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What are your thoughts? I approached the main rapid this time of year on the Snake River near Jackson Hole, “Lunch Counter”, where a kayaker was playing in the main wave expecting him to move; this is a place where kayakers and surfers play for a bit, duck out and paddle back up. They can hit this particular rapid again and again all day. Well, he didn’t yield. I plowed right into him sideways and my oar was over him and the kayak. We both had pissed off looks on our faces. I couldn’t row, and could have really creamed him. I’m still pissed. I could have missed the 1st main wave and avoided this, but never have I seen a surfer or kayaker fail to yield. Rafters get one shot at the rapid and it’s why most come. The kayaker could hit it all day. I’m just venting and curious about other’s thoughts.
 

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I would be pissed off too, there was only one, the fun does not start till you have 3 to 4 lined up just right. I have run trips with kayakers in tow, they usually run safety and know they are more maneuverable and faster than a raft. If they don't see you, give them a shout or give them a good shot of water over their bow with you oar.
 

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I think you should have not been pissed off. Just run over him with glee. I would try to hit him right under the nose. With the rise of the nose it will turn him sideways and kind of roll him right over gently. Or so. If you are lucky you will hear him trying to set up for a roll right when he gets under your feet. Hitting him sideways just makes the kayaker kind of stuck in that gray area of getting run over, but not getting run over.

It's just a kayaker.

(and I have been the one getting run over too)
 

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I run that rapid regularly. Kayaks and surfers yield or they get run over. That train IS the reason for the run and they well know it. If they want to sneak under my river left oar I’m down with that. Never had one not yield for the very reasons you stated. They will get back on the wave. It’ll be cold tomorrow. The river traffic will,be slower. He can play then.
 

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I haven't run that river...but I had a run in with a kayaker on the Middle Fork Salmon that had a bunch of attitude when our group came around a corner and him and literally 40 of his buddies were running a rapid the last day. They didn't post anyone upstream warning us and there was nowhere we could have fit one raft...not to mention the 6 or 7 that were on our trip. The dude paddled over to me and started this whole passive agressive rant about "how would we feel if they busted through our group" and stuff. I mostly just looked at him blankly but basically said "rafts have the right of way...we can't just stop in the middle of a rapid and you guys can..." and he paddled off before I could finish my sentence.

I don't think a lot kayakers and other small craft have an understanding on what it takes to maneuver a raft and how you can't really make last minute ferries or catch micro eddies or many of the things that a kayak has no problem with. I've been a kayaker since I was 12...but I've done a lot of rafting in that time too and always give them the space (and politely ask for it from kayakers too). Most know that already...but not all of them.

I feel like river surfers aren't as knowledgeable either and are maybe prone to more attitude. I just say chaulk it up to "players gonna hate". I wouldn't get to pissed and wouldn't worry too much about pissing them off. Pretty common knowledge that upstream traffic gets right of way.
 

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I think you should have not been pissed off. Just run over him with glee. I would try to hit him right under the nose. With the rise of the nose it will turn him sideways and kind of roll him right over gently. Or so. If you are lucky you will hear him trying to set up for a roll right when he gets under your feet. Hitting him sideways just makes the kayaker kind of stuck in that gray area of getting run over, but not getting run over.

It's just a kayaker.

(and I have been the one getting run over too)
I think we need to go boatin' together. 🙂
 

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I’ve been kayaking longer than rafting. If I’m in a raft, I really don’t worry about a collision with a kayaker. The other way around is a different story. Can’t wait for common sense to become common again.

In your situation, little hurty McFeelins kayaker wouldn’t have ruined my day one bit.
 

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I'll usually be glad to do a few back strokes to make sure they see me, or even eddy out above, if possible, if it's a super wave they can only catch on the fly. But when it's a wave with eddy service and you're coming though on a raft, I don't know what they expect you to do. If they don't get out of the way, they're asking to be run over.
 

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Mow, mow, mow your boat gently down the stream. It's a wonder common sense doesn't prevail... especially with the surfers and supers. They know the etiquette; if not they learn fast.
 

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Downstream travel has right of way on a river. For safety and common sense.

