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Old 03-22-2011   #1
Paddling Since: 96
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,373
Very tough weekend on the west coast...

I'm sure some on this board know of this but there's hard news from the west. Tyler Bradt (world waterfall record holder) and Jason Craig (Jr freestyle World champ) both had big crashes and are recovering from surgeries for broken backs. Tyler crashed on 101' Abiqua Falls in Oregon and broke a vertebra. Jason boofed a 30'er on Dry Creek in Cali. and landed on a hidden rock. Broken pelvis, tailbone and lumbar for Jason. Don't really know Tyler but I know Jason as a really great young guy with a very bright future both as a boater and a young man. Healing vibes for both of them.

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Old 03-22-2011   #2
4Corners Riversports
Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 4Eva
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 170
+++Vibes+++ for both you guys... heal up quick!

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Old 03-22-2011   #3
over the horizon
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Carbondale, Colorado
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Join Date: May 2009
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Lots of good Buzz vibes comin' your way, boys. For what it's worth, we appreciate you goin' big. As long as your sacks are intact you'll be back!
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Old 03-22-2011   #4
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Near water (hopefully), Colorado
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+ Vibes
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Old 03-22-2011   #5
Golden, Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2004
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Wow, I was just watching the video of Tyler's record waterfall descent earlier this week because some guys on a surfing forum were talking about the surfer (Sion Milosky) who just got killed at Mavericks and were debating about doing dangerous stuff.

I was thinking that surfers have got nothing on kayakers when it comes to pushing the limits and I had to go check out Tyler's video to make sure my memory was correct. Yep, it was: these guys paddling V+ and hucking HUGE drops are deeper in the danger zone than big wave surfers. I'm not saying I'd paddle out at Mavericks or drop off a 100' + waterfall but I know enough about both sports to say that the kayakers win the brass balls award.

Good luck to both in their recoveries.
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Old 03-22-2011   #6
pnw, Washington
Join Date: Oct 2003
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Not to go off topic but the Mavericks death, was it in any way tsunami related? I was wondering what Mavericks would do with the tsunami wave. I am sure surfers had the same thought.

Rush broke his back a while back so he can talk them through the rehab.
"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 03-22-2011   #7
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 1,302
Broken backs are not fun. They suck. You notice it every day, and eventually just get used to the weird movements and popping, and occasionally waking up in the morning with all of your muscles tightened up. And you never paddle as well as you did before, even though you can still run big stuff. Freestyle kayaking gets substantially harder in my experience. Heal up well boys. Very sorry to hear about the mishaps. Sending lots of good vibes.
Kyle McCutchen
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Old 03-22-2011   #8
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Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Oct 2003
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Sorry to hear about the injuries - sounds really rough. Best wishes to both these stellar boaters on their recoveries.

Regarding Mavericks death - it was not tsunami related. I don't think the tsunami had any significant effect on the surfing out there. Brother-in-law is ex-pro surfer and his opinion is Mavericks is evil. Everything's wrong with it except it can produce some great waves that are irresistible to some.

I guess the surfing vs. kayaking debate is a whole nother topic but I'm not sure that I entirely agree with you Ture - grant it I know very little about surfing. In terms of the combination of skill, mental, and physical strength & toughness I think expedition kayakers are far more impressive. However, if you look at the top surfers, those guys almost all beat their bodies to piss.

Compare someone like Kelly Slater to EJ. Slater has had all kinds of broken and twisted bones and surgeries. EJ's jacked a shoulder a couple times and had some nasty internal bruising from a freak incident in the Great Falls race, but other that I don't know of anything major. Has Stookesberry had any major injury? Is there a surfer of his caliber and longevity that can claim the same?

I recall reading a comment in Rush's blog when he broke his back about how lucky kayakers are because they have so few injuries compared to many other "extreme sports" athletes. I think he's right. Even deaths among the top kayakers seem fairly rare compared to surfing, though that's just my casual observation.

That's not to minimize the guts it takes to do something like stare down a 180ft waterfall (or half that) and go for it in a kayak, but surfers seem to constantly put themselves in positions of being one small step away from severe consequences.
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Old 03-22-2011   #9
boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1983
Join Date: May 2010
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So sorry to hear this news....I ran the Grand last spring with Tyler and his dad Bill and some other good folks from Montana. Tyler is a very unassuming young man full of the life force which guides us all.....His smile and style are very infectious.....Sending all the good vibes I can muster......heal quickly and completely Ty.....I'm just glad you're still here! and hey....I'll take your spot on cook can relax awhile


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