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Old 04-05-2011   #61
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Where ever the water is...., Colorado
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 441
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I raced motorcycles (moto-x, cross-country and enduro) from age 6 till 21

I was also a sponsored amateur skateboarder (pool, vert-ramp, mini-ramp) competing all over the country from age 11-19ish

I also was also into Rock and Ice climbing from age 6 to 38.

I did the soccer, basketball, baseball thing in elementary and middle school but never really liked the whole team sport aspect....

Started kayaking after collage on a climbing trip to Oregon.

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Old 04-05-2011   #62
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 128
Some track in high school- not very fast

Nordic ski team in high school-didn't have the competitive demeanor to really go anywhere, but really liked xc skiing

Started kayaking at age 12 but barely got to go again until college

Nowdays I mtn bike, hike, run, hunt, kayak daily in the summer and am the Nordic ski coach at the High school- and I'm a lot more competitive than I used to be

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Old 04-05-2011   #63
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Austin, Texas
Paddling Since: 1983
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 54
Growing up in Texas we all had to play football at a very young age. One day I realized that football wasn’t for me when I spent more time wanting to be on the sideline flirting with the coaches’ daughter instead of banging heads. Coach did not like that and so my career as a football player was over.

Took up volleyball and Frisbee in HS. Promptly blew out both knees. Back in those days the orthopedic surgeons sliced and diced the knees and ripped everything out w/the idea that 30 years later their son’s would be replacing their victims knees (actually have titanium knees now). Hurt like hell backpacking after all those operations (I lugged a view camera all over the west in those days).

During college was invited on a raft trip down the Rio Grande and I was hooked. I could sit on my rear and watch the country go by and more importantly the river carried my large format camera gear. Bought a raft. Was given an old fiberglass Phoenix kayak. Taught myself to roll and that was it. Been a river rat ever since. Paddled more rivers than I can keep track of.

To sum it up and answer your question Silas, for myself and I can assume anyone that has kayaked as long as I have, it’s all about being devoted to paddling itself albeit via canoe, raft, kayak, or even dugout canoe.

Hey as an aside if you need quality pics for when the article runs let me know and maybe I can help ya. Used to contribute to Paddler back in the day and would love to help ya out.

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Old 04-05-2011   #64
Lakewood, Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 163
I did kayaking in high school in the 80s. We had a decent club set up by one of the teachers. This was in England and is probably not typical. For some reason I stopped paddling at 18 and didn't start again til last year.
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Old 04-05-2011   #65
Woodland Park, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1975
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 43
I was a competitive springboard diver in high school and college and for a year after college as well. I also competed in basketball, football, baseball, and track and field as a freshman and sophomore in high school before I devoted myself to diving.
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Old 04-05-2011   #66
Cpt. No Scout
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In a Van, Down By the River
Paddling Since: 91
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 517
Very competitive grappler. Thank gawd kayaking came along and mellowed me out before I got my but kicked real good. The river has a way of humboling a kid and making him a man!
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Old 04-05-2011   #67
ashland, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 222
played football, baseball and ran track in high school quit it all except the running when I discovered surfing at 15 (still love it, but the ocean is a long ways a way now) kept running like a madman in college and beyond untill my knees gave out then started biking and haven't quit.

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