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Old 06-27-2011   #11
RandyP's Avatar
Westminster, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2002
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 152
Chadwick you are a good boater don't dought yourself just go out and have some fun. We get to caught up in keeping up with the Jacksons so you swam doesn't make you a bad boater just human. I haven't been able to get out as much this year as usual which is wierd since I don't have a job! Seems like every year I have good confidence going into the season then I find a hole that has it's way with me (and not in a good way) and I have to step back and start all over. I think maybe the mental part of boating is the toughest part it's not something you can learn from a video a little fear is good keeps us on our toes and out of places we have no business being! Don't sell yourself short this high water has a lot of folks second guessing thier skills. Lets get out give me a call we can try and set soemthing up!
My wife made me get a cell phone so you can text me too 303-668-2703

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Old 06-27-2011   #12
tj@cu's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 983
"There are bold and there are old kayakers, but there are no old bold kayakers"

I think of bold as a lack of mental consideration of what the risks and rewards are of what we are doing. I know people that will never run class 4 and have just as much fun as I do when I'm running class 5. I think we all eventually realize that just because something is there doesn't mean we have to run it, I used to try and run everything and not really ask "how much will I enjoy this vs what could happen if it goes wrong".
And don't think you are the only person going through this, I am going through the same struggle this year, while planning a trip to the stikine. Some days I am so amped on it and other days I get really scared about the difficulty/risk/remoteness of the trip.
I think you should set goals on what you want to get out of kayaking, if that means getting out in your boat (from flatwater to class 5) or if you want to progress your skills and keep getting better.

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Old 06-27-2011   #13
Roy's Avatar
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1993
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 682
I came across this link on the subject some years ago and it spoke to me, but of course, YMMV. Either way, it's a click away and worth a read...

Fear and Focus by Chris Joosse

Then on a lighter note, the classic Kayak by William (not Bill) Neally has a whole illustrated chapter on Fear. (Actually didn't realize he'd put out an updated edition until getting this link. May need to check that out myself!)

Kayak by William (not Bill) Neally
I've a suggestion to keep you all occupied...learn to swim!
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Old 06-27-2011   #14
Redwood City, California
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 31
To be a better river runner playboat, then playboat some more, then a bit more playboating after that.
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Old 06-27-2011   #15
fredfish's Avatar
Woody Creek, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1971
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 48
Get to a pool and roll roll and roll some more! Your rolls should be just another paddle stroke! Good luck!
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Old 06-27-2011   #16
Golden, Colorado
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 1,012
Originally Posted by CUBuffskier View Post
For some reason, I am in my 7th summer of boating and find myself more unsure of every hole than I ever have before. My roll is failing a lot too.
I think you answered your own question. I went through the same thing a couple seasons ago after discovering I lost my roll. Then everything became terrifying because I was afraid to go upside down. My confidence was unshakable when I was progressing because I knew I could roll anywhere anytime because my braced sucked and I was upside down alot. I lost my roll as a lot of boaters do because I never flipped anymore and I could get up with very poor technique.

The cure for me was stepping down a notch, boating things I was comfortable in, trying hard lines on relatively easy rapids so that I would flip over more, and playboating alot more. Playboating helps but isn't the cure. Just watch how many really good playboaters at Golden have terrible technique and still manage to get up. That may work in a playpark, but not in the middle of a heavy rapid.
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Old 06-27-2011   #17
Nessy's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 255
I lost my nerve after a swim last month and had to step back up to class III. You probably won't overcome fear and anxiety by reading, although reading about all things whitewater is an excellent way to increase your knowledge and sharpen your perspective, IMO. Have you considered enrolling in a swiftwater safety/rescue class? I did and now have more confidence in knowing that I can both help myself and others as well.
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Old 06-27-2011   #18
Kayak/SUP Instructor
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The High Ground, Colorado
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 1,325
I agree with afox that the AW series by Ammons was a good read and I should read it again.

My wife just started dipping her toe into Class IV this year and it scares me a bit to have her run with us when I'm boating with one eye down river and the other is watching her. Nobody likes to see the one they love getting scuffed up.

I gotta figure that one out..
"Let us cross the river to the other side and rest beneath the shade of the trees." ~ Last words of Thomas Jonathan ''Stonewall' Jackson
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Old 06-28-2011   #19
Littleton, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 350
This time a year, I say go to the lake. I still go to Chatfield (same part that the outfitters use to run classes) and practice my roll. On the river, I practice too, but it's not always feasible to do that, say if the water is super cold, or kind of shallow, I can't really get as much practice as I would like. Handroll practice is also kind of a hassle on the river.

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