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Old 04-17-2010   #1
The Russian
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SLC, Utah
Paddling Since: 2005
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LOST: GoPro Camera in Skull on WW

4/17/2010, Lost my camera in Skull. Camera is small grey GoPro HD in a waterproof case. We flipped in Surprise and my boat ran Skull upside down with the camera attached to the tripod which was attached to my stern. I'd gladly pay reward for it if found and lots of river karma! It was some awesome footage to pre flip

Please PM me if found.

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Old 04-18-2010   #2
cataraftgirl's Avatar
Sandy, Utah
Paddling Since: 1997
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That sucks Alex. Your first trip with the stern mount. I was looking forward to seeing that video. I feel like we kinda jinxed you by saying...... stern mount sounds cool unless you flip. Sorry. I'm assuming the whole tripod came off? Does the GoPro itself float?
We lost a helmet cam last year on Deso. Had just about given up on it when it bobbed to the surface about a mile or so downriver. Eagle-eyed teenager saw it and grabbed it.
Another question ..... how did your Super Nova work out in the flip/swim?
Good Luck. I'll bet someone will fish it out.
Katie J.

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Old 04-18-2010   #3
Crested Butte, Colorado
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I let my kid row us through surprise last week, and he tried to flip us there too! 18 foot tubes kept him from being successful.
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Old 04-18-2010   #4
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Unincorporated Douglas County, Colorado
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Alex, that's a tough way to get the season going. Was your little guy with you? How was the Skull swim or did you get out before you got there? I hope you get your camera back. I'm sure the video would be good.
Karma is like this: If we set causes in motion the effects come back to us.
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Old 04-18-2010   #5
The Russian
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Thanks for the comments guys. The tripod worked perfect actually! I am going to do it again, except I am going to tether the camera to the boat, so it will drag if the tripod breaks again by hitting Razor rock in Skull (lol).

What happened was I was teaching my friend to row, I was sitting in the back while she was rowing my boat with two paddlers in the front. We were doing great, it was her first big whitewater and everything was going well, I got some sweet footage too prior to Surprise.

The first mistake we made, we came way too close to the boat in front of us and didn't give enough space for him to get through the rapid. As he was dropping in, we hit his stern with our bow and it stalled the bow and turned the boat to the left (sideways) into the left hole of Surprise.

The next error was the lack of experience of our captain, by not squaring with the hole. I can't blame her, her adrenaline was through the roof at this point and she was exhausted already by muscling all the rapids prior to it. So we ended up taking the left hole completely sideways.

Following our next mistake was the deer in the headlights. We all froze up and didn't high side at all. This was my first ever flip and I totally locked up, we all just sat there as the boat slowly flipped. I was impressed with the Maravia how stable it was and how much time it gave us to highside, which we didn't. Live and learn.

After the flip we all came up successfully and made it to the flipped boat. Everyone got on top and looked down at Skull with panic in our eyes. My friend Chris came up in NRS cat and took all my passengers into his boat. We could have eddied my boat out before Skull, but everyone was still in survival mode and didn't think straight.

Next lesson I learn is to put the flip lines on the SAME side of the boat. I had one flip line on each side acting as oar and learn again! Going to Sid's today to pick up another pair of flip lines. I could have flipped my boat before Skull and saved my camera if I knew what the hell I was doing! Practice flipping when you can in a controlled environment, it will save you a lot of time, money and lives!

The boat ran the Skull upside down perfectly, a lose paddle was sitting on top of the boat the whole time, I was impressed how boats run rapids on their own! Next time I am not touching the oars at all and letting the current do all the work (lol). I jumped into my buddies boat and chased my boat down. After Bowling alley we caught up to the boat, eddied it out, swapped the flip lines and successfully flipped it back.

I was happy to see that all my equipment (minus the camera tripod) was in tact perfectly. Nothing shifted, nothing got wet and it was ready to be rowed. So the winter project didn't go to waste.

The tripod broke off completely, leaving me one leg for the memory (lol). The camera was attached to the whole tripod, so most likely it's at the bottom of the Colorado now

So we are heading up to the lake next weekend with the kids and dry suits to practice flipping boats and getting back into it.

Supernova worked awesome, I was completely dry, very happy with it!

So another great trip down Westwater, everyone made out ok, a few bumps and bruises from the flip. WEAR HELMETS!!!! Our girl captain got smacked by an oar, big bump.

Hopefully this write up will help others not to make the same mistakes

(now 2 lost cameras to Westware gods)
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Old 04-18-2010   #6
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fuck yeah.... good story. glad everyone is ok.
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Old 04-19-2010   #7
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Steamboat Springs, Colorado
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always attach a leash!... i was lucky enough to learn that lesson at a pool roll session or I would have found myself in the same situation. Best of luck finding it, but unfortunately those things don't float. I usually will take zip ties to attach the leash, seem to work pretty well
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Old 04-19-2010   #8
The Russian
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SLC, Utah
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This is what camera looked like before it was donated to the river booty

PS: My hat was recovered twice during that flip....
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Old 04-20-2010   #9
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Gardnerville, Nevada
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just curious, how many people did it take to flip it back over? looks like you had a bit of gear.
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Old 04-20-2010   #10
The Russian
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SLC, Utah
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Just two people, my buddy put his raft next to mine, so when we had it half way we stepped onto his raft instead of falling into the water. From that point it was harder to finish the flip since we had to muscle it and not use our weight to pull the boat. I think falling into the water is a faster route to take. Next time I am hitting Westwater I am going to flip my raft on purpose to practice. I will record it again

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