Basically the industry went through some consolidations in 98 and 99. Dagger & Perception were bought by the bank of Islam and Watermark was formed. Confluencewatersports was formed by the merger of Mad River Canoe and Wilderness Systems and then they acquired Wave Sport in '99.
While I tend to agree with you about the east coast, it is widely accepted that the South east in particular is the hub of paddling. Great Creeking, warm water and lots of natural playwater (vs. our play parks.)
Life was good in Steamboat andWave Sport. It was a small company of dedicated Paddlers with innovative designs.
I never paddled so much with such quality as during those times.
But, it's all good. The new designs are again a leap in the next directions and I'm looking forward to the diesels and the Big South, Embudo and Crystal rivers.
See you out there.
Wave Sport Sales Rep