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Old 07-20-2016   #1
KSC's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,032
Big South Nostalgia

I squeezed in another couple great days on the Big South this year, but it reminded me of the good old days when the Steamboat crew drove their trucks with reckless abandon, you couldn't drink a bootie beer without Eric N. shooting a gun off, and Lief was the only one who'd fire up the big ones at good flows because people still thought those drops were hard.

Are those days gone or am I just showing up on the wrong day? I was there the weekend after the gate opened and it was desolate.

This is still my favorite video intro. Hard to believe it was 7 years ago. My life must be stuck in a loop.

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Old 07-20-2016   #2
Denver, Colorado
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 47
Society as a whole has gone soft.

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Old 07-20-2016   #3
tj@cu's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 983
Its not often that "high" when they open it up normally, but it is great to reminisce about lief paddling a boat that looks like a playboat on him down that run and surfing all the holes (maybe pulling of a good old forrest noble run?). Maybe its true what everyone says about colorado boaters, were just all a bunch of pussies, I know I've been this year...
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Old 07-20-2016   #4
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 149
It sure feels like the kayaking community is not growing, which isn't good for the sport.

A good reminder to take as many opportunities to encourage and mentor folks -- whether its the guy or gal who's stoked to get on their first run, or the boater who's ready to step up to something harder but needs a veteran to show them down. In general the community is awesome, but its too bad if veteran crews don't give back by helping get new people involved.

Its a steep learning curve -- I wonder how many people think they're going to like kayaking but jump right in the river, end up upside down and half-drowned and give it up immediately. Some mentorship can probably prevent a good number of those early burnouts
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Old 07-20-2016   #5
Glen Vegas, Florida
Paddling Since: 92
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 338
Ha, kayaking hasn't had a substantial growth spurt since the late 90's.

Right now it there seems to be more Class V+ more than there has been for years. Totally pumped on the young guns swelling the ranks.
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Old 07-20-2016   #6
Glenwood Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 80
Who are these "young guns" you're talking about Paul? I haven't really heard of anyone running anything interesting this year. I have to agree with Tom. I wouldn't go so far as to say pussies, but when did the spirit of exploration die here? We all know that the classic class 5's are good but I can only run Vallecito, the Embudo, and Black Rock so many times before they become less enticing. There is other good stuff out there dudes.

Ran the Uncompagre gorge again this year and had only a dude from back east interested. For a pretty high quality, manageable, gorged out, amazing place it's sad that no one even thinks about this.

Why waste another weekend in the middle of the season at Crested Butte banging down some mediocrity when places like Treasure Canyon, the Crystal, and the less run stuff in Steamboat are empty? There's tons of great stuff you haven't run waiting for an adventure.

Long story short, since Bank left I can't find anyone interested in an expedition. (No takers for the Brazos, on Memorial day weekend, at perfect flows??? Really???) So I guess as much as anything, I need to expand the list of people I call. Send me a PM if you are interested in something different. And if you're going to do the same thing you went to the last 5 years, I'm probably out.

P.S. There are those that get a pass on my rant. You know who you are.
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Old 07-20-2016   #7
Durango South, 4CRS
Paddling Since: 07
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 173
Nice Kev. Glad to see our crew wasn't the only one with some beater lines.

Hippie, feel free to PM me if you have any cool missions in mind and need a marginally skilled partner. I had the same trouble finding anybody interested in Brazos this year, but don't usually post a personal want add for partners on the buzz because you might end up with someone like KSC or Tom wanting to come off the couch for their bi-monthly paddling weekend.

Hope to see you lousy sacs at baileyfest this year!
Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. - Helen Keller
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Old 07-20-2016   #8
San Jose, CA, California
Paddling Since: 1998
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 433
Ya Colorado kayakers are not the same as the were just a few years ago when the true shop droppers were running gore right up until the freeze in late November.

I remember a fall years ago now, where we watch the snow line on the Gore range gradually stratify down the mountains weekend after weekend until we were seal launching in the snow and portaging the ice dam at Tunnel falls.
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Old 07-20-2016   #9
Laramie, Wyoming
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 12
Wyoming rules.
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Old 07-20-2016   #10
Denver, Colorado
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 47
If it makes any difference this was my first year kinda stepping it up to class 5. Black rock, Gore, Bailey, etc. and it was hard finding people for that.

It seems the solid boaters have their crews and are not interested in new comers. It's been real hard finding anyone else stepping it up that should be.

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