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Old 09-13-2010   #21
tj@cu's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 983
Leif I agree that was a pussy ass swim, if you think about it we boat scout a shit ton more rapids than we scout and I think like you were saying that I get unfocused a fuck up and swim. Also it seems when boat scouting you're never as fresh as you are when you have scouted a rapid for 5 minute, but I could go on and on with excuses, I think Ian says it best, "it was the boat".
And Kevin, I think the only thing that me and caspermike have in common is than when we get a few drinks in us the backside of a sheep starts looking pretty good (what can I say I'm from missoura). That was a horrible single sentence rant, I guess I have been taking to many philosophy classes. Those guys write paragraph long sentences like its their job, and I was writing quickly due to a need to get to the gym to get huge. rolling is all biceps, right?
And I think that toilet bowl and tunnel are less dangerous to swim at than any other spot on gore, they have huge pools after them. I think if you are running a drop and you are worried that if you flip over you're swimming than you probably shouldn't run it, but getting stuck in a hole is different than flipping and not being able to role.

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Old 09-13-2010   #22
NathanH.'s Avatar
N/A, North Carolina
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 325
First year boater, ran some class 5...

I have what I and I think most people would call a solid roll, but when you're as new as I am to whitewater and you get rolled in some class 5... It's hard not to let panic creep right in because you know what kinda shit is waiting for you, making it a whole lot easier to miss that "solid' roll. What you usually make happen in less than a second you're trying to make happen in about a milli second.

Don't run it if it doesn't look good to you, if you know someone (like me)who might have some problems, be at the huge hole with a rope on your walk around ( I, and most beginners choosing to step it up, and well anyone for that matter will appreciate it.)

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Old 09-14-2010   #23
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2002
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 23
I have yet to meet a kayaker who never swims. Even the best swim. An older, much wiser, kayaker once told me that you're only in your boat between swims. If you are afraid to swim, you shouldn't be kayaking.

Crazy Kayakers are not ones who swim class Vs, crazy kayakers are ones who are ignorant in thinking that they are so good that they won't have to swim class Vs.

There is a reason why the first thing a kayaker is taught is the wet exit and how to swim properly. Now if people haven't learned that, then they probably shouldn't be kayaking class Vs.

On the other hand, I have seen my fair share of capsized rafts in class Vs with people who have never gone rafting. Does that make rafting companies and their customer's crazy?
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Old 09-14-2010   #24
Mad Scientist/Creeker
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 803
Knowing how to roll and hitting your roll are two totally separate issues. One is technical the other is mental.

Beginners stepping up to class V are probably running class IV. Beginners who "know" how to roll are not going to be as good at "hitting" their rolls when they're running the hardest whitewater they've ever attempted. There's only one way to learn how to roll under pressure... attempting to roll under pressure, i.e. in some hard shit.

Gapers are going to swim. And so am I. And so is Tom. And maybe even Tyson. I just can not agree though that swimming class V is alright. When you swim you should go back to the dojo and practice your roll. Period. Rolling in a desperate situation might save your life.

You're almost always safer in your boat and the more solid your roll is, the more practiced it is, the less mental it is, and therefore the easier it is to execute under pressure.
Evan Stafford
Cub boater: "What do the spiders mean?" Old fart boater: "Trust your intuition." CRCII
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Old 09-14-2010   #25
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Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 481
First off: yes, rafters are all crazy. I tried that shit once, and it was the most terrifying experience of my life. I can't believe anyone would willingly put themselves in such a dangerous, out of control situation. I 'bout lost my life.

Second: there are kayakers that don't swim. My friend Conor Flynn, who is probably a better paddler than me, has been paddling for many many years, running plenty of class V, and had his first swim ever in Japan last year. Up until that point, he had never swam. So alright, yes, something finally caught up with him, but my real point here is that if you have a good roll, you can *almost* never swim.

And Tom, I'm not saying that was a pussy ass swim. It was a bad example, and I shouldn't have even brought it up, except I wanted to point out that you swam without rolling once. It was in no way an unjustified swim. Once you're in that hole, you and your boat are not coming out together. This is not about missing lines. What I'm saying is that people don't roll. Everyone flips over sometimes while creeking. I flipped just last month. (Can't seem to remember where right now, but I'm pretty sure that I did flip.) But I rolled. I rolled quickly and smoothly, repeating as needed, until I was out of danger. Many colorado paddlers seem to rely on not flipping. Once they're upsidedown, they just sort of give up, since they've blown their line anyway.

My dad used to tell me that was also the strategy of the european slalom racers back in his time. They couldn't roll, literally. They were incredible paddlers, but their skill was entirely focused on racing, and if you flip, you've lost the race, so you might as well get out. (As a side note, this might not be true. He said a lot of stuff that turned out to have been exaggerated beyond recognition.) Seems like colorado is going the same way, except we're not on a slalom course, we're creeking. It's really strange to see paddlers who are so specialized and so not well-rounded.
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Old 09-14-2010   #26
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Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,032
Seriously, who are these non rolling class V boaters we keep talking about? Where are these videos? Name names. The best boaters I see in Colorado seem to have their roll dialed in just fine. If all fingers are pointing at Tom, I've seen him roll many times; he seems to have that skill. There are some chumps that will boat down stuff they don't have the skills for, but the problem is hardly limited to their rolling skills.
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Old 09-14-2010   #27
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 393
Okay, to add a bit of seriousness to this conversation - I think Evan is right. Some people swim a LOT more than others. Sometimes it's because the person in question is comfortable pushing themselves really hard and sometimes it's because they need to go back to the Dojo and practice their damn roll.

Swims will happen. Every time I paddle into Double Trouble I know that there is a chance I'll be swimming out the bottom. If you boat scout a few blind horizon lines you're going to drop into some inescapable hole and swim. Evan and I once watched one of the greatest kayakers who has ever lived swim out of Tunnel at high water and it was very legit swim. That kind of shit happens.

With that said - when someone swims in class V it puts the entire crew in danger, eats up a lot of time and should be treated as a very serious deal. Swimming out of an inescapable ledge hole or swimming because you broke your paddle are pretty good excuses. Swimming in moving water because you missed a few rolls is not a legit excuse if you plan to run class V. Swimming is SO dangerous. I think every time someone swims in class V they should spend some time reflecting on what went down and think seriously about whether their swim was a result of something unavoidable ("I plugged that big hole and wasn't coming out") or the result of some missing fundamentals ("shit man, I was upside down and I hit my head and missed one roll and I decided I wanted to get outta there.")

KSC - these people exist and I worry about their health but I'm not going to put their names on mountainbuzz. And Tom's not one of them. Although if he were on the list I wouldn't hesitate to put his name on the Buzz.

PS - The river gods are always watching. Now that I've posted the above I'm probably going to miss 5 rolls in shallow class IV and swim like a carp. That'll teach me to preach on the internetz.
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Old 09-14-2010   #28
Ricky NM's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 04
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 166
Tom I may be a pussy, but at least I'm not Sean Lee. Besides, Tunnel and Toilet Bowl have too much water in them. How am I supposed to roll if I can't push off the bottom?
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Old 09-14-2010   #29
rgAHOLE's Avatar
Farmington, New Mexico
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 34
Fuck it. This thread is too stupid for even me to chime in on... nevermind.

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Old 09-14-2010   #30
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Bozeman, Montana
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 5,507
Tom whipped his ass with us at gore let us not forget. Swims are swims. We don't drink the booty for fun boyz.

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