I took a neophyte down Brown's (through Sidel's suckhole) yesterday. Before then he had only run the boulder playpark once last week. He did fine, swimming twice. Widowmaker and S-bend are tricky water, especially in the toilet bowl, as mentioned. Teach the newby to lean the ducky for peel-outs, eddy outs, and let them know that the most stable position is paddling hard. My friend cleaned Zoom Flume w/o issue. He swam Sidel's. I told him if he was not comfortable not to run it. Two things about him:
1) he is comfortable swimming rapids, and has done so before
2) he IS gung ho
He had an awesome time and was totally psyched by the experience. I say go for it and be ready for rescues. He self rescued once and we pulled out the ducky the other time. Pretty good for his second day with a kayak paddle in hand.
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