. About a 7minute race run which included loads of slides and drops. With only 1 practice lap and being the only ladies Katrina and I decided to run the race together. It was super sweet! My lines in the race were not as smooth as my practice run but I was sooo stoked to be back on a creek! This creek kind of reminded me of the Wairoa in NZ, although it had bigger slides and more burl.
Got me pumped for the upcoming missions!
Now I am back on the Ottawa river for my final week here in Ontario before heading down to Pennsylvania for the Gauley Festival. Stoked to have my sister Izzy here this week!:)
Photo credit: Wiseacre gardens.