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Old 03-31-2014   #21
Salida, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1986
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 728
Originally Posted by whip View Post
And as long as it's true confessions I drove my raft into the meat of the ledgehole of Lave at 25K cfs both spare oars strapped tightly. The biggest piece of oar we found was 4 ft long. That was an interesting swim!
All bets are off once you go in the ledge hole. Disaster in Lava - A rapid in the Grand Canyon - YouTube

I too have seen damaged blades when placed to the bow. Have yet to see damage with them to the rear. Very unscientific survey there tho...

And I agree that most rapids are over or almost over within that 5 second window after losing an oar, and efforts are most likely better spent managing the position of the boat to improve chances of safe passage. There are of course exceptions to that.

I find the blades forward interfere with passengers getting back in the boat, whether the swim was voluntary or involuntary. And handles forward also makes for a convenient oar rest.

All things considered, I'm better off with blades to the the rear.

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Old 03-31-2014   #22
dirtbagkayaker's Avatar
Bazzaro, World
Paddling Since: 2020
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,327
I usually line up bow down stream but get pin balled off every rock spinning 360's. I have even came out up-side-down a time or two and I am hear to testify that you can break your blades no matter what way you strap them to your boat. I can also tell you that no matter how you strap them oars to your boat, it would have been quicker if you just did it the other way! Thats murphy's law.

Bound is boatless man
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