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Old 05-11-2011   #1
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,132
Platte River Bar & Grill to St. Louis, Missouri

Last night I did a bike ride with a boating buddy that started and finished at the Platte River Bar and Grill in Littleton. Out back behind the bar, a gentleman by the name of Churchill "Shirtkill" Clark (aka Captain Clark) was carving a 20' x 3' log into a 16' dugout canoe! He has been at it for 6 weeks (all by hand, no power tools) and plans on finishing and launching next week.

The plan? Float from the bar to St Louis, Missouri! Down the South Platte to the Platte and down the Missouri to the Mississippi and into St Louis. I would say he was crazy, except this was his fourth dugout canoe and in 2004 he did the whole Lewis and Clark route, up the Missouri, over the mountains and down the Snake/Columbia to the Pacific ocean AND THEN back to St. Louis!!! His other three dugout canoes are all in museums after epic trips.

If you get the chance to stop by the Platte River Bar and Grill in the next week, DO IT!!! And bring beer, its hard, thirsty work!

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Old 05-11-2011   #2
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 2,239
Hey ,more power to him but the voyage is not legit if he starts below Chatfield and bypasses the mighty C-470 drop and Leigh Gulch sections.Purists might say South Park.It'd be a pretty cool , from a historic reenactment standpoint,but talk about a lot of flat water

People take on some pretty serious challenges; some dude awhile back ran the Arkansas to New Orleans . Some guy that works for Island Expeditions was going to paddle a cat/outriggered sea kayak down to the Rio San Juan[ NIC/CR border] or the Panama Canal from Belize,then cross over to the Pacific and paddle up all the way to Vancouver !Never heard the outcomes.

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Old 05-29-2011   #3
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,132
Another bike ride to the Platte River Bar & Grill. Captain Clark is still there WAITING FOR WATER (like the rest of us). He just got the dugout in the river today and it floats much higher than I would guess.

He is waiting for higher water and looking for paddlers to join him for part of his trip (a couple days or a couple weeks).

The delay might mean he misses the 2.4 MILLION cfs on the Mississippi.
Can you imagine hanging out at the put in for a 2-3 MONTH trip waiting for water? At least he is at a bar! Try to get by there this week.

I'll find his facebook page and post it later.

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Old 05-29-2011   #4
Kearney, Nebraska
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 6
I tried to message him on facebook but haven't heard anything from him. I live in central Nebraska and there are some paddlers here who could join him, help portage or even get him some media exposure.
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Old 06-04-2011   #5
Kearney, Nebraska
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 6
Facebook page

Join the Facebook page for Knotty The Dugout Canoe.
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Old 06-07-2011   #6
Littleton, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1970
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 34
Just did a video interview with Churchill Clark. Will post later but it looks as if you'll have to follow his progress on facebook. He has a computer, go-pro and a solar charger. I think his great great great ....grandfather just used the sun and a pen.
He plans on putting updates on facebook. He's planning on putting in this sunday at 10am. They still haven't released water from Chatfield Reservoir so he'll have a tough start until that happens. He doesn't like the word "portage". He's looking to push pull or drag and portage as a last resort. Wish I had two months on the river. He's got a challenge ahead but I envy his perseverance.
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Old 06-15-2011   #7
Kearney, Nebraska
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 6
He now has a YouTube channel.

YouTube - ‪shirtkillsings's Channel‬‏

Make sure you Like this page on facebook - Knotty The Dugout Canoe
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Old 06-15-2011   #8
denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1977
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 68
Been following him on Facebook. Am I correct in thinking he's in Nebraska now. Audio was bad on latest youtube posting. Looks like he wasn't really aware of how to monitor flow gauges or get info on what to expect on the various sections, particularly on the Platte thru town. I did stop by one night to give him the skinny on what I know about the Platte but he wasn't around.
kerry edwards is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-15-2011   #9
denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1977
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 68
Just watched the video. Someone should provide them with some basic rules of river safety. Hitting the bridge abutment was not a good idea.

kerry edwards is offline   Reply With Quote

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