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Old 12-20-2013   #1
Issip's Avatar
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Paddling Since: 2011
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 185
8 Weeks off, what to do?

Hi all, I’m hoping to get a little advice on what to do with 8 weeks off. I get a “sabbatical” every 7 years, the only catch is that it has to be continuous, so I must choose a time of year and take it all at once. I may have to take it this year, although I’m hoping to push it to next year to increase my experience (I've only been whitewater addicted for 3 years now).

That said, what time of year would you take it, and where would you go?

I’m open to anywhere in the world and am comfortable in ~ class III+ for overnight trips, class IV for day trips. I’d love to row the GC, I’ve only been down on a bologna boat, and my experience is limited to paddling my ~12′ raft – I’ve no frame and have no experience with oars yet. Even if I did a 25 day GC trip, I’d still have half my sabbatical left!

Any suggestions will be appreciated!

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Old 12-20-2013   #2
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 405
I want your job!

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Old 12-20-2013   #3
oarframe's Avatar
Gardnerville, Nevada
Paddling Since: 00
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 447
If you have to take it this year you better hurry......
Seriously, I'm way jealous. Go have fun! Take that mini max and start in WY and push it down the Green to the Colorado.
Or........ I can see your dilemma...... to many possibilities...
more snow = more water
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Old 12-20-2013   #4
Lakewood, Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 163
You could learn to kayak in 8 weeks.
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Old 12-20-2013   #5
Issip's Avatar
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Paddling Since: 2011
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 185
I am planning to start pool lessons/sessions for kayaking, but I'll be bringing my wife along for most if not all of the fun - she freaks out when she's sees someone roll and insists she'll never kayak.

Although, if I get a frame for the raft and she learns to row she can be my support boat! Problem is I doubt she'd want to pilot in class III+ water .

I'm also considering getting a frame and and IK, so I can solo the Puma and she can run the IK or vice-verse.

I'd also consider an interesting multi-day trip in central/south America that looks fun to just be tourists on - and I've seen a lot of carnage video of the Zambezi River in Africa. I am on a budget, but I've saved for 7 years for this.

My current plan is to apply for permits at the Chama, San Juan, Desolation, Dinosaur, the 4 rivers, Salt, and Rogue and the 2015 GC, see what I pull and talk to my friends at the Adobe Whitewater club to see what they pull.

What I really want to know though, since this may be the only time in my life that I have the time and money to do pretty much whatever I want, is what "do this in your lifetime" experience would you recommend?

Thanks again, I appreciate the ideas!
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Old 12-20-2013   #6
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 429
I've always told myself if I won powerball I would go on a summer/year of multi days And buy my way into commercial trips if the permits didn't align. Selway middle main hells jarbidge rogue cataract Illinois middlefeather grand salt. Probably impossible but would be something to pull off.
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Old 12-21-2013   #7
West By God, Wyoming
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 289
I guess try to time it with the spring run off. Mid April to Mid June, go south to north. See what permits you can get.
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Old 12-21-2013   #8
fdon's Avatar
Christopher Creek, Arizona
Paddling Since: 1969
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 288
You could score a late Dec. launch cancellation on the GC, do 25 days. Score a January cancellation and do 25 more days. I know a fellow who did just that one winter. He needed two weeks afterwards just to get back into reality.
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Old 12-21-2013   #9
cataraftgirl's Avatar
Sandy, Utah
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 3,121
Originally Posted by Issip View Post

Although, if I get a frame for the raft and she learns to row she can be my support boat! Problem is I doubt she'd want to pilot in class III+ water .
My guess is, if you get a frame and let her learn to row the Puma, she'll be claiming it as hers pretty quick. Then you can buy either an IK or a slightly bigger raft & frame. If you're looking at multi-day trips, two small rafts & frames will allow you guys to self support anywhere comfortbaly (except the GC).

Like someone said.....start south in May or June, and head north in June or July. All depends on what rivers you like, and what ones you've always wanted to do. Idaho rivers would definitely be on my list. Deso/Lodore/Yampa also. I'd also plan some time to see the sites along the way, and you also have to have resupply/relax/laundry days figured in.

Whatever you decide....I'm jealous
"We are all visitors to this time, this place. We are just passing through. Our purpose here is to observe, to learn, to grow, to love....and then we return home."
Australian Aboriginal Proverb
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Old 12-23-2013   #10
KSC's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,032
Seems like you're thinking way too small. If I had that much time I would pick an international place to travel to and soak it all in. You can go run Deso in a ready any old time. Not sure how practical it is to rent rafting equip but I would research it. Or if your girl is into riding as a duckie and you could learn to kayak that might work. I'll bet you could have a really cool experience at any of the many classic whitewater destinations: Chile, Peru, Nepal, Africa, central america, etc. With that much time you could even drive down to Mexico.Or go north and run the Alsek. Don't have a lot specifics but I would start doing some research. Paddling desert and Idaho rivers in the West is awesome but I would go for a grander adventure.

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