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Old 04-06-2007   #71
pnw, Washington
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 3,404
cemartin, the thread got off topic. i think marko was responding to the ratings debate and not to your original post.

"Yesterday I was clever and tried to change the world. Today I am wise and try to change myself." -Rumi
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Old 04-06-2007   #72
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 855
hold on there... easy does it... slow down and breath! cemmartin, i wasn't attacking you with my post. the joke was a generalization and not directed at you. sorry that i gave you the impression i was attacking you.

and, yes, i have had plenty of days where i felt like a little drowned rat because of bad lines, missed lines and bad decisions.

yours truly,
a fucking idiot

and with this post i bid you all a farewell... it's a bit too stuffy in here for me.

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Old 04-06-2007   #73
Colorado Springs Paddling Since: 1983
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 254
hijacked thread - ratings

The annual debate about rapids ratings is inevitable, one because its fun to argue, but also due to trying to cram all rapids into 6 categories. Even with the use of -/+ the range of what is run these days is too broad. A Class IV- is going to have little comparison to a solid class IV in terms of boating skill required. Climbing used to have the same problem in the 5.10 grade before the A - D categories were added.

Having a better/broader rating system would help but not eliminate debates and sandbagging. American climbing has 15 grades (not including a,b,c,d and -/+) but you can't compare an 11a faceclimb to an 11a offwidth. Sure is nice having more options though. A new boating rating system has been proposed many times over the last several decades but so far hasn't stuck. Who knows?

On Sunshine, I was so excited when I heard that the rocks had shifted and the old ledge hole was gone. I hated that move. I was so disapointed when I saw the "new" rapid. Same move, same consequences, new location. Aurgh!
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Old 04-06-2007   #74
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Summit, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 2,085
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Personally, I like the V, 5.1, 5.2, etc. scale AW uses. It at least helps prevent the compression as guys run gnarlier and gnarlier stuff.

"The world would be a better place if everyone kayaked."-Brad Ludden (Valhalla)
"You only get one chance to run a drop blind."-DD
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Old 04-06-2007   #75
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Lakewood, Colorasta
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 843
"I've often thought of becoming a golfball"
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Old 04-07-2007   #76
surrounded by mountains, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1981
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 475
scout and use team work

Yep. Forget disecting the absolute rating. Use a guide book for a general reference to difficulty, but use it mostly for its instructions to put ins and take outs, and to gain some knowlege of known and signifaicant hazards. Otherwise, journey to a run that you're interested in and put on with excitement, curousity, and intelligent alertness to the obstacles and the performance of all in your crew. Once at the river, the guide book and its rating for the run are not the matter at hand. You are on the river and should be navigating it wisely. Most important is to scout as you go. Either from eddies or on shore. It is risky to run things blindly or on hand signals if there is anything significant to encounter. Too often it seems the city rat race seems to carry over to our gung-ho attitude on the river. Slow down. Relax. Appreciate being with nature. Take time and require that your crew safe guard everyone in it. Don't let machoism, a rushed pace, or sandbagging the difficulty, put anyone at risk. Scout, strategize lines and safety together, or portage. Ther river will be there another day. Some of us feel defeat if we portage on a given day. Kayaking, though, is a head game. If you're not feeling something like at least 95% certain of the outcome, then determine if there is a better option. When deciding to run something, though, always be mentally prepared to how your going to deal with the potential upsets (plans b & c). Have in your mind that you WILL roll, attempting several times if the hazards allow for it. Know where the micro eddies are to catch if knocked off line. Know what you would need to do if pinned, how you might have to claw your way off of something or to get upright. Know if you the hazards would suggest you might need to consider it best to abandon gear and swim for shore immediately if failure occurs in a particularly dangerous stretch. Know about relaxing and clawing your way out on the bottom of a suck hole if forced to the bottom. Know how to anticiapte setting safety for your friends and how everyone has to spring into action without jeopordizig their lives if faced with attempting a difficult rapid. Bottom line: be smart, appreciate your crew, look out for each other, appreciate the adventure, and be there to have fun and feel blessed ... even if some mishaps occur. Which they often do. Just be prepared and supportive with your river team. Hopefully, the take out will be a celebration of achievement, even if it involves a bootie-beer toast for a swim. Swims are not usually great fun, but hopefully you can tell and smile about it later. Happy adventures everyone. Be gald you're boating! ) -- kv

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