river SUP safety - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 07-28-2009   #1
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RFV, CO
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river SUP safety

So I have not tried SUP yet. I will get around to it soon. That said, I love my raft and enjoy some surfing on my ocean body board (Elemenohpee) and some down river body board on a RMR. Personally, I do not use any kind of leash system on my board.

I see many SUP paddlers wearing a standard surf board leash attached to their jacket with a tether system. As we have recently had a discussion on the way that tether systems work, I'm curious to see what other in the white water community believe. Do you as a SUP rider use the metal tab, or just run it through the plastic buckle?

When I do get a chance to try it, I sure do not want a leash attached to me.

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Old 07-28-2009   #2
 
KVBA TV8 Vail weatherman/Colorado Kayaker, Colorado
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I have gone back and forth but most recently have gone with no leash. At least on class III to low IV stuff as it scares me to have any rope/leash in the water with me, regardless of the release set up. That said if I wear it on the river at all it velcros around/to the metal ring with the harness strap running thru the ring.

And try it sooner than later. It is such a fun sport. My first run on one was three seasons ago and now, after 16 years of kayaking, feel it is a great new challenge. A surf inspired method to cruise the river, lake, reservoir, ocean or inlet. Sky is the limit on these and as designs continue to evolve itís only going to get better.

If you have any questions or want to try one out, drop me a line.

hobie
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www.surftech.com
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Old 07-28-2009   #3
 
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Lakewood, Colorado
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I've only paddled SUP in mild water. It seems, in higher water, maybe holding onto the leash along with the t-grip of the paddle might work. In the event of a swim you still have the leash but can release the board much more rapidly than if it's attached to the tether ring. I'll ask a guy who paddles them far more than I do and in far more challenging water.
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Old 07-29-2009   #4
 
4CRS, Durango, Colorado
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We have been running a web tow type leash binered on to the board and to the round ring on a rescue jacket. I am thinking that a switch to a traditional surf style leash might be the way to go though because in a bad situation the surf style leash will break away and webbibg will not.
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Old 07-29-2009   #5
 
4CRS, Durango, Colorado
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We have been running a web tow type leash binered on to the board and to the round ring on a rescue jacket. I am thinking that a switch to a traditional surf style leash might be the way to go though because in a bad situation the surf style leash will break away and webbibg will not.
Hobie, I am sure you have been getting after it more than we have but I havefound the leash essential in WW. My board caught an eddy in Westwater (no leash), and and I continued downstream, I had to get out and send a kayak upstream to push it back out into the current as I was walled in. Also, I have found that if I fall I can grab the leash and get back to the board more quickly.
SoHobie, I see the Surftech under your name, congrats, and when are you coming out with a WW SUP?
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Old 07-29-2009   #6
 
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If you attach your leash to a qr belt/tow tether combo, you will have an out in case your leash get's caught up. I like having a leash in bigger water. It allows me get back to my board easier when I am swimming a big rapid. See this link for a photo on how we set it up......
C4 Waterman C MAC | Colorado Kayak Supply Blog

I am not sure if a traditional leash will "break away" under normal tension, but you can also consider a cotter pin relaese system that has a pull tab for a release. I think it is Dakine....I have one of these too and it is a less expensive option.....
Murrays Sports: DAKINE SUP KAINUI LEASH 12' WITH CUFF AND CLIP
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Old 07-29-2009   #7
 
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SUP is the new rollerblading

Bought a SUP and have gone out 5 days straight. It is exactly like rollerblading a river, except you don't look as dorky. I imagine Hobie in some pink tights could change that. It has made us excited about the Class 2-3 run that we had stopped kayaking because it was boring. Now it's fun again because it's totally different to try to rollerblade down the rapids. We go no leash but definitely lose the board when it goes eddy and I go current or it goes current and I go eddy. A leash on the quick release vest seems safe, especially a flexi surf leash.
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Old 07-29-2009   #8
 
KVBA TV8 Vail weatherman/Colorado Kayaker, Colorado
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Dude, don't make break out the spandex. Teal not pink.

I do use a leash in big water at times, but with the rivers low there has not been a need lately. On the upper eagle and class III and IV stuff I have passed on a leash due to all the other debris/branches/rocks it can hook on in shallower water. Fins as well. For runs like Gore, I will use one for sure as loosing the board there would suck.

And I did sign on with Surftech at OR. They have very similar interests and I am going to work with them on a new board as well as several other projects. There are a lot of things that can be done in design to not only run bigger and tougher stuff but also advance the appeal in other disciplines. Paddleboarding is taking off huge and there are so many things we have learned in the kayaking industry that will help advance it in ways many never thought of.

As for rollerblading, ahhhhh. I find it more like skateboarding or surfing down the river. Being a paddler makes it a bit easier but I agree, it makes low class runs a lot more fun. And the fitness side. I have dropped 60 lbs since I started a few years ago. 258 down to 198. Never been as whipped in all the years of kayaking as I am after even a simple ride down Shoshone. Give it a try.

hobie

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Old 07-29-2009   #9
 
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Sooo.... Is there a difference between a long board and a sup?
I can get a pro deal on firewire surfboards and they have a longboard...

Would that work? Or is there a difference...
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Old 07-29-2009   #10
 
KVBA TV8 Vail weatherman/Colorado Kayaker, Colorado
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I guess it depends on the size of the board and you. Yes, there is a difference in boards but the main factor is having a board buoyant enough to support your weight that you can paddle off of. The type of water you paddle is another factor. I have even seen one paddler use an old windsurfer to get the job done. Not nearly ideal but still worked. Stability is key when you get started but it is an easy sport to learn fairly fast. Kayakers pick it up quick since they are already comfortable with a paddle in hand and understand bracing and paddle strokes. But to answer your question they are different styles of boards. Similar but different.

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