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Old 03-08-2010   #1
Glenwood Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 80
Lessons learned

I am posting this so people can learn from my idiot mistakes yesterday.

Lesson #1: Even if you've got a pocket on your pfd tie everything in anyway.

I didn't heed this advice and had my camera and my keys in the pocket on my pfd. Well, I didn't zip it up and one flatwater cartwheel and they were both gone into the depths of the upper salt. I don't think a simple mistake like this has ever cost me so much money, not to mention ruining my day.

Lesson #2: If it's expensive and doesn't float, tie something to it that does.

I have been telling myself for about 8 months to tie something to my camera so I could still find it if I dropped it, but never did. If your like me, stop reading this and go find your camera and do this. You won't regret it.

Lesson #3: Have a backup key stashed on your car.

It made it extremely difficult to enjoy the run knowing that I had to go find a locksmith and get a key made and how long it was going to take. I got lucky and I had never taken the key from the glove box from when I bought the car and we were able to get the car open, but it sure would have sucked if that wasn't the case.

So go do these things today and you'll thank me tomorrow. And there is a boatload of beer for anyone that finds my Pentax. (if its still working)

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Old 03-09-2010   #2
jmcdannel's Avatar
Boise, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 159
I feel your pain. I dropped an ammo can in the Middle Fork Salmon a couple years ago. I went to grab my iPod to listen to some tunes. I thought I had two straps, but there was just one on the handle. The second I hit the cam buckle, the box dropped like a rock through the middle of my cataraft. It had my iPod, wallet, tools, spare parts for the raft, flashlight, toothbrush/paste, deodorant, ibuprofen, and several other things. It also had my keys. I just got a new car about 3 weeks prior, and it only came with one key. Luckily, I had 2 spare keys made the day before the trip. Unluckily, I left those new keys at home in the chaos of packing everything. I had to borrow a truck from one of the guys on the trip, drive 3 hours to Stanley where my wife met me after her 3 hour drive from Boise. I got a key from her, then we each drove back 3 hours. I slept a couple hours and then woke up and drove the 6 hours back home.

Lesson #4: Keep your important items in a secure location. I now have a pelican case that fits very snugly in my frame and has extra straps to ensure it never drops into the river.

Lesson #5: Keep backup tunes in your car. I was using my iPod, but it's now in the river. There was no radio for the majority of the drive. BORING.

I also keep one of these on my camera now: Olympus Floating Foam Camera Strap - 202204 -

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Old 03-09-2010   #3
Seattle, Washington
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 10
spare vehicle key

I've told all my friends/family to get the "hide-a-key" for all their vehicles. a little black box that has a strong magnetic backing that won't bounce off. it's about $4 compared to a $50+for a locksmith/broken window.

My buddies being skeptical about this "someone will find it"! I told them if you can find it, you'll have free range of my truck while i'm gone on Yeah they gave up after an hour.

It saved my buddies that took my advice and my ass many times. But now that i shared my info and you read's bad luck not to. It has happened to a friend that i told this to...I was like you got the Hide-a-key right? sure didn't...grrr. We are locked out and it's raining.
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Old 03-10-2010   #4
CO_Patrick's Avatar
Silverdale, Washington
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 299
Scott, I'd make fun of you for being a dumbass but knowing my luck I'd be next so I think I better be humble instead. Sucks it ruined the trip on top of it though, since you think about it the rest of the way down the river.
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Old 03-10-2010   #5
rwhyman's Avatar
Unincorporated Douglas County, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 961
Originally Posted by logan.madlin View Post
get the "hide-a-key" for all their vehicles. a little black box that has a strong magnetic backing that won't bounce off.
I had one of these boxes on the inside of the frame on the underside of my truck. The first time I needed it was a couple of years later, but it was gone. So I would say, check it often and always before a long trip.
Karma is like this: If we set causes in motion the effects come back to us.
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Old 03-10-2010   #6
Dave Frank's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,727
Use Electrical tape or bailing wire. Make it difficult, but not impossible. There is one wired to my truck that i cannot find. Duh.

(seven two 0)-298-2242
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Old 03-10-2010   #7
Riparian's Avatar
Little Village, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,350
These are pretty cool if you have a trailer hitch receiver.

HitchSafe for trailer hitches hitch receivers, Hitch Cover, hitch, key safe, car hide a key
Uh, I'm just gonna go find a cash machine.
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Old 03-10-2010   #8
Boise, Idaho
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 20
Yeah, I got to replace all my keys this past year after roll practice in a lake. Same thing - in a lifejacket pocket, and forgot to zip the pocket up. Now I have a key I just keep in my lifejacket, so even if I do something stupid my other keys are safe in my car!
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Old 03-10-2010   #9
FatmanZ's Avatar
NOCO, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1990
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 582
Agreed. Extra key hidden on the vehicle is a must. My wife wasn't happy one 4th of July when I had locked the keys in the trunk of the car before a run and then to save money an older transient fellow helped me bust out the lock cylinder on the trunk. After that, anyone with a screwdriver could open the trunk....except for my wife!
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Old 03-10-2010   #10
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 111
hitchsafe is kinda neat except you can't use your hitch to pull anything. So kinda pointless.

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