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Old 11-07-2009   #11
boulder, Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 142
Grand isnt remote

I did a 350 mile solo river trip in the Yukon when I was 19. I didn't even bring a map because walking out was not a possibility. I am going down the grand this winter alone. I am a lot less nervous about that than I was when I watched the float plane take off when I was in the Yukon.

I think there is a greater reward for doing long trips alone. At the end you know that everything that happened in the end was directly a result of YOU.


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Old 11-07-2009   #12
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 567
That must have been incredible. I have gone back and forth with the whole soloing thing. There is something to be said for the power of solitude and self reliance. I have personally always wanted to slide in at my house on the crystal and take out in lake mead. Fortunately, I have three kids that rock my world so much that I would not want to leave for that long. But my whole career has been focused on other's paddling and in the end I like sharing those adventures and it is the interchange, push, and seeing things from another perspective. Maybe Otter will want to do it with me.

maybe my assessment is wrong and it takes the blind enthusiasm of the young to pull it off.


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Old 11-08-2009   #13
Crested Butte, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1987
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 298
Originally Posted by peterB View Post

maybe my assessment is wrong and it takes the blind enthusiasm of the young to pull it off.


I don't think it's an age thing. I am 48 and I soloed the Salt River this spring. Solo isn't for everyone but maybe certain personalities are drawn to it. I've been soloing for 20 years and my first solo river trip was down my local river that I knew very well. I was hooked on the experience right away. I worked up to new levels of the solo idea and have gone on to harder rivers over time. Over the years I have soloed the Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Escalante, the Dolores, Salt River, Westwater, Pine Creek and the Numbers and others. I have the Grand on my list and would like to do longer more remote rivers in Alaska. Each solo experience increases my appreciation of river running and makes me a better boater.
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Old 11-08-2009   #14
thornton, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1969
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 600
Originally Posted by buckmanriver View Post
Two questions?
First, does the park service keeps record of solo trips and makes them available to the public?
I would not be surprised if an eighteen year old person has made the trip solo in the winter. That obliviously being the youngest age a permit holder can be.
Second, what is the significance of such a trip when compared to 17 year old Zac Sunderlands solo sailing trip around the world this year?
The significance of a solo trip is like mental masturbation, it represents different things to different people at different ages in their lives. I personally have always prefered to trip with other people no matter what age I was.
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Old 11-08-2009   #15
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 567
Soloing the Salt must have been great. That is one of my all time favorites. I would also distinguish between paddling alone on a day run and undertaking a multi-day trip where you spend days with only your thoughts and your agenda, as I saw, the original thread was discussing. Did not mean to diss the season river runner, which I am a member. There are too many Older paddlers who set the bar in this area that, considering our current equipment, can never really be equaled. I just hope to undertake these types of adventures with the goal of a deeper appreciation of the place and oneself.


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