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Old 10-08-2012   #31
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,135
I row a cat, so I have never understood the concept of "you need more weight", but besides that, if I did not bring my own passenger,
my boat would not be rigged for a passenger.

And I could claim I am able to get down many rivers 100% certain not to flip, but what fun would that be???
I like to take the "E" Ride, to get a little too close to those monster holes just to see how deep they really are.
No guarantees, if you want to stay dry, stay home!

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Old 10-08-2012   #32
wildh2onriver's Avatar
irvine, California
Paddling Since: 1987
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 1,197
I was trip leading a GC trip years ago, when a friend flipped in 24.5 and one of his passengers freaked out because of the swim. She wanted to ride on my boat for the next week or more, and that sucked because I already had two passengers, but I accommodated her request. I resented that the entire time because it changed the demographics completely, added more work to my load already--all, because my friend didn't screen his invitee. I won't do that again, and I will never boat with my friend again (countless other reasons why, not the least of which is he is always late by hours, and he doesn't do squat in camp).

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Old 10-09-2012   #33
Randaddy's Avatar
Eastern Slope, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1980
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2,404
It sounds like your wife doesn't trust your skills as an oarsman, probably because she knows you, and you lack of experience, well. Next time you go on a river trip you should leave her at home.

My wife was nervous for her first Grand trip but she had total faith in me because I was taking her on a trip I had done before and I have lots of experience on more difficult river sections. Needless to say, she stayed in the boat - and if she hadn't she would have chalked it up to a fluke and given me a second chance.

Taking your nervous wife on a section above your skill set in a tiny boat at high water sounds like your foolishness, not the trip leader's! I wouldn't ask my wife to hop on a dirt bike with me to hit a few jumps because I have never done that before and I don't want her to have a bad experience while I'm learning something potentially dangerous.

What we didn't experience from your story is how you looked in that little boat. If you were carrying some group gear and were hitting shit sideways they might have determined your wife needed to high side for you to keep you- and the group- out of trouble. It's also really awkward to have someone else's lady want to ride with you because they don't trust their man. Usually the next step is she ends up in the experienced boatman's tent and the trip becomes really uncomfortable!
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Old 10-09-2012   #34
Little Rock, Arkansas
Paddling Since: 1978
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 61
Once again, thanks for the feedback: I asked for it. Our group gear consisted of 4 coolers of ice, one food, lots of beverages, and personal gear. My SuperPuma was lightly loaded. There were 2 14' rafts one passenger each, one 16 2 passengers, one 16'cat, one 18' raft (with 4 passengers).
Hindsight, should have passed on this one and waited for lower water or a transitional/training trip. I just didn't want to miss this chance.
Don't have to worry about my wife going on another trip: she's done. Happy to do our lazy stuff here in Ark.
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Old 10-09-2012   #35
slickhorn's Avatar
Seattle, Washington
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 365
Originally Posted by Wavester View Post
Well...I almost flipped in Big Mallard this year trying to get cute and go left of the big rock. Bottom line is anyone can flip on any rated river, just make a small mistake is all it takes.
Originally Posted by Rich View Post
And I could claim I am able to get down many rivers 100% certain not to flip, but what fun would that be???
I like to take the "E" Ride, to get a little too close to those monster holes just to see how deep they really are.
The experienced boatman should know, on a given run, what are the parameters for each of these experiences. That's when you are boating in control, and YOU pick, intentionally, from the range of options between the two poles described above. "step up run" is not the place to take passengers, right?

If you want her to boat again, you'll have to rebuild that trust. moderate water on runs you have dialed. if that goes well, a simulated, controlled practice of a flip. then, maybe. Create a good experience. a layover day with some good hiking, make the trip about other things.

bottom line is it should be fun. no one likes to be terrified on the river, and when you are a passenger who can't dictate the outcome, it amplifies that. Terrified and dependent, in the back country: who would ever find that fun? It's ok to do those step up runs, but solo.

There are lots of great rivers out here like the lower main salmon john day rogue hells canyon etc that are more mellow. Heck, the main is really a fun III+ trip at more moderate flows. Learn which runs at which flows you can make that 100% good time happen.

And it doesn't hurt to scout ....

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