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Discussion Starter #1
I am moving up to Denver from New Orleans this summer. I checked out the CWWA website and it looks like they have cruises just about every weekend on the III-IV type rivers that are in my skill range. It sounds like a great way to hook up with boaters for river trips if you are new to the area (like I will be). Anyone done any of the CWWA events and have any comments on them.

Thanks!
 

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I joined CWWA last year, the cruises are very well run. It's a great way to meet local boaters and there is usually someone on each trip who knows the section of water very well.
 

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It's a great way to get out and boat alot and meet a bunch of other boaters if you are new to the sport or new to the area. They have bunch of camping weeknds as well where everyone camps out and boats a few days in a row. I'd highly recommend it for someone in your situation.
 

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I've been in the CWWA for years and it is a great way to meet people. The trips tend towards the lower end of the difficulty scale.
 

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Can I hijack this thread? Ok then,

When I first moved to Colorado, way back in like 95 or 96. I was sitting at the put-in for Upper Mish on the Poudre waiting to see of someone would show up, as I hadn't met anyone to paddle with yet. It was one of the big years and the poudre was running 5 1/2 feet, aka HUGE! NO-ONE was running upper mish that day. As I was sitting there I saw a large # of cars w/kayaks heading upstream, so I decided to check them out. They were a CWWA group that was going to run upper rustic, figuring incorrectly that it would be a mellow intermediate trip. They had a ton of people already, but were super nice and took me on. There were 18 people in the group and we split into 3 groups of 6. Right of the bat the first rapid was super pushy, and had several big lateral waves alternating left/right/left, no big deal if you have a decent brace. I was in the last group and we eddied out at the bottom to try and surf the big waves in the runout. We noticed a paddler running up the shore yelling at us to chase swimmers, turns out 11 out of 18 in the group swam the very 1st rapid that day. So that is my CWWA story.
 

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yeah, some are. it is a good way to meet new faces, or put names to familiar faces too!

badkins, sounds similar to my first real trip with the crew, three out of 15 swam the very first rapid. it was a close call and one or maybe two people called it a day right there and then.

I think it's easier to get over your head when there's a group of people who are experienced and confident going down it, when you on your own wouldn't touch it... but a good group none-the-less!! I'll join again!
 

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I will admit my bias (see WS thread) because I am the CWWA cruise director.

CWWA is a great way to get to know other boaters. A majority of the paddlers are on the lower end of the difficulty scale, but can be a lot of fun to paddle with. This year we have added some more difficult cruises such as Bailey Canyon, Numbers, and Slaughterhouse among others. Check out of website at www.coloradowhitewater.org for the latest.

If you are an experienced boater, we need to you give back to the community. Everyone was a beginner at some point and volunteering for CWWA is a good way to pay back those who escorted you through the big stuff when you were a newbie. More importantly, by supporting CWWA, you are supporting access and boater's rights in the state of Colorado (something you all should appreciate). The club will be what the members want it to be. If you would like to see CWWA step it up a bit, then you and your boating buds should join and voice your opinion.

and yes, I have my own story (actually two) about CWWA trips on the upper Rustic. I think it is due to the participants over estimating their ability even when the ratings of the cruises are pumped up a bit.

If you have questions about CWWA feel free to email me at [email protected] or [email protected]
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the info!

I guess I will see some of you guys on cruises this summer. Thanks for the stories too. 11 swimmers on the first rapid sounds like a pretty insane trip!
 

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CWWA members tend to overestimate their abilities on some of the more difficult cruises. They are no different than any other paddler wanting to move up from the easier stuff. The club is just a way for them to find other paddlers that want to do the same. If the leaders would screen the paddlers better beforehand, that could help but even though someone says they ran Bridges or some other run doesn’t necessarily mean they ran it well.

I do belong to the CWWA and I have led cruises in the past and will in the future but I make sure I screen out the ‘applicants’ over the phone so that I can be somewhat assured that they have the skills they need. I have also made sure that I don’t volunteer to run any trips during the usual high water times so I can avoid all those swimmers in the first rapid of the run. I don’t like to spend my day on the river chasing down swimmers and gear.

Even if you don’t do any club activities, you should consider joining anyway because of all the good work the club does behind the scenes with access issues. Heck, it’s what… $25 bucks a year? Just join and send them your money so they can put it to better use than going for a few 6 packs of micro brews. :)
 

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Geezer- you must be aka b-bob.

I like to schedule cruises at high water. It is great rescue practice! :twisted:

I think I have pulled more out of the white mile of upper rustic than all my other river trips combined. I don't know what it is about that drop, fun boogie water that seems to trip up lesser experienced folks and sweeps who eddie out in pourovers to help (sorry Brody).

All - I need help with the Rio Grande Weekend and Durango Weekend. If you have experience on runs in those areas and would like to help out showing people down, let me know.
 

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As a new paddler member of CWWA [I have two seasons under my belt] I can say that in my experience CWWA cruise leaders do an excellent job screening paddlers out who aren't at the appropriate skill level.

I have twice been told "Based on your description of your abilities and the runs you have paddled so far, you are probably not ready for this run for the following reasons ..... You might try this one _______ and maybe this other one_____ and then next year have a look at the run we are taking."

While it was a little bit embarassing to be told I wasn't up to the level of the trip, I'm alive and paddling and appreciate that it probably wasn't easy for the trip leader to make the decision either. All in all, the CWWA cruises that I have been on have been great and were run by people with some good sense.
 
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