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On his facebook page he's looking awfully retired, and he does have a young one to think about. I'm sure he'll still paddle, but my read says that he's done with the super extreme made for video stuff.

C&K