Riot Kayak News at Worldkayak.com

Just another Worldkayakblogs.com weblog

Sad Times for the Sarapiqui

Following a 6.1 magnitude earthquake centered at Poas Volcano on January 8 the Sarapiqui, a classic Costa Rican river, was transformed from a beautiful clean river to a giant mudslide of sludge.  While trying to get some beta by talking with some locals on the Upper Pacuare, we were told the Sarapiqui was no longer runnable but the other rivers in the area were still in good shape.  We were interested in a couple of the other runs so took off for La Virgen the next morning.

We pulled into town to find very few people around.  After checking in with some local rafting companies we discovered that many places were closed due to damages from the earthquake and that they were no longer able to raft popular stretches of river.  They had been working on finding alternative runs for the area to keep their businesses alive.  We were invited to join several local companies and the Red Cross to do the first run of the Upper Sarapiqui since the quake.  We immediately volunteered to help.

The drive to the put in was eye-opening, with areas that had been destroyed taped off, Red Cross and local church volunteers handing out food and supplies to those who needed them, and reporters everywhere begging for interviews.  The extent of the damage was unclear as villages had been buried by mudslides, dozens of local citizens were confirmed dead and even more were still reported as missing.

On the way to the put-in

On the way to the put-in

We arrived at the put-in to find that the bridge across the river had disappeared.  This would be something to watch for downstream.  The organizer gave the group a safety talk including instructions that we were not to play, our job was to make sure everyone got down the river safely, look for debris, animals, houses, cars, and possibly bodies.  We were to stick close together, one kayak between each raft and signal if we noticed anything strange or vultures circling an area.

Washed out bridge at the put-in

Washed out bridge at the put-in

We put on and headed downstream.  The river was very muddy, continuous, and had very few eddies.  We found the remnants of the bridge in the rapid around the corner.  The rafters all hopped out to scout, decided on the best route through the debris, and made it through with no problems.

Making our way down

Making our way down

We continued down, stopping several times to check out demolished farms, huge log piles, and areas the vultures seemed interested in. Fortunately the only thing found was remains of animals swept away by the mud and logs.

One of the demolished farms.  This farmer had 80 head of cattle.

One of the demolished farms. This farmer had 80 head of cattle.

The run itself was great and the rafting companies were excited that it was clean, offering the possibility of commercial trips on this section.  With the good news of a clean run, no unfortunate findings, and only one raft flip with a quick recovery, the mission was considered a success!

The crew

The crew

For more information check out http://www.cruzroja.or.cr/ .

Upper Cherry part 2

Alex Kilyk running Perfect 20

There’s nothing like waking up below Cherry Bomb Gorge, wrapping your mind around what you have run and what you are about to.

Alex Kilyk on one of the warm up rapids below Flintstone

A downstream view of Perfect 20

Tim Robinson running West Coast Groove Tube

A rare downstream view of West Coast Groove Tube

A rare downstream view of West Coast Groove Tube

Tim Robinson dropping into one of the unamed rapids below the Double Pothole Gorge

Mr. Robinson doing what he does best

Chris Harjes enjoying some air

Tim Robinson sliding down to the next rapid…

…and dropping in

Man on the moon

Josh Bruckner styling yet another rapid

Exploding hippy fun

Just a flesh wound

Anyone want to do another lap?

Anyone want to do another lap?

Yours truely,

Daniel Glauser

Big Sandy

They Big Sandy has been called the Crown Jewel of the Cheat for many reasons, But I believe the main reason is the beauty she offers…. here are some pictures that have been taken recently Showing off some of Riots Crown Jewels 

Coop and I below Splat

Coop and me below big Splat

The Poop Shoot, shown here, is a major rush.  The center line has lots of water and feels like a beefed up version of groove tube (Green River Narrows).
until next time…

Canyon Creek Stimulus Package

Karl Moser of Team Riot recently sent me this photo of me in last year’s Canyon Creek race which was published in Canoe and Kayak magazine a few months back

Canyon Creek Race - Big Kahuna

Canyon Creek Race – Big Kahuna

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

Sadly, in the latest round of crazy weather in the NW has taken its toll on this classic run and as photographed by Ron Reynier and posted on Luke Spencer’s PDX river explorer blog, Canyon Creek now looks something like this:

Canyon Creek Log Jam

Canyon Creek Log Jam

The same dynamic nature that draws us to the river can just as easily take it away. As I begin to gear up to move back to the Portland area, I know that I’ll miss this old friend.  Although hauling these logs out seems like just the kind of project we need to get us out of this economic slow-down…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Andy

Team Riot January Birthdays

Haaaa… haaaaa… haaaaaaaa…ppy birthday to you, happy birthday to you!  Here at Team Riot we’ve successfully pulled off 7 (seven) birthdays this month.  So check ‘em out and at least offer a good spanking if not a front-back wedgie.  It’s the least we can do to appreciate the existence of our comrades.

Jan 7 – Pavel Andrassy – Check Out

Jan 11 – Chris Gallaway – Check Out

Jan 18 – Chris Stafford – Check Out

Jan 19 – Olivier Trudel-Languedoc – Check Out

Jan 20 – Drew Hayes – Check Out

Jan 21 – Daniel Windham – Check Out

Jan 31 – Arnd Shaeftlein – Check Out

Feel free to get nosy and look at our team calendar all by yourself by visiting our Calendar.

Riot Demo in the Deep South

This January, members of the Team Riot (Spencer Cooke, Daniel Windham, Chris Gallaway) took a bunch of our wonderful whitewater boats down to Athens, Georgia to try them out on some bulldogs–that would be the vibrant and whitewater-starved students of the U of Ga. It was a frozen night outside, but thankfully we had a pool to ourselves within the gargantuan Ramsey Athletic Center:

A game of red rover?

A game of Red Rover?

We Riot kayakers arrived prepared to get in the water and do some synchronized ‘yaking, but actually, the avid folks who came out from the UGA community ran away with the evening, jumping in the boats and putting them to good use. Let it be known that there is a healthy contingent of whitewater enthusiasts keeping it real in the heart of Georgia.

same great boat, just more of it.

Spencer explains the 80: same great boat, just more of it.

Them Georgians got skills. (spoken with a southern drawl)

Them Georgians got skills. (spoken with a southern drawl)

By the end of the session, we Rioters got to get in the water and play around, too. Spencer developed a radical new flatwater trick (a pool-edge rockspin thingy appropriately named the “Spencer Spin”), I got whacked in the nose while teaching a roll, and overall, it was an excellent evening. Big thanks to the bomber UGA Whitewater Club and to Sir Windham who put this all together, and then had a birthday!

The following day we celebrated Daniel’s birth at the Windham farm and then went to Cine Theater in Athens for the premiere of the first Rapid Transit DVD: The Eddy Feeling. For more on that story, click here: Rapid Transit Blog.

The Rapid Transit producers, just hanging out.

The Rapid Transit producers, just hanging out.

And here are a few more photos of those crazy Bulldogs doing what they do best, having fun in the water:

Peace from the Southeast,

Chris Gallaway

A Wet Return Home from New Zealand…

(Photo by Will Stubblefield)

The humming, tinkering and buzzing sounds coming from within, outside and/or inside an airplane is never the most comforting sound to try to fall asleep to.  I prefer falling asleep to rain.  Or snow.  Snow’s quite different though, because usually when it’s snowing, it’s really quiet outside.  So when it snows, is there really a sound to it?  Maybe if it’s snowing really massive snowflakes, or if you consider silence a sound.  Which, I guess I would…consider silence a sound, that is.  Either way, anything would’ve been better than the plane.  

But this isn’t a story about the plane ride back from New Zealand, or even about New Zealand, this is a story about the wonderous liquid I arrived to when I returned from my year abroad…

“What are you afraid of…to wake up and find out this is what dreams are made of?” I remember talking to my Mom about returning home after being gone such a long time and saying, “What would really make it all good, would be to return and have the Watauga and Linville and all my favorite runs to be running!” Zog Dogg and I living in a previously-had dream of mine, gearing up with the boys in our winter-wonderland…a far cry from the NZ summer I had just grown used to again…and for some reason just left! (Photo by Will Stubblefield)