A vast majority of my river miles are in a kayak. But I also have significant miles on oars-- that's where my perspective comes from.

A few guides on Browns Canyon section of the Arkansas river knew me as "that kayaker dude who plays chicken" bc i would wait until the last minute to yield a feature to a commercial paddle raft. I'm sure a few guides got an extra tip for the entertainment we provided-- we all had fun and a few laughs.

No grumps on the river!
 

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The kayaker had a right to stay where he was considering that you had a river wide worth of options. He would have been courteous to yield you the line. Having knowledge that he failed to yield, he'd be carrying his dry bag on the back of his kayak and eating freeze dried next Grand trip.

Talk of deliberately putting another person's health or life at risk is irresponsible and falls into the same category as being self righteous and ignoring reasonable scientific guidance during a pandemic, having fires and fireworks during a fire ban or shooting guns within a half mile no discharge set back of the river. I can think of more broader ranging examples of ill founded personal "liberties" but I'll leave my self righteousness at that, for now.
 

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T but I'll leave my self righteousness at that, for now.
Too late, it all already got out and you spilled some on me.....

Talk of deliberately putting another person's health or life at risk is irresponsible and falls into the same category as being self righteous and ignoring reasonable scientific guidance during a pandemic, having fires and fireworks during a fire ban or shooting guns within a half mile no discharge set back of the river.
Nice jump.....and lapse in logic. If the kayaker chooses not to yield the line thru a feature, or cuts it too close that is their fault. Not mine. If I try to slide off the line at the last minute and flip my raft (if you dont't know the rapid, it could flip you), that endangers my peeps. Now who is zooming who? Maybe you don't know the rapid, but you want to be square and in the middle of the flow, not fucking around trying to miss kayakers.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cf4bZ9GSEnw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VSRTmXMl2ew

It seems like the pandemic has you all on edge. One kayaker 'life' is not worth several rafters. Take a deep breath. Your move.
 

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I cut my teeth in my first squirt boat playing for hours a day, plus/minus 1980, on occasional weekends, when I live in Casper. It is where I took my kayak class from Casper College on their "graduation" outing. I know the rapid, the river, pretty damn well. Perhaps it has trended toward arrogance of superior rights of commercials. Very likely, but don't know.

It is not always true that a kayaker on wave is totally aware of oncoming traffic especially if he is in the trough surfing in a long wave train. If he is novice he is dialed into pure adrenaline on that wave. And, the upstream waves such as at Lunch Counter can obscure your awareness. Upstream traffic has got to make certain communications of intent and there is a lot of flats above the wave train we are discussing to assure proper communication.

Regarding jumps of logic, don't take it personal. It was inclusive of logic by other respondents that "their rights are superior to everyone else's".
 

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The kayaker had a right to stay where he was considering that you had a river wide worth of options.
It is not always true that a kayaker on wave is totally aware of oncoming traffic especially if he is in the trough surfing in a long wave train. If he is novice he is dialed into pure adrenaline on that wave. And, the upstream waves such as at Lunch Counter can obscure your awareness. Upstream traffic has got to make certain communications of intent and there is a lot of flats above the wave train we are discussing to assure proper communication.
You are wrong. Downstream travel has the right of way on a river, end of story. This is not debatable.
 

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If he wasnt looking upstream he should have at least heard his buddys in the eddie hollering RAFT at him
 

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Regarding jumps of logic, don't take it personal.
Now don't go getting yourself all worked up, but to say running over a kayaker is equal to trying to spread a pandemic, shooting at your neighbors camps in the canyon, trying to start fires and God knows what else is pretty much Masters Level Logic Jumping. Working on your PHD?

Is your chill button broken? Maybe your sense of humor is gone with the corona.....
 

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Perspectives from "West by God" and "Resistant Redneck"?

What you are saying is that olympians, cripples or wheelchairs in a crosswalk must yield!?!?

Soooo, by logic, if you are in a raft on the Main Salmon you are fair game to be flattened by an upstream or downstream jet boat?
 

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Carvedog please chill.

Death is not funny. Potential injury is not humorous.

Their is a considerate and understanding highroad. Please take it.
 
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