The Vermont Paddlers Club

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Board Meeting floatilla...Lower Mad

Thursday Apr 15, 2010
Participants:
Kayak: Paul, AJ and Ryan
Open Canoe: Brock
Organizer: Paul Carlile
Difficulty: intermediate WW
Level: low boatable
Gauge (cfs): 307
Author: Ryan

About as mellow as you get for a post work run....

We all joined the club because we like to boat...Being on the board was a choice because we like what the club does and promotes but when there is water flowing the choice is easy - boat or meet? Paddling wins! So why not a float and then meet afterwards????

Anyways - the Lower Mad was at about as low as you want it for a fluid run - the upper rapid has tons of eddys and the lines are a little more narrow. BRock found this out by drifting into the only rock on the first rapid sideways. He broached and pinned losing his paddle and swimming down to the landing below the first rapid (is this thing still called elevator shaft?). Anyways Brock lost his paddle and had to walk out.

The rest of the run AJ, Paul and I eddy hopped and boogied down through the remaining rapids in the upper section and then plopped down over Horseshoe and then more of the same eddy hopping down through the lower gorge. After the last rapid we surfed up the speedy wave a few times and then headed to the take out to meet Brock, upon which we loaded up and headed to the Reservoir for some Brews, Dinner and the board meeting...Rich Larsen met us there unwilling to huck any meat....

In retrospect Paul, AJ and myself weren't paying attention and were goofing off up stream surfing and eddy hopping. Knowing Brock is a gritty bugger and has a lot of time in the boat this season we were much too lackasdasical about him drifting into the first rapid on his own ahead of us. The situation ended ok with a lost paddle and his OC1 a little over flexed (no gunnal damage). But it could have been a mess if Brock had been pinned between his boat and the rock. As a relatively new paddler it is the responsibility of the stronger more seasoned boaters in the group to pay much closer attention to the rest of the group - even if you aren't the trip leader. I know for one, won't be taking for granted a participant's ability to successfully navigate a river. I have been burnt twice this season.....

Pix posted....

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