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Hi all,
I am looking for someone who has had experience(s) using a tandem IK loaded for multi- day use. How did it handle in rapids? How much of a load? What type of IK did you use? on what river section?
 

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Shapp
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Paddled the upper owyhee in 2011 in older style Lynx II at 2x flood stage starting on the SF Owyhee at Pipeline crossing to 3 forks. Good amount of Big water Class III, one Class IV (cabin rapid) and one IV+ (cable rapid). Ran it all, but lined about 100 yards of Cabin and full portage at the last huge set of holes at Cable. Trip report below and photo attached (1 at owyhee 2x flood stage). Only swam once on the upper owyhee on a bone head maneuver on a latteral wave.

something other than Hood - SF Owyhee 4/16-23/2011 - CascadeClimbers.com

Ran lots of other lower water runs like NF John Day, Grande Ronde, etc. with lots of gear. Handles pretty good, when real creeky and tight manouvering, like on the Uppper Chetco, we go single IKs, Singles can actually hold plenty for like a week long backpack trip style. (photos attached 2 NF John day low water, 1 NF John day medium water)

Singles on upper Chetco this year (to much tight manouvering ment a double would have sucked):
riverlog
 

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I've never used one myself but some of my paddling partners regularly use IK's for multi-day trips. Not entirely sure of all the brands, but I know at least a couple of friends have Tomcat Tandems. They usually handle fine fully loaded up to solid III-III+.

Lower Gunnison:



San Juan:



 

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Not me or mine, but a classic picture of the "Aire Freighter".

I've been looking for a deal on an IK for years, but always find them too late.
The kids may be big enough to push our 14 SB before I actually score an IK.
 

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Wow, I knew big rafts were good for supporting your dozen hardshell buddies, but I never knew a SuperLynx could do it!
I've done lots of multi-day trips in Lynx II's, and way back, in a Maravia tandem that was only 11'2" long. Both worked great. It takes a day or so to get used to pivoting the bigger size, but the hull speed is better than an equally loaded solo. The main key is to forego inflatable backrests, which take up too much space, and to load the heaviest stuff close to your back. This prevents the "flywheel effect".
 

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A buddy of ours came on the smith trip self supported. He dropped in at our camp up above the put in and met us on the river. 4 nites easy. Get a hammock.
 

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IKs are the sweet spot

for small river self support.

We routinely do the SF Salmon, Illinois, Jarbidge and other IV+ runs in IKs carrying self support gear. I've self supported in my IK on the Selway, MF Salmon, Salt, Yampa, Rogue, SF Salmon, Lower main salmon, Illinois, Jarbidge-Bruneau, MF Flathead, Lil NF Clearwater, Big Creek, Joseph Creek, the Grand Canyon Elwah, the Chetco, the grande ronde, the owyhee, the john day, the deschutes, the Virgin Narrows, the Verde, the Gila, and many smaller local Oregon/Washington runs.

Like in a gear raft, the biggest issue is learning how to manage the additional load. This affects route choice, because you need a little more time to maneuver. But short of trying to boof a 20' waterfall, I've never found a move I could make in an empty boat but not a gear boat. In fact, I've found more the other way, as I usually drop into some silly big holes my first day back in an empty boat, because a well packed gear IK is a hole punching machine. low, narrow, and long.

Packing is critical. You want to keep your load low and centered. I use down rather than synthetics, and I use compression sacks to keep things dense and small. I rely on Watershed bags (everything else is splash bag, not a drybag...) and have never been let down, even after leaving a boat wrapped for an hour.

You don't need a chair or table, the IK is a great couch/chair/cot.

Alcohol stoves are great for 1 person kitchens.

The Eco-safe boom box or the old school climbers pvc poop tube are great groovers (use wag bags).

For a firepan, I like 2" or 4" deep full size stainless steam table pans. cheap, light, bomber.

Get a good light tarp. Campmor sells nice silnylon ones that are uber light. 10x12 goes a long way to protect a small kitchen.

Pick tents, if use them, that pack tiny. I like the REI Qtr Dome UL, frequently seen for cheap on their outlet site.

what else? the k-60 is a great pump for hike in/fly in runs. top off pump that can inflate a boat, but will fit in a watershed ocoee.

I recommend a gravity water filter shared by the group.

Always carry a spare paddle for every 2 people. a robust repair kit. And a pin kit, because you might unpin an empty IK but a fully loaded gear boat often requires a z-drag.

Do a shakedown on a local run. Our first trip, some folks were sceptical. So we picked a day run with an intermediary bridge. We camped just below the bridge and that way there was a way out if a sleeping bag got wet or someone couldn't handle the gear boat or whatever.

Around here in the winter, IK self support trips require each boat to haul a bag of firewood. that can be a packing challenge ...

Do it and don't look back. You'll never find a better tool for having a wide range of rivers and flows. It lets you pick the weather, the crowd factor, or whatever and dial it in without compromising the ability to run real rapids.

One of my favorite trips to do is the SF Salmon around 2.2' -- NO ONE is there because it is "too low" for the gnar V boaters. Fine with me, every beach is unclaimed. Took a week once in late july, saw zero people for a week on the SFS. Pretty magical.