I had actually never paddled the Doe River (TN), even with its next-door-neighbor-status/local to the Taugs and Elk.  I guess it was appropriate to come back and within a week jump on a new run in the area.  After all, one thing that became painfully clear while overseas, was how little I’d seen of my own Motherland!  That’s me, snatching me up one of dem boof strokes in one helluva gorgeous setting.  (Photo by Will Stubblefield)

Getting back in the Magnum 72 was quite interesting after leaving my 80 in NZ.  At first apprehensive, I was soon reminded why I fell in love with this boat even before the Big Boi came out.  Take one or two well-placed strokes, and the rest she takes care of for ya!  Ya Dig?  (Photo by Will Stubblefield)

After getting off the Doe, my mate Will and I decided that because of the recent rain-then-snow weather event, it would be mighty fun to see the Watauga Gorge all covered in fluffy whiteness as well.  The extra water helped make our dusk-patrol run a reality, as well as open up a few “alternative” lines.  Here I am, pulling up on a delayed boof on the Vail of Stateline Falls.  Note the moon, well into its nightly journey cross the sky!  (Photo by Will Stubblefield)

Why is it when you’re cold, often times you look sad?  Does being cold automatically mean that you’re also bummed out?  Probably not if yer a skier…or trying to build an igloo.  In this freeze frame of time, I happened to be neither a skier, trying to build an igloo, nor cold…even though one could guess (judging by this picture) I was one or all three.  The spot I’m sitting in is one of my favorite places to sit in all of North Carolina.  When I sit in that spot I know a couple of things…A) That I’m about to run one of my favorite rivers EVER (The Ville) and B) That I’m about to spend the day with some of my best friends. (Photo by Will Stubbs)

This boof is a good example of exactly why the Linville is one of my favorite rivers around.  There’s heaps of these kind of boofs all up, down and every which way on the Ville, AND they all have stunning views! (Photo by Will Stubbs)

For example, from the very same spot that the previous picture was taken, looking up, this picture was taken!  While the depth and vastness of the river valley are not illustrated to their full potential, it gives you an idea of the largeness of power the river emits through its geology.  Playing Cat and Mouse with one of my favorite mice…Adam Herzog. (Photo by Stubbs)

The last two days before classes started were spent on the local solid, the Watauga.  The Taugs is one of those runs that will forever be amazing…at high, medium and low water…in a long, short or play boat!  I can’t think of a better boat to go for my first play-run down the Taugs than my Nitro, (which I was lucky enough to find in my mate’s basement upon arrival in Boone!) The river is full of all sorts of different style ledges, all of which encourage some sort of boat manuev-a-twist action off of. (Photo by Stubbs)

Mad props out to Will Stubblefield, Will Stubbs and Stubbs for the pictures in this Blig-o-blang post!

Until next time…KIA KAHA!!!

-Coop

(Kia Kaha pic by my sis, Annie Lambla)

NW Riot Team: Going Big at Outlet Falls, Washington

Riot Goes Big in the Northwest!

Disclaimer: Scroll down if you only want to view the photos!

I have been looking for the right falls to take the next step and really go big! Lucky for me I live in the Northwest, a land of waterfalls. This day took me to a little known creek in Washington called Outlet Creek where 70ft Outlet Falls stands tall looking over the canyon below as if it was guarding the creek.  I had heard of this falls before from local paddler/film maker Nate Herbeck but had not considered running it until I saw the pics from the day before. It didn’t take me long to decide I wanted to fire it off. I made up my mind that night that I wanted to run it, so I put out the calls to the peeps that it was time for a hucking mission! After arranging a crew I went to bed feeling inspired. 5:00am came quickly as I got up, gathered my gear, and loaded my boat on the car.  This day seemed different than others since I had already made up my mind about the drop. I drove off and headed for what would be my highest descent of a falls yet. When we arrived at the falls there where nine boaters, 2 videographers, and multiple photographers all ready to catch the descent of Outlet Falls. It was a cold day and the water had frozen to the hanging walls around the waterfall creating frozen sparkling crystals and icicles that reminded me of the ice on the inside of a freezer!  The surreal surroundings would create amazing images that would later be frozen in time not unlike the icicles themselves. As we peered from the cliffs hundreds of feet above the pool at the bottom of the falls I think everyone had the same feelings flowing through there mind. We all commented about the size of what stood before us, “Man that is tall” someone said, “Looks really good though”, someone else said. It was about then when Ryan Scott from Gorge Hits said he was going to gear up and head to the lower pool for safety and video. Everyone then took turns asking one another if they were going to run it. Before the question made it my way I said, “I am gonna gear up and give’r”. Lucky for me Cody Howard from Hucking Huge was also in, which made two crazy bastards! To check out Cody’s Huge Huck go to huckinhuge.com.  It is always nice to have a partner in crime, thanks Cody! A couple of others where on the fence, but this was none of my concern, as I was focused on my line. Despite the falls perfect appearance at the lip, what awaited at the put in was a seal launch into the run-out of a class 5 rapid and a quick move around a class 3 hole up against the right wall, which was separated by a pool from another short class 3 rapid leading to the moving flat water lip of the falls. Oh ya the seal launch was assisted and required another boater pushing you off the cliff in order to have enough momentum to try and miss the class 3 hole below. Lets just say I was less than stoked on the entry maneuver. Despite this I was ready to huck, I looked at my buddy Tony who would send me into the abyss and said, “it is time!” I slipped into my Magnum secured myself and gave the word. Moments later I felt the cold water hit my face and new this was for real! I hit the water, melted the hole, and was pushed right. This was not were I wanted to be since the water on river right was moving toward the next rapid and the lip quicker than I had thought. I swung my bow back up stream and dug my paddle into the water as I worked to make the ferry back over to the left side of the eddy where I could sit safely and signal everyone I was ready. This is where time starts to move at a distorted pace which can only be described if you have been in this sort of situation. I made one long blow on my whistle waited a few moments then took the stroke out of the eddy and into the moving water! I was quickly swept into the class 3 rapid that lead to the lip and before I had a chance to think twice I was peering off the end of the world. Milliseconds later I was looking down the throat of this giant and could see the pool far below. My next thought was my angle and of possible over rotation. It was about that same time I knew I had to tuck, so tuck I did!  Some people say running waterfalls does not take skill. I would challenge this thinking and argue that that you do not just fall off of large drops, unless you like being on the injured reserve list. Each waterfall requires a little different technique, as they are all unique. It is not just about the size of ones balls! Although big balls are required as well!

-Thanks you to everyone that came to support the mission! I know that you all would have preferred to be paddling down a real run. You know who you are! THANKS!

Paddler: Riot Team Member Luke Spencer

Photographer: Jed Weingarten

The Riot Magnum doing what it does best, going BIG!

Photo Credit: Scott Baker

Photo Credits: Lana Young

Photo Credit: Ben Hawthorne

NW Riot Team: Going Big at Outlet Falls, Washington

Riot Goes Big in the Northwest!

Disclaimer: Scroll down if you only want to view the photos!

I have been looking for the right falls to take the next step and really go big! Lucky for me I live in the Northwest, a land of waterfalls. This day took me to a little known creek in Washington called Outlet Creek where 70ft Outlet Falls stands tall looking over the canyon below as if it was guarding the creek.  I had heard of this falls before from local paddler/film maker Nate Herbeck but had not considered running it until I saw the pics from the day before. It didn’t take me long to decide I wanted to fire it off. I made up my mind that night that I wanted to run it, so I put out the calls to the peeps that it was time for a hucking mission! After arranging a crew I went to bed feeling inspired. 5:00am came quickly as I got up, gathered my gear, and loaded my boat on the car.  This day seemed different than others since I had already made up my mind about the drop. I drove off and headed for what would be my highest descent of a falls yet. When we arrived at the falls there where nine boaters, 2 videographers, and multiple photographers all ready to catch the descent of Outlet Falls. It was a cold day and the water had frozen to the hanging walls around the waterfall creating frozen sparkling crystals and icicles that reminded me of the ice on the inside of a freezer!  The surreal surroundings would create amazing images that would later be frozen in time not unlike the icicles themselves. As we peered from the cliffs hundreds of feet above the pool at the bottom of the falls I think everyone had the same feelings flowing through there mind. We all commented about the size of what stood before us, “Man that is tall” someone said, “Looks really good though”, someone else said. It was about then when Ryan Scott from Gorge Hits said he was going to gear up and head to the lower pool for safety and video. Everyone then took turns asking one another if they were going to run it. Before the question made it my way I said, “I am gonna gear up and give’r”. Lucky for me Cody Howard from Hucking Huge was also in, which made two crazy bastards! To check out Cody’s Huge Huck go to huckinhuge.com.  It is always nice to have a partner in crime, thanks Cody! A couple of others where on the fence, but this was none of my concern, as I was focused on my line. Despite the falls perfect appearance at the lip, what awaited at the put in was a seal launch into the run-out of a class 5 rapid and a quick move around a class 3 hole up against the right wall, which was separated by a pool from another short class 3 rapid leading to the moving flat water lip of the falls. Oh ya the seal launch was assisted and required another boater pushing you off the cliff in order to have enough momentum to try and miss the class 3 hole below. Lets just say I was less than stoked on the entry maneuver. Despite this I was ready to huck, I looked at my buddy Tony who would send me into the abyss and said, “it is time!” I slipped into my Magnum secured myself and gave the word. Moments later I felt the cold water hit my face and new this was for real! I hit the water, melted the hole, and was pushed right. This was not were I wanted to be since the water on river right was moving toward the next rapid and the lip quicker than I had thought. I swung my bow back up stream and dug my paddle into the water as I worked to make the ferry back over to the left side of the eddy where I could sit safely and signal everyone I was ready. This is where time starts to move at a distorted pace which can only be described if you have been in this sort of situation. I made one long blow on my whistle waited a few moments then took the stroke out of the eddy and into the moving water! I was quickly swept into the class 3 rapid that lead to the lip and before I had a chance to think twice I was peering off the end of the world. Milliseconds later I was looking down the throat of this giant and could see the pool far below. My next thought was my angle and of possible over rotation. It was about that same time I knew I had to tuck, so tuck I did!  Some people say running waterfalls does not take skill. I would challenge this thinking and argue that that you do not just fall off of large drops, unless you like being on the injured reserve list. Each waterfall requires a little different technique, as they are all unique. It is not just about the size of ones balls! Although big balls are required as well!

-Thanks you to everyone that came to support the mission! I know that you all would have preferred to be paddling down a real run. You know who you are! THANKS!

Paddler: Riot Team Member Luke Spencer

Photographer: Jed Weingarten

The Riot Magnum doing what it does best, going BIG!

Photo Credit: Scott Baker

Photo Credits: Lana Young

Photo Credit: Ben Hawthorne

The Eddy Feeling World Premiere

Yo!  All you A-T-L-iens and grungy Athenian town-eezz the  RT Crew is bringing it live to the Peach State. If you like  fish and grits and all that pimp shit then everybody let me hear you say O-Yea-yer.

Dr. SpeeDiddy (a.k.a Spencer Cooke) has just wrapped up the inaugural RT movie “The Eddy Feeling.” It’s live, loud, and hot of the presses. Word has come down the pipeline to us from the soon to be President Obama Bin Laden,

“The RT Crew is all about The Change and I’m proud to say that my inauguration as President of the United States will coincide with the inauguration of The Eddy Feeling; deep in the South East of our great Nation!”
“Hoorah! Hoorah!”

The Agenda:

January 20th

Riot is proud to host a demo with the University of Georgia Whitewater Club from 8pm to 10pm at the Ramsey Student Center in Athens, Georgia. This is free to students but unfortunately do to UGAs insurance it will cost $7 to the public. We will have a full fleet there for everyone to test out. For directions please visit the Ramsey.

January 21st

The world premiere of the Eddy Feeling will be presented by Cine’ Of Athens in the Arts District of downtown at 9:30 pm for FREE. Riot would like to thank the whitewater club prez .Caroline Moon and v.p. Michael Thurmond for hosting. Please visit RT to watch the Eddy Feeling trailer and the feature short film The Lower Chauga.

Cine’ is a phat crib. The building first housed -from the 1940’s on a post office extension, a car showroom, and most recently the Snow Tire Company Recap Plant. It now is Athens Fine Arts Theatre with a barcafe.’ For directions and other information please visit their website. We’ll be at Cine’ early chilln’ in the barcafe. So come have a drink, support a great local establishment, and talk shit about sum good ol southern whitewater boat rid’n.

Signing out from Ashevegas.

Windham

Team Riot and Rapid Transit