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Old 05-24-2011   #1
Moab, Utah
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 9
Teaching the kids..

Hey buzzards,
I will be headed to backwoods Maine this summer to teach some kids (14-17) how to kayak. We will be living in a remote wilderness setting for three weeks with access to a class III/IV run with great surfing. I am seeking some input, resources, one liners or any other advice you found helpful early in your boating career.

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Old 05-24-2011   #2
North Bend, Washington
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 476
Aside from other adults along to keep your headaches to a minimum....make sure you plan for the unexpected. Make sure you know what to do in an emergency and how to evac if necessary.

The boating part is the fun part- it's the other stuff that makes a wilderness trip with kids hard.

Good luck!

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Old 05-24-2011   #3
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The Road, Colorado
Paddling Since: '07
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 612
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I think having access to a pool/lake/big eddy, and access to a class II/III run is critical in not freaking students out.

Throwing first time students onto a class III/IV run sounds like a disaster to me. Perhaps I am not understanding where in the teaching cycle your kids are.
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Old 05-24-2011   #4
Crested Butte, Colorado
Paddling Since: 82
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 201
maybe you could take an AWA or ACA course for instructors.
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Old 05-24-2011   #5
Boozebay Harbor, Maine
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 43
Bring a hammock - a place that's not your tent but is still yours
'Naked Time' - Make sure the kids dry off after paddling every day, send them off in different directions so they have 15-30 min alone before getting back together as a group, it also works as a self-reflection period.
Plenty of line to hang stuff up to dry

If your running the trip I think, you're campsite is on a lake that has a couple other streams and rivers draining into it. If your lucky we'll get rain just before the trip and some of the other rivers will be running, some of which are just canoe routes with quickwater, some which have some whitewater, and would be other places to work on skills without hiking.

Remember you can always pick and choose how far up a rapid you want to start, you can't pick and chose where you will be getting the kids out of the water.

Rapid River right?
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Old 05-24-2011   #6
Moab, Utah
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 9
Thanks for all of the input:

Badaz- we will be on an island, on a lake providing access to flatwater for a nice progression.

Thanks for the ACA idea, I've been reviewing some of the ACA material, and have adapted many of the concepts to my curriculum.
The course area is an ideal training grounds in my opinion, plenty of flatwater to establish basic skills, fun but respectable whitewater, did i mention smooth ledge? The wilderness setting is ideal for the overall experience.

You are correct about the course on the Rapid River. Do you work for Chewonki as well? Will I be seeing you up there this season? I used to live/boat up NH/ME, we might have crossed paths. Any ideas on flows this year? Any additional info/advice you might have, please feel free to message me. Thanks!
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Old 05-24-2011   #7
Boozebay Harbor, Maine
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 43
I worked for them two summers ago running sea kayaking and canoeing trips for the boys camp, and I am waiting for a call from Ryan today about this season. I've only been paddling around Maine for the last two years, as before that I was always borrowing boats from my college which was in Colorado.

It's been raining a ton, so everything is high. I was actually planning on paddling the Rapid yesterday @ 3200 (crankin in Eddyflower terms) but there were problems within the group to work on so we paddled the Wild instead (plus I've been waiting to paddle the Wild since I started high school and this was the first time I've been able to catch it over 4'). There are only a couple of weekends where it releases and theres a guaranteed fun flow for Smooth Ledge (and the rest of the world show up), but as I understand it, theres almost always at least a couple hundred cfs flowing so you can putz around almost all the time.

Are you running both Rapid courses or are you going to be switching to a different course for second session?

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