Mountain Buzz banner

1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
Westernmost
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Good Morning Folks!

To start, I'm an absolute newbie to paddling but after years of dreaming my wife finally finally let me pull the trigger; I decided on a Sea Eagle 420x Explorer package (iK, 2 paddles, 2 seats, pump, repair kit) as it met my budget and has a lot of room for my wife and gear when we finally get to a point to do some longer trips.

Well after multiple test trips to the local reservoir, yesterday was my official "maiden voyage" on a river; It was a quick 6 mile float through GJ on the Colorado with my brother, with occasional I/II runs. It was a great time and I can't wait to get back on the water.

However, there were a couple of times where on relatively flat water, the stern of the boat would suddenly get pushed down enough to take on water: Not a lot of water but enough to get my butt wet!

Again, I am an absolute newbie and I'm trying to learn as much as I can, and I would love to hear input so I can better myself on the water; Here is what I think is happening: my iK is 14 feet long with an ~3 foot width. This happened twice yesterday, and both times I think my brother (on the bow end) put the nose into a slower section of the current, while the stern was in faster current. This resulted in faster water suddenly hitting the rear causing the (relatively) long and skinny iK to be pushed down in the rear and twist enough to allow for water to start entering the boat. Both times that this happened was pretty unexpected but manageable, though not to say I was startled. I'm more concerned that if we weren't in such a flat section of water when this happened, it may have been likely I would have gone for a swim!

Any thoughts? Recommendations? Am I reading the situation correctly, and any advice on what I could be doing to avoid similar situations?

Cheers
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
49 Posts
All IK's you should expect a wet but. That said some boats recover quickly while others don't and swamp easily. Keep going out and learn to read the water. Swimming is inevitable.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,942 Posts
The Eddie line between the current and the slack water off to the side of the current creates a suction effect that will suck a boat down like you describe. Some call it a mystery move or a submarine effect. There are kayaks that are designed to play in this type of current. I forget what they are called.

On big rivers like the Green and Colorado, I have had the tube on a gear boat get sucked under and start filling the boat with water. It can scare the hell out of you if you don't expect it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
47 Posts
Without seeing a video of the incident it's really difficult to say exactly what happened. The ideas put forth by previous posters certainly seem plausible.

But I mentally stumbled over your use of the word "twisted." Is it possible that your boat was significantly underinflated? As a novice you may not be used to the common issue of tempering, e.g. you might inflate your boat correctly on land, put it in the water, then immediately paddle away. But several minutes later the cooler water temp causes the air in the chambers to contract, resulting in an underinflated boat when on the water. It happened a couple of times to me early in my paddling career. The solution is to inflate your boat, put it in the water while you make your final preparations, then check the pressure again after several minutes (or more) of cooling (and be sure to securely tie off your boat when it's cooling in the water!). You might need to do that more than once. And caution: the opposite is true when you take the boat out of the water and set it in the hot sun. You might need to vent a bit of air to avoid over inflation caused by the sun heating the air in the chambers.

Again, I have no idea what caused your twisting but you might watch the inflation pressure in and out of the water. A pressure gauge is worth the money IMO. Enjoy your boat, be safe!

-Tom
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
IK

I bought an IK this year (NRS older model) and going through a few rapids on the San Juan quickly realized that it fills like a lake and doesn't drain well. When I got home I modified the floor or my IK, under the inflatable floor, with a few half pieces of a pool noddle. The floor sits a bit higher and allows for the water to drain better.

Also, IKs are meant to be fun and wet.
 

·
Westernmost
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Without seeing a video of the incident it's really difficult to say exactly what happened. The ideas put forth by previous posters certainly seem plausible.

But I mentally stumbled over your use of the word "twisted." Is it possible that your boat was significantly underinflated? As a novice you may not be used to the common issue of tempering, e.g. you might inflate your boat correctly on land, put it in the water, then immediately paddle away. But several minutes later the cooler water temp causes the air in the chambers to contract, resulting in an underinflated boat when on the water. It happened a couple of times to me early in my paddling career. The solution is to inflate your boat, put it in the water while you make your final preparations, then check the pressure again after several minutes (or more) of cooling (and be sure to securely tie off your boat when it's cooling in the water!). You might need to do that more than once. And caution: the opposite is true when you take the boat out of the water and set it in the hot sun. You might need to vent a bit of air to avoid over inflation caused by the sun heating the air in the chambers.

Again, I have no idea what caused your twisting but you might watch the inflation pressure in and out of the water. A pressure gauge is worth the money IMO. Enjoy your boat, be safe!

-Tom
Yeah the "twisting" was meant as a visual as the upriver stern portion of my iK was what was getting pushed under. After talking to some locals I determined was I was encountering was current differential; I was not entering eddies at either the correct angle, speed or proper lean on my boat.

Now I know!

Thanks everyone for the feed back
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
Top