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Old 06-25-2015   #11
BruceB's Avatar
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1986
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 170
Dressed to swim too!

Bad runs happen but doing that kind of run in a bathing suit?

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Old 06-25-2015   #12
openboat's Avatar
Longmont, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1986
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 227
I'm exhausted from watching it. Glad you could walk away from it.

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Old 06-25-2015   #13
All over, Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 37
That was a total cluster fuck! Looks like the dude had absolutely no business being there. Swimsuits?? WTF? What were the oar tethers made of, shoelaces?
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Old 06-25-2015   #14
cedar city, Utah
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 1,928
Wow, that was difficult to watch, especially considering we are heading out to the region in a couple days. Damn it looks big and pushy in there at those levels. Guessing we won't see the Gorge considering the current flows but in general I have no desire to be close to that scrap metal ever.

I have noticed a general lack of gear in the last few high water videos on the Ark. All the info I am seeing shows water temps around 55-60F. Do most people not wear some sort of cold water protection this time of the year? Difficult to get back into a tall tubed rig when you have no dexterity and not to mention the need to be able to swim agressively and/or defensively. And at those levels where were the helmets? Fuck if I want to be in a river going that fast without head protection. And not to mention the objective risk of righting a flipped oar rig without a helmet.

Be safe out there. Far too many deaths already in CO.

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Old 06-25-2015   #15
xena13's Avatar
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 244
Yes, it was exhausting watching it. Yes, many things went wrong. But that was a great video of the event. Thanks for posting it! It gave me an opportunity to see what it is like in there at that level without risking my life and my boat. Watching it I said "Fu*#!" then he said, "Fu*#!" then as he was going into the shore with all the metal I said "Oh Sh$t!" then he said "Oh Sh$t!". It was almost like being there.
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Old 06-25-2015   #16
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1998
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 24
Hichek, I love you man!! Ernie

P.S. Did your Mom see that video and will she ever let your Dad boat again? Was that your 5th or 6th lap through there at these levels? You've been boating with that ghetto boater in Grand Junction again...
What are you doing HERE!!! For crying out loud...GO BOAT!!
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Old 06-25-2015   #17
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1986
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 184
Man, that was hard to watch! I launched at 5pm Sunday so wasn't far behind you.

As for the folks bashing attire, easy, it was hot as balls in RG on Sunday. I was in there when most of the canyon was shaded and was totally comfortable in a dry top and board shorts. And yes, I had my wetsuit and drysuit handy for colder temps. It just wasn't necessary.

As evidenced by my lost oar earlier in the thread, I also had some carnage in RG. I have taken worse swims, but I really can't remember when. We cleaned up everything pictured in the video, then proceeded to fire it straight into the middle of the hole at Boat Eater at 6k with expected results. The surf was violent enough to snap a 2000# tubular webbing oar tether. I wasn't cold after the swim though and I was in the water quite a bit longer than OP.

I will write it up an honest reckoning with lessons learned so others can know and hopefully learn, even though I know bucketboater will troll the shit out of it.

Hichek, I do have a few pieces of advice if they are wanted...
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Old 06-25-2015   #18
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 244
Originally Posted by bucketboater View Post
Im going to be honest my bro.You're a hot mess.Swap out the oar rights to pins and clips. Get all that rope off your foot bar and hit the curlers head on and dont you ever under any circumstance be the lead boat. hope this helps.

i hope that was posted with some sarcasm?

pins and clips, really?

he is a good oarsman, and at least he has the balls to run the big stuff. most of the people on this forum, with a few exceptions, would not run that section at half of those flows. nor would they have the state of mind to right their own boat. many would have abandoned their boat and walked out after the flip.
his boat, well that thing is old. and the frame is heavy. but, i have been on the water with him and he is better at it than most.
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Old 06-25-2015   #19
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 36
That was definitely a full lunch. I was in there on Saturday evening and I agree that the temp was reasonable, but I still dressed to swim. The protracted time to access redundant gear certainly exacerbated the experience. One thing that I learned after loosing an oar in Lava and ending upside down on avocado rock was to compress my oar locks to hold the oars more tightly, especially in big water. All of the spots that pushed you around hit me as well, the Gorge at those levels was certainly the real thing!
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Old 06-25-2015   #20
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 30
Lateral wave in the Narrows

Originally Posted by Andy H. View Post
Here ya go:

After hearing the story I was sorry I asked about it. The video gets pretty painful after the tube blows out on some of that "historic" scrap metal they've got down in the Gorge. That junk gives me the willies every time I float past it!

...Gotta wonder what it would take to put a cutting torch with a long hose on a rail service car some day in winter when flow's at a minimum. Talk about man-made hazards in the river!
I've been wondering the same thing about the scrap metal. Some of the old railroad trail that supports the bank through the Narrows would prob need to be replaced if it got removed. Would be a big effort, but how awesome it would be to float the Gorge knowing the most of heavy iron was removed.

Thanks for posting the video. Pretty epic. Shows how a few altered variables can alter the whole run.

Not being critical here of the rafter, just offering some thoughts. I am a kayaker, so it was interesting to watch. For me, running the Narrows at that level, I would take the huge lateral much differently. There is so much water getting compressed in that area, and bouncing off the right wall and moving left. In my kayak, I would have hit it far far right, with nose of my boat even pointed right, knowing that when I hit it, I would be moved across the river left and the front of my kayak wanting to turn left (hopefully straightening out, if calculated properly). So when I the raft coming into it more river left, and then the front of the raft pointing left, it didn't seem surprising to see it get side surfed into the river left shoreline. (again, I know, it is easy for me to say now, from the comfort of my chair). Again, in terms of kayaks, the more bulbous the kayak (imagine a creek boat) the more I would expect to get side surfed to the left shoreline, so a light raft I would think the same...

Would be interested in hearing rafters perspectives on this.

Great video! Thanks for sharing and glad it turned out ok.

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