Searching for Bubbles

Squirtboating from a life long mystery hound

Chaco Mighty Sandal!!

As a World Kayak Ambassador and a tester for Chaco I get to try out many different kinds of sandals and shoes.
This year I was sent the new Mighty Sandal which is part of their new Near Earth Line of sandals.
Chacos have long been known to last forever but they are also fairly heavy.
These new sandals remedy this…
I am a flip-flop guy when it comes to casual, everyday sandal wearing.  The only time I put on a full sandal is in fishing or whitewater  situations.  This new sandal is the first full sandal that actually feels like a flip-flop, that is, I forget I am wearing it.  They are super light, flexible sole, new strap system that moves easily as you walk to loosen and tighten as needed.
Now I have a sandal that is truly an everyday, every situation sandal.  From the office, backyard, dog walks, river bank fly-fishing, hiking to SUP Lake Tahoe, to and from the river while whitewater kayaking, and of course the evening stroll to my favorite stool at the local breweries.
Noah Fraser
World Kayak Ambassador
Reno, NV

Slackine Break

View from Work

Walking the Dogs

Cowbell–Nolichucky River, TN

I need more Cowbell…

 YouTube Preview Image

Cowbell is at the take out for the Gorge section of the Nolichucky river in eastern TN.  Several years ago a hurricane brought the river up to 90,000 cfs and drastically changed the riverbed.  Cowbell is not as easy or good as it once was and now needs higher flows as well (2000cfs).  For a long time, Angst Kayak would hold the US World Mystery Championships at Cowbell.  The following videos are from my last three rides during the 2003 competition where I placed 3rd.

YouTube Preview Image YouTube Preview Image

 YouTube Preview Image

Barking Dog Headcam

I have a great little Canon waterproof camera and I decided to strap it to my helmet and do some mysteries. Had a pretty good day at Barking Dog on the South Fork of the American River about 6 weeks ago. Be careful that you don’t get dizzy watching the video as there are many many spins while down in a mystery.

YouTube Preview Image

This trip the lower seam wasn’t as good but the upper one next to the hole was giving up some exciting rides.

The Washup

This is a cool move that isn’t really that hard but was never really worked on by anyone.  We’ve been doing the washout for a while now, an oververt clean bow screw off of a cartwheel or other move, but hadn’t done it on the stern end.  That is what the washup it, an oververt clean stern screw from a cartwheel.

 

This move is also called an unarmed bandit when it is completed from a completely still flat position.  It is much easier to do with the momentum from a cartwheel.  Sometimes I'll even do this move in my playboat to freak surface boaters out :-)

Later

Noah

The Whirlygig

This move is the only move that can only only be done in a squirtboat.  Oververt cartwheels are so cool, screw school.  Start with a bow screw to stern screw and do it again. yup yup

Please enable Javascript and Flash to view this Flash video.

Get a squirt boat and then do this, no one else can. I would say it is a panty dropper except the number of women watching squirtboating comps is severely limited, not to say it doesn't work, just be prepared.

Enjoy

Noah

The Weasel, Oregon

Oregon, the land of rain, cool temps, and amazing rivers.  Big deep rivers, full of “baby heads,” geologist term for glacial rocks.  The weasel is a world class convergence that gives up deep deep rides in a super clear and cold arena.  Catfish with albino heads come right up to your squirtboat and the weasels roll up when you least expect it.  The visuals are amazing, get it!!!

Please enable Javascript and Flash to view this Flash video.

There is a time when doing mysteries, called the trance, the weasel with its cold water, clear visuals, and multiple zombie mysteries that just take you there.

Last weekend was my second visit to the weasel, for the first weasel gathering of mystery boaters.  We had a great competition and gathering, I got second, although I think Joel "Diesel", and Scott "Weaver" were too drunk to really compete.

Enjoy

Noah

The Bubbler, VA

Hanging by the fire with lots of good friends and good beerJim Snyder @ the Bubbler afterparty
The Bubbler Squirt Gathering of Friends has been happening for several years outside of Blacksburg, VA. It is a great event at an awesome spot. The competition is unique in that there are two spots, left and right, off of the same central eddy. Each competitor gets 5 rides on each side and the totals are added together. We also have a great tandom class with the teams doing tandom mysteries on each side.

 

Please enable Javascript and Flash to view this Flash video.

Bubbler 1 gives up 15 second mysteries, and Bubbler 2 can put out 25 second mysteries when you get lucky. This little video was taken with what I like to call a chest cam, basically my camera tied onto my chest. Eventually I’ll put up some video of the competitions but for now enjoy the bubbles.

Noah

Sweet Cheeks, TN

Sweet Cheeks, a sideways curling wave that sucks you down straight to the bottom of the river. The river is only about 8 feet deep and is one solid slab of rock. Sometimes you get sucked straight down and flat pin on the bottom of the river for a few minutes. This is such a great spot on a great squirt river.

Please enable Javascript and Flash to view this Flash video.

Most mysteries here are less than 10 seconds but it is a really cool feeling, almost like surfing in the deep.

Enjoy,
Noah

The Green Zone, CA

Bubbles in the Green Zone, Trinity River CA

Driving home across California this July from a trip down the Oregon Coast I spotted a spot on the Trinity River that looked good from the road.  We (wife and I) pulled off at the Bagdad river access point and I geared up and she swam down a couple of hundred yards to the spot.  Turned out the river was running around 550 cfs and was super clear and cold, great for summer in Cali.  The spot was only about 6-8 feet deep but was super powered up, it was very similair to Borobus in Japan which I visited last fall.  The rides were easy to get and fun to just screw down into the seam with about six spins before it took you.  This video shows that really well.  I think a little more or less water would make this spot really really good, but who knows????

The Green Zone, Trinity River CA

The Green Zone, Trinity River CA

Anyway, if you are driving through the Trinity Gorge definitly check it out.  The mysteries were not epic but everything else was really cool.  Enjoy the little video and pictures from the Green Zone.

Please enable Javascript and Flash to view this Flash video.

Enjoy,

Noah

 

 

Halls of Karma, WV

Halls of Karma (Halls) is located deep in the New River Gorge, WV.  It is a very powerful spot with deep deep whirlpools.  I’m still confused as to how the Karma thing works because when I used to Raft Guide there we told people that if their Karma was bad it would keep them down a long time.  But as a Squirtboater I want to stay down deep for a while.  That said, the halls can be scary deep, sometimes the whirlpools suck you down until you are traveling through a corridor of massive boulders with a small amount of sunlight coming in through the whirlpool way above your head.  There are even stories of squirtboats exploding at the seams from a super deep mystery here.

Here is a little video from a few years ago when I took off 10 days from work and just squirted my way around West By God VIrginia with some friends from Great Britian and the US.

Please enable Javascript and Flash to view this Flash video.

Enjoy,

Noah