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Old 06-09-2010   #1
mustloverafting's Avatar
Aspen, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1983
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 65
Safety Tips---Please Add Your Own

Please add to this thread of any personal tips you have.

If you fall out in a class 4 or 5 rapid and you can't get out of the undertow....curl up in a ball and usually you will be spit out.

If you have a DRE (Down River Equipment) seat, strap it to the bar behind you so when you get bumped, the seat will not bump you out. (This has saved me in Dagger and yesterday at Shoshone).

Keep all straps and ropes tight around your boat.

Put a pad or a poco pad on all dry boxes that are riding in front of the oarsman or oarswoman or oarsdog. A friend of mine tore off his fingernail 3 weeks ago on the MFS in Idaho and broke that same finger. We pushed out to get medical attention. It took another 4 days before he got medical help.

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Old 06-09-2010   #2
Cheyenne, Wyoming
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 217
Mother Nature Is Stronger Than You Are. Know your limits. Don't get talked into boating water you can't handle. It's better to walk away, than be carried away.

If you have gills, run everything!

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Old 06-09-2010   #3
rivervibe's Avatar
Salida, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 379
Always remember to BREATHE (except when you're underwater, or have gills), also, you're mind is the best piece of safety equipment you have... make sure you slow down enough to put it go good use!
Please take a look at my Photo Web Gallery.
I also have here some gear reviews (that I might update soon).
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Old 06-09-2010   #4
frisco, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 64
I keep a climbing nut on the boat in case I need to tie up against a cliff.
full yellow life jacket
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Old 06-09-2010   #5
no tengo
mania's Avatar
Baytopia, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1876
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,765
There are so many but my main one would be use your aggressive swim as a first choice over the defensive swim. Get out of whitewater as quick as you can.

my second tip is don't launch in flood conditions.
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Old 06-09-2010   #6
SimpleMan's Avatar
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: '05
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 394
Before a situation, designate and delegate in case of a situation. Nothing worse than a boat with all chiefs and no indians.
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Old 06-09-2010   #7
Snowhere's Avatar
Buena Vista, Colorado
Paddling Since: 93
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 844
If you dig big high water, envest in a NRS anti-gravity shirt. It will give you 10 additional lbs of floatation for the big water. Yea, no one ever swims big water, but shit happens. I have had skirts blow from the force of a hole and everyone in their boat is just in-between swims or flips. I don't use my anti gravity shirt for normal flows, but when the water gets big, I wear it. It could mean the difference between just a bad swim and a flush drowning if things don't go as planned.
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Old 06-09-2010   #8
cpollema's Avatar
loveland, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 144
Safety gear is essential, but everyone on the boat needs to know how to use it. Spend some time training on your gear. Practice throwing the bags...more than once. Find a safe stretch and put someone on the water to be pulled back in. Flip the boat and flip it back. Practice knots and rigging mechanical advantage. Train...train...train.
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Old 06-09-2010   #9
Dipshit with the most.
carvedog's Avatar
Bellevue, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1991
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 2,494
Originally Posted by Snowhere View Post
If you dig big high water, envest in a NRS anti-gravity shirt. It will give you 10 additional lbs of floatation for the big water.
Never even heard of this. Sounds like a good idear.

My safety overkill that I do is to have a throw bag at the front and rear d ring and one at each oar tower. That way no matter where I come up on the boat I am only 4 feet away from a throw bag case the boat is not right side up and needs to be belayed in to shore.

The other thing that I usually do is have every throw bag get thrown right before the trip. I didn't the last trip and my first throw got all bound up and fell ohhh about two feet short. Sorry about that Jeff - it will never happen again.
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Old 06-09-2010   #10
ednaout's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 966
Paddle/Raft with people you feel safe with!
When you want to get out and scout something - DO IT, regardless of whether someone says its unnecessary - its not a waste of time!
When you run something that is above your skill level, you are putting your party in a sketchy situation too...

"You know that old trees just grow stronger and old rivers grow wilder, everyday..."
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