Breakthrough Moments in Kayaking

November 5, 2007 at 2:44 am (Kayaking)

In the past week I’ve had several breakthrough moments in kayaking that have allowed me to improve significantly.

1. Surfing at Barking Dog. I can’t really figure out what I was so scared of before, but surfing at the Dog was the biggest boost to my kayaking confidence thus far. It’s been one of those things that has terrified me for absolutely no reason for years. Even just attempting to make it out on the wave was unthinkable before, but on Tuesday I put in at Camp Lotus with no shuttle set and no intention of going downstream. It would have been pretty lame to just sit in the eddy next to the wave, so I had no choice except to practice. I rolled tons, missed several rolls, got over my fear of the swirly eddy line, and am now hooked.

2. Upstream Ferry. I think I learned some ferry basics years ago down on the Kern, but I completely forgot them and was unfortunately leaning forward while trying to ferry. Once I was told that I needed to lean back while ferrying upstream in a playboat, it made it much easier, less stressful, and more fun.

3. Eddy Catching. This has been a big problem in my kayaking. I feel fairly comfortable bombing down the middle of rapids, but because of a few experiences of winding up upside-down in an eddy (in the middle of Racehorse Bend), I’ve avoided catching them. Simply being in my boat more, as well as learning how to ferry upstream, has helped tremendously.

4. First Threat. I can’t believe I even got up the guts to try, but now that I’ve been in 1st Threat on the South Fork American, I absolutely love it. Today was bright and sunny and SO much fun surfing there. I’m going to Barking Dog tomorrow and hopefully will get in some more surf sessions this week, depending on water.

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1 Comment

  1. rsuddeth said,

    Congratulations Tess! Next step: pink gear. 🙂

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