Share some trip reports when you go!
 

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I would like to see some pictures or footage of you running a fully loaded ducky in IV+ Slickhorn. I know rapid ratings are subjective, but IV+ is full on, and I call bullshit.
 

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riverlog

Lots of evidence all over my blog, though I'm quite a few TR's behind.

Most folks, regardless of their personal boat of choice see IKs as "duckies" or "tuber" style boats, fit only for commercial custies or a timid girlfriend.

Well, the inflatable kayak is a legit boat. I've take mine down the Little White Salmon. Yeah, I swam Spirit. But I stuck Wishbone, S-Turn, and the rest of the drops. Not in a gear boat though I've often thought Farmlands to the Columbia would be a dope 2 night trip on the White Salmon, and yes, I believe I could paddle the Truss in a gear boat.

The Green Wall on the Illinois has never looked "only IV" to me, and I've paddled it self support in my IK several times. Fall Creek, Surprise, Devil Creek on the SF Salmon are pretty legit rapids that are every bit of IV+ at 2'. 1500+ CFS in Five Mile on the Bruneau? How do you rate that?

Maybe before you call someone out, you should revisit your preconceptions. But I'll take your request for proof as a chance to share some eye candy:

Here's Nick nailing a thin line through Devil's Creek on the SF Salmon:


Here's a self-support IK eddied out in Nightmare, the unscoutable unportageble class V sieve-laced crux of the Grand Canyon Elwha


Here's a little class V gear boat swimming from the Elwha:


Here's me on the Chetco at the top of the IV+ gorge (a classic shot by Shap -- thanks man!):



Here's me dropping S-Turn on the Lil White.


Here's Mark Yauney dropping BUD on McCoy creek. Not a gear boat, but not a class II one move ledge either.



Last but by no means least, here's Dr David dropping 45-foot Lower Lewis Falls. Also not in a gear boat.

 

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Also, Shapattack dropped the big rapids on the upper Owyhee at something like 17,000 cfs cat-surfing levels.

Just because you don't think an IK can run hard water does not mean no one is doing it. because they are, and frankly, many are doing it well.
 

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Sweet pictures Slickhorn, definitely pushing the limits of what I have seen done with inflatable kayaks. However, most of those pictures appeared to not be loaded down for a multi-day trip. Every one of those moves looked difficult enough with the chosen craft, let alone with the loads most people take on multi-day's.... again, cool pics. Thanks for sharing.

I have ran solid IV with IK'ers plenty of times..... like Numbers/Gorge at respectable flows as well as seeing Cayo2 drop some falls on Fossil Creek in an inflatable, but the OP asked about double ducks for multi-days......
 

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All of those photos are in gear boats save the last 3 shots of waterfalls. All of them.

To keep this post on-topic, I will say tandem IKs are great for class II-III and are gear hauling machines, but don't get into technical consequential whitewater in them unless you an run it in the tandem without gear. My dad loves his tandem tomcat and takes it on the GC San Rafael, Gila Wilderness Run and stuff like that up to III-. Myself, I don't need the gear capacity and like a more nimble boat, but tandems work just fine.

Here's Bill in the entrance to Devil's Creek. All the boats are packed like this in the shots above, again, except the 3 waterfall frames.



Here's a shot from Deep Creek, a trib of the Virgin above Zion.
 

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Right on. I didn't mean anything personal, you definitely boat harder stuff than 9 out of 10 IK'ers I know. All awesome photos, so if it took me calling you out to get them posted.... I don't feel bad about it ;)
 

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Glad you dig 'em.

I don't mind being called out personally, but I do get sick of IK's being called out.

They are the ideal tool for multiday boating. A kayak can handle the rapids, but the gear is tough. A raft can handle the gear but needs more flow/less gradient.

The IK is the perfect tool to extend the season because it widens the flow window. Sure, take a raft if you are going to the grand canyon, or a creek boat for the Clark's Fork. For more ordinary stuff, the IK opens new doors to where you can camp, what you can run, how much water you need to do it, etc.

There's a huge difference between an Illinois trip in February where it is 30 degrees, snowing, and dark at 4pm as opposed to may trip where it's sunny and 70 degrees and light til 8. What makes a may trip possible? Being able to take something smaller that opens the door at lower flows.
 

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Nice pics. I'm a fan of anything that gives us access. And I've got friends that have been running hard class 5 in Thrillseekers (high performance ducks) back east for years. But the important question for me is how was Deep Creek accessed? :)
 

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To the OP, you've probably discerned by now that an IK is fine to run loaded, the size and difficulty of water is dependent on you. Heck, 2 years ago on a late august mf salmon trip we saw a group of canoes and IK's, and the IK's had ridiculous loads. I think they were tandems, and had coolers that looked much too large. Get an IK and go have fun!
 

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Shapp
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I would like to see some pictures or footage of you running a fully loaded ducky in IV+ Slickhorn. I know rapid ratings are subjective, but IV+ is full on, and I call bullshit.
This statement proves your true ignorance, lack of imagination, and probably your impotence :)

Slickhorn is indeed a badass IK master. Check out his blog, riverlog and eat your shorts :)
 
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