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Old 07-13-2015   #1
Grand County, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2011
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 28
Looking for II+/III- to Demo Kayak

Hi, I'm new to this forum. I'd like to demo a kayak from a shop in Edwards and don't know where to try it out.

I spent a week in Steamboat doing the Town Run from Walton Pond to the D-Hole. It was at about <500 cfs. I am very comfortable on that stretch which was probably solid II's. Today I scouted out the Lower Eagle from Edwards to Eagle. I'd like to run the section from Edwards to Wolcott, but the Trestle Rapid scares me a bit. I couldn't get a real good look, but I think it's a bit more technical than I'm ready for. Is there anywhere I could take-out prior to the Trestle Rapid.

Or, I could do the section of the Eagle from below Trestle Rapid to Eagle. The Interstate Rapid looked very doable for me, but I couldn't find/see Dead Cow rapid, which my book says is a little hairier than Trestle.

Or, there is the lower Colorado from Yarmony Bridge/Rio del Rancho to State Bridge, but that section is rather short and didn't appear to be as challenging as the Lower Eagle.

I used a Wavesport Diesel 60 in Steamboat and liked it because I was able to make very quick turns and it fit me very well. I'd like to demo the Wavesport Recon 70. I'm 5'6" - 120 lbs. My size limits my choice of kayaks. As much as I like the Jackson brand, they don't fit me at all.

I can roll in a pond, but not good enough yet for moving water.

I would appreciate any input.

Thank you.

kayak bunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-14-2015   #2
Steamboat, Colorado
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 582
Are you boating alone? Get a group together and you probably won't feel as nervous about running new stuff. Set yourself up somewhere in the middle, have someone run in front of you and show you solid lines and someone behind you to clean up your yard sale if you do swim. If you're worried about swimming, don't boat where you're uncomfortable swimming. It's ok to swim though. Swimming builds character.
At 120, you're probably gonna feel like a 70 gallon boat is friggin' huge, but the only way to know is to paddle one.

It's a good day to be a duck....
soggy_tortillas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-14-2015   #3
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 149
I've done that section of the Eagle, and yes, Trestle Rapid is a pretty significant step up. If you do run the section and want to take out above Trestle, you can park and take out on the river left before or after the highway 131 bridge.

I'd recommend running Cemetery Run on the Roaring Fork in Glenwood Springs to start with. Or run the Colorado from Grizzly Creek to the park in Glenwood. That's definitely a class II.

And post in the "Trip Planner" section to hopefully find some people in your area to boat with. Just put an open request, e.g., "Looking for boaters in the Eagle County area" and you should hopefully have some luck and make some friends to boat with in the future.

One problem with boating alone, even on class II, is that there's a good chance you'll be separated from your equipment if you tip over and have to swim, especially if the river has a continuous flow... and that is no fun at all and can turn a demo into a costly mistake. With companions on the water, they can help you recover.

And the spec's for the Recon 70 is 80 lbs to 150 lbs -- its their smallest creeker and would be a good fit for your weight. Its not just about volume. Demo'ing sounds like a great idea. I have friends who love that boat. Both the Diesel and The Recon are good options, find the one you like the best -- and get it before Wavesport goes away later this year!
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Old 07-14-2015   #4
Denver via GJ, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 333
I have demoed the recon before. I liked the way it paddled and fit but at my weight (155) I found it dang heavy so I expect at 120 you will too. Dagger mamba is along similar lines to the diesel and a dang good boat to progress with.

FYI dead cow can be scouted from a pullout on the road fairly easy and it runs pretty easy in a kayak. Trestle is certainly more difficult. This is not a section I would by any means recommend running solo, not that I recommend running anything solo.

Cemetery is a good rec for a II-III as it boats a lot more like the yampa town run.
"I plan to leisurely advance through my existence" - Terry Fuhrman 1991
-k- is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-14-2015   #5
Grand County, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2011
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 28
Thank you for all of the great replies!

I don't kayak alone. My partner is slightly better than I am and I follow him on the trickier stuff. However, I don't always follow him exactly and he has had to collect my gear. I'm not sure I've built any character from swimming, but it has kept my ego in check.

I'd like to join a group, but since I'm renting/demoing, I'm not particularly flexible as to where or when I go. Once I get my own kayak though, I will join a group. Good advice.

Thanks for the info on the take-out at the 131 bridge before Trestle Rapid. With the big waves, bridge pillars, sharp left turn, and the rocks on the right (or at least that's how it all looked to me), I'd like to save that one for a later date. Plus I'll be in a kayak that I've never used before. It's a little too intimidating for me right now.

Thanks for the info on Cemetery and Grizzly. They are a little far for me to drive for a day trip, but I'll put them on my To Do list for later this summer.

I'll re-scout Dead Cow. I'd like to do that section (the lower Lower Eagle - after Trestle Rapid) because it looks like about the right level of challenge from what I can see from the road.

The Mamba 7.6 weight range is 120-170#s and I'd like to be in the middle of the range or the higher end, rather than the bottom. But the specs show that it is a bit smaller than the Recon (volume and weight), so I'll check both the Recon and the Mamba out for size.

Thank you all for your great input/feedback!
kayak bunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2015   #6
Denver via GJ, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 333
You may have done this section already but meant to tell you dead cow is at about mile post 154.5, there is a concrete irrigation head gate you can see from the road headed eastbound and the rapid is just below it. Also take out at the rest area in eagle above the rodeo grounds unless you want to run rodeo rapid.
"I plan to leisurely advance through my existence" - Terry Fuhrman 1991
-k- is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2015   #7
Grand County, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2011
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 28
I'm lined up to try it next Wednesday. Thank you for the details. I'll make sure to scout it out before I make the run.

Thank you -k-!

kayak bunny is offline   Reply With Quote

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