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Old 07-19-2009   #101
Longmont, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 173
So, so horrible to hear this. My thoughts are with his family, friends and those with him Saturday.

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Old 07-19-2009   #102
Golden, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 321
One of my Derk memories that seems to come to mind now is from when we hit Barrel Springs last March after a Cataract Canyon trip with the Mines Kayak Club. We had just discussed prior to putting on, "Hmm, doesn't look like a good place for a roll". Sure enough, as soon as we peel out into Life After Death, I see Derk do a roll. Naturally I couldn't pass up the opportunity to tease him about it, so I say something stupid like "looks like you owe me ice cream" or something to that degree. But as they say "he who laughs first, laughs last." 15 minutes later, we arrive a Barrel proper. After stoking the nerves a little I run first, and proceed to capsize on some 6" wave in the enterance to the drop. BUBBLE, GURGLE, CHUNDER, CHUNDER. I roll up and flail into an eddy to see a smiling and laughing Derk, after he, needless to say, had styled the drop.

I'll miss you buddy...

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Old 07-20-2009   #103
Fred Gnarquist
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carbondale, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 403
I never got the chance to know Derk, Jake and I are running Gore tomorrow, and every single good time had on the river is dedicated to Derk, and all kayakers that have passed on the river. Remember, its not how many years you live, but how much life in those years, it sounds to me like Derk lived life to the fullest. RIP and may we all take a moment next time we are out there to remember our friends that have passed, and the passion we share for the river. Live life to the fullest.
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Old 07-20-2009   #104
ericnourse's Avatar
Greeley, Colorado
Paddling Since: 84
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 137
Give me strength. My face is wet with tears. Paddling on after pacing along the shores of Derk's resting place was painful and humbling for Flowtorch, Nathen, Freemont, and me. Flowtorch (Kent) and I looked in his vehicle. There laid Derk's CO kayak Bible...Perfectly situated post-it notes layered perfectly in the book were as abundant as pages themselves.

A Watershed drybag and 1st-aid kid displayed the back window.

The inside was a kayak store's display window.

Word's are slow.

Flowtorch's (Kent) face had the look of sadness, respect, humbleness, and strength all intertwined as he walked back from The resting place at Bouncing Betty as he said, "It's F-ing Derk". "He was so passionate about Kayaking"

Reading through this thread, I come to the conclusion that I want to be a better person.

Memorial ideas? I'm wanting to place a memorial at Bouncing Betty this week. Kent? Others? Family? I am a Tile guy and can engrave granite and other stone. We can hike in deep cycle batteries, a power inverter, and diamond tools to engrave on-site, or bring a brass engraving or stone to the site. Simple, respectful, discrete.

Eric Nourse 970 405 8002
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Old 07-20-2009   #105
davidcrockett's Avatar
Denver Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 35
Derk loved paddling new runs. He told me his goal was to kayak everything in CRC2, even the Crystal Gorge. His copy of the New Testament had a sticky note on every page that included a run he had yet to paddle. After we boated 3rd Gorge Lime he gleefully removed a sticky note from the Lime Creek page. Derk was always smiling. He also loved showing new runs to others. He made me tick off everything I’d paddled in my copy of the Guide so he could a plan trips to places I’d never seen. This year he guided me through my first run on Escalante, Black Rock, 1st Gorge Lime, 3rd Gorge Lime, Upper Animas, Rockwood Box, Castle Creek, and Upper Fryingpan.

Derk told me that it was the responsiblitly of older boaters to teach new ones the sport. I was impressed by his dedication to the CSM Kayak club. When my younger brother Jack entered CSM as a Freshman last Fall, I told him to look up Derk or Silas, I had not met either of them, but heard they were Class V boaters. That was the best advice I gave Jack. Derk took him on spontaneous boating trips to places like Sixthwater, The Fish, Escalante, and Fossil Creek.

I feel his loss when I talk about runs we planned on paddling together. My brother and I were looking forward to reuniting and paddling Gore with Derk in August. We planned to paddle Bluegrass Creek and The Black Canyon. Next year we would FINALLY catch the Zion Narrows.

As we road tripped and paddled this season Derk would fuss at me for leaving my camera. I told him we would be kayaking these runs for years and I would bring my camera next time. I never thought he’d leave us so soon.

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Old 07-20-2009   #106
Front Range, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 274
Media coverage

For anyone interested, media snippets from today's papers/ news outlets in Denver:

Avid kayaker dies in Poudre - The Denver Post

Kayaker Killed In Rocky Mountain National Park -

I was hoping to find CBS 4's video memorial when I ran across these, and unfortunately it doesn't look as if they've uploaded that piece yet. If & when anyone locates this, or it goes online in the next day or two, please post it or let me know? Thanks.

Godspeed, Derk.....
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Old 07-20-2009   #107
Spits Hot Fire
N. Cascades, Washington
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 978
Strange, I wake up this morning , eyes still barely open I always turn on the tv first and right away is the short piece on derk. It was cool to actually see a clip of him by a waterfall somewhere.

I still owe Derk money from the Salmon trip. Nothin would make me happier than to see a bench at the Golden Playpark and to give that money to T-roy or whoever.
Your opinion doesn't matter when you're already biased.
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Old 07-20-2009   #108
Renaissance Redneck
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Huson, Montana
Paddling Since: 1988
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 986
I have Nothing to add but condolences to family and the buzzards that knew him
"You're gonna be doin a lot of doobie rolling when youre LIVIN IN A VAN DOWN BY THE RIVER"
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Old 07-20-2009   #109
Self-Aggrandizing jackass
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The Ranch, Colorado
Paddling Since: 04
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,134
RIP Count. I hoped to get skilled enough to paddle with you someday.
In his honor, one of my favorite songs about lost friends:

New like a baby
Lost like a prayer
The sky was your playground
But the cold ground was your bed
Poor stargazer
Shes got no tears in her eyes
Smooth like whisper
She knows that love heals all wounds with time
Now it seems like too much love
Is never enough, you better seek out
Another road cause this one has
Ended abrupt, say hello to heaven
Temple of the Dog - Say Hello to Heaven
"self-aggrandizing jackass" - it says it right on the label
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Old 07-20-2009   #110
Denver via GJ, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 333
My heart lost several beats this morning. Although I only knew him as a poster, I can't help but believe the Colorado and the Buzz lost one of its best.

God bless and thanks for being Count.

"I plan to leisurely advance through my existence" - Terry Fuhrman 1991
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