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Old 06-04-2013   #11
SLC, Utah
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 111
Originally Posted by Gremlin View Post
I use River Brain Home - River Brain. Create an account. Float. Sign the river log. Click "make it private" and it creates a jounal entry. I enter cfs, who joined me, weather, other highlights of the trip. By making it private, you can then click on "statistics" and it will tell you total number of miles, unique miles, vertical feet decended, etc. searchable by date range. I started mine 09-16-12 (179 miles so far and 25 entries). I think it will be very helpful when the flows drop and I'm deciding the best options compared to previous experiences.

If you take a run and it isn't in the database, take the time to create it for your personal river log and everyone's benefit.
Signing the riverbrain logs (private or not) enters you into the competition categories for prizes too. Last year we gave out several gift cards, some free shuttles, etc. This year we may have more sponsors for gear and prizes.

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Old 06-04-2013   #12
Summit County, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 27
River Logs for Zenful Presence

I was raised in the river community with a tendency to strive for excellence and uphold visions of greatness. I am passionately at ease knowing most places I visit kayaking there are shared interests, mutual connections, and genuine appreciation for our social ties through the generations & sub cultural movements.

I keep a river journal to establish focus and a guide for visualizations conducive to rapid skill development and a firm mind state for clarity while on the river. Similarly, I care to develop a mindful perspective of my river experience with creative and artistic development. Coming from competition, many WW events, & an outdoors community supporting active, healthy, & socially responsible lifestyles, I am working towards well established river perspective with core skills balanced among evolving socio-cultural orientation.

This post is inspiring and one I hold dear to me in bonding with like-souls whom upkeep their organization of river skills and memories. I'm psyched to see the basics are regularly included. Flows, features, & a firm knowledge as well as tracking fluctuations in river sport involvement, getting to know well the characteristics of different features, time expectations & logistics, and meal plans are great ideas and I see the brief note sections as very productive. Very cool that there's a site for all this. I will check out River Brains and intrigued with getting on the river with other boaters whom keep records.

Mainly, I practice river mind frame & focus through writing exact details. In play boating these kinds of things include wave details... Exact descriptions of the tongue, foam pile, surges, height at various points, what exact sensations are noticed in a side surf, left, right, sliding forward, back, pivot pts., pts where you can slide further up the foam pile, exact sense of balance & edging angle to keep a good sense of self control in the feature. In a front surf, I may check out different speeds across the wave, wave height, sensations experienced while carving, problems, and solutions for initiating & sticking tricks with adjustments to technique by feature. Back surfing I look for a good, steady centered state of balance where I am open for a full range of motion getting to know the feature & form skills to satisfy particulars for agility in the specific wave or hole... back ferries to pts. of retention & pivot pts. to stay in feature. I may figure out skills progressions from feature to feature, variations to technique per trick, and new things to focus in on and practice to refine & progress.

Most of my skills focus is to bridge the gap in my abilities between river awareness and my ability to perform by gauging the subtleties of technique and river features.

Visualizations, meditation, and yoga all help me with river awareness. I include brief notes to cross-over skills from my yoga/meditation log (daily affairs) with specific river focus. These include sensations of being in the zone, physical cues & crossover in technique, meditative awareness, and development of zenful precision. From my documented explorations of paddling skills, river features, & other focal cross-over pts., I form deeply transformative visualizations for guidelines to my practice and river trips.

Expressing the magic and enchantment of river experience while transferring skills from the stand still mind-body connection of yoga to an active and dynamic mind-body-river sense of coordination, I am inspired to include a brief poetic depiction of moments attuned to the current. My goal here is to be mindful with a perspective in balance & harmony soul-boating, boater, kayak, talent, & river... forming a greater sensation of purpose within the outdoors and improved relevant environmental awareness.

Socio-cultural attunement while keeping well-established & solidified kayak skills I seek to uphold the honor, prestige, esteem, camaraderie, sheer joy, bonds of friendship and respect that form the integrity of our community-based subculture revolving with individual roles. For this my kayak journal may include photogenic moments to be on point with well-formed blogs & river stories. I jot notes of quintessential bonding that depict values of the river people, hospitality driven qualities, and the essence of camaraderie and bonding. Evolving this magic I may include how, why, and what about these reference points were enchanting as well as gain direction in what the characteristics these beautiful moments will accomplish conducive to evolved friendship, secure connections, and important dynamics for success. Some attention is given to shaping up from less refined rough moments as well.

