Archive for December, 2008


Paul Gamache breaks Freefall Record (108 ft in BC)

Huge congratulations to Pacific Northwesty/ Nor Cali paddler Paul Gamache who recently broke the world free-fall record in BC. The full article is posted here on Huckin Huge and will be published in Kayak Session Mag. Paul is not only a very talented, ego-free kayaker, pushing the limits of the creeking and hucking but is also heavily involved as a volunteer with grass roots, conservation organisation, American Whitewater. If you’ve ever attended any AW kayak festivals in the Pac NW, Paul is most likely involved somewhere.  One of his new projects is the The Columbia Eexperience.,

Photo: The Columbia River Gorge near Hood River 

In March 2009, Paul and a small group of paddlers will tackle over 1200 miles of the Columbia from Source to Sea, to highlight the impact of dams on the Columbia usage and water quality. Well worth checking out the blog and supporting this valuable project.


The Surfing Santa

After all the festivities of the Holiday season, Chris and I took a break from the merriment and met up with a few others to go surfing at Caswell last Sunday. The swell was (optimistically) 1.5 foot at 4 seconds, but at least the wind was off shore and it was clean.

Photo: Chris had the waveski out and was pulling of some nice moves

I wussed out given the air temperature (like 2 degrees C; i think i’m getting old), and minuscule surf but i took piccies of da boyz braving the cold and it looked like they were having a fun session.

Photo: Santa working off all the mince pies.

Swell is coming up this week and we should be heading to Llangennith to catch a few peelers on New Years Day.  Sunday looks like its gonna be a corker! Cant wait…been missing the Oregon surf way too much, particularly when i heard it was 10 foot at 14 secs this week…


Ladies Boof Clinic Instruction Video Coming Soon…

About six months ago, James and I co-ordinated a ladies boof clinic, run in conjuction with PDXgirlpaddler and With a bit of free time on my hands, work has begun on editing the video. I’ll have something up here soon- including all the fantastic instruction James gave. Stay tuned…

Photo: James and Lisa on Beaver Falls on McDowell Creek.


Hurley Classic Freestyle Event- Video

Joe and I headed to Hurley at even earlier ‘o’clock on Sunday. We were lucky that the Scouts were providing hot sausage and bacon rolls and tea to help the day off to a good start. The Thames had risen over night and we found Hurley on 4 gates.

Photo: Joe going for a phonix monkey in his heat

At this level, the green wave was gone and it became quite the hole, though still fairly friendly at gates 1 and 2. Heats began promply at about 10:30 am and finished at about 2 pm, ready for the finals. It was great to see every variety of paddler participating, from intermediate to expert, C1 and K1, juniors, masters, ladies and men. Click here for the results.


Photos (L to R):  Lee Pyke, demonstrating that one blade is just as good as two; Guru Flea, showing us how its done; me hanging on for the ride, trying not to flip and/or flush.


 Photo:14 year old Tash, tearing it up into second place Ladies, first junior!

Here’s a video of some of the rides over the weekend

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A great event- Thanks go to Jacko, Judges, TVF, Scouts, Square Rock.


An Early Hurley

Joe and I set out at too-early-o’clock on Saturday to play at Hurley as part of the Hurley Classic. T’was at dreamy levels, on 3 gates with a perfect green wave. One thing I love about hurley (judged on the two times i’ve been there), is that the feature is fairly symetrical. There’s no talk of unidirectional moves-you can do pretty much everything left and right…that is if you can actually do the moves, er-hum. I’ve never paddled any where else where that is true.

 Photo: Joe about to embark…looks like he’s yet another Jackson Convert. Yeah!

We saw lots of very vertical blunts and even some pan-ams. A super coolio day, despite the fiercly cold weather. Me loves the Hurl!



Photo (L to R):  Unknown paddler, getting vertical; Joe on the wave


Squirly Hurley

Hurley is one of those beauties of a play spot. Depsite its close proximity to the Big Smoke, i.e. London, it was surprisingly uncrowded. Maybe it was beaucse the air temperature was about 5 degrees or that the Gene 17 crew were all in Devon, either way, we all rode the wave as well and as often as our talents and fitness would allow. Hurley on 3 gates is quite a feature. Not too steep, but very fast, with a large pile, there is a wave next in front of gate 2, that gets more holey at higher levels. I went with Chris, Joe and Will. We all played to our hearts content until we lost daylight at about 5:00 pm. Nice. It was interesting to see how some the GB team were using the feature to its full potential.


Photos L to R: GB team member; Smiley Chris; Sunset


Dart Loop with the So’ton Crew

I had the privilege of paddling with the Upper Hamble Canoe Club on the weekend. Staying at Finlake, we were treated to a Swiss style chalet- which was great for drying out our kit in the super-cold weather. River levels were a tad on the low side, but fun was had by all on the Dart loop. Some random photos below:


Photos (L to R): Maria playing; Dom in the Washing Machine; Barney Jr on his way to being spun dry

There were some neat sections with some descent pop-out spots (namely on the small rapid below washing machine). There were ample stern squirt spots on the way down the river, but one of the best was at the rapid called Lovers Leap. Here is a video of some of Sunday’s fun and frolics.

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