All in all, each river log, to me, solidifies & refines skills from technique, river knowledge, ppl/partner/cultural knowledge and relevance, forms guidelines & focus, problem solves, nourishes, nurtures, and strengthens roles, reciprocity, my own perspective & all I can offer through skill development, refinement, and participation.

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Old 06-04-2013   #13
Summit County, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 27
Originally Posted by tommycolorado View Post
Wondering if anyone keeps journals/logs of their boat trips. I kept one last season (1st season w/a new boat) and now that I look back at it, seemed like a lot of writing for... nothing.
Regular reviews help to retain knowledge & evolve river skill developing your role in the river community.
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Old 06-04-2013   #14
God Amongst Men
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Phuoc My, Da Nang, THE 'NAM
Paddling Since: 1845
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,988
I have a 4x5 Moleskine that I log all my trips in. I log the following:

River Miles
Total Miles (each summer)
Camera Y/N
Video Y/N
4:20 Y/N

Started doing it in 2007, haven't regretted it yet. Just bought journal number 3 last week!
"Don't f$&@ing eddy out, just run it! Whaddya doin??" -LMyers
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Old 06-05-2013   #15
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Charleston, West Virginny
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 461
I scribble some basic notes (flow and features/descrip of the river at that level) in my guidebook as an easy reference. I also keep a GIS dataset/Map as a log of sorts.
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Old 06-06-2013   #16
Durango South, 4CRS
Paddling Since: 07
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 173
Originally Posted by deepsouthpaddler View Post
I have an excel spreadsheet for my paddle log. Have it since day 1. I do my log by river day... ie every day I paddle I make a log entry. My log has cumulative days on the river (ie started on day 1 the first day... now I am in the 600's), day on the river that year (start over at 1 every calendar year to easily figure how many days per year I get), date, river run name, difficulty class, swim count, and a comments section for flow, who I paddled with and anything noteworthy.
It's easy to spot the engineers in the room. I do something very similar in excel, but I also graph it to have a more visual way to see how the year is going compared to past years. It's kinda fun to watch the points add up over the season.

Here is what mine looks like.
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Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. - Helen Keller
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Old 06-06-2013   #17
Lakewood, Colorado
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 504
Mine is very basic but it goes back to day 1. Days are numbered each year. I wish I would have done it in Excel. Looks like this:

16. 6/2: Lawson through upper @ 300
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Old 06-06-2013   #18
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Albuquerque, New Mexico
Paddling Since: 1985
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 184
Trip notes.

Guess I'm lazy.
I just print the associated USGS flow chart for the period covered and write notes on the bottom, or back.
Then it goes into a three-ring binder, sorted by river.
Sadly, I can still keep track of river days for the current year at least, in my head.
Up to 10 so far, but heading up to the Gunny after work today.

Lately, I've been doing more trip reports on MB that I can refer people to, with pictures even.
Gotta love the MB.
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Old 06-06-2013   #19
Jackson, Wyoming
Paddling Since: 1492
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 283
Consistent, but not super detailed

I started out just keeping notes in the guidebooks I bought: dates I did the run, flow, basic impressions, and any major mishaps/events. Then, I started running stuff that wasn't in guidebooks, and had to start notebooks of my own. I still do a little of both. The notes have always been helpful in one year or another (especially as the years have piled up). Have been able to look at notes from an entire watershed/area for people heading that way, and even if I'm not going on the trip, been able to pass on good beta as to whether or not certain runs will or won't have decent water. Haven't transferred anything to computer/spreadsheets yet, as it's one of the ways I still truly enjoy handwriting.
So many rivers, so little time..........
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Old 06-07-2013   #20
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 62
I started one on my google drive, originally so I could track when buying and outfitting my raft paid off vs. renting driftboats...since then, it's transformed a bit to include mostly the basics:

Frame Setup (casting decks, sleeping decks, etc...)
Water Clarity
Notes section for fishing conditions, hatches and "ah-ha" moments.

Another thing that I appreciate with doing a raft log - or any log for that matter - is that it allows me to provide the next owner with a detailed account of the care/use that this boat has seen.

I do this with my vehicles too...mostly because I'm a geek, but a dealership upped my trade-in value becuase I had a log of every tank of gas, oil change, major service, rotation, etc to provide to them...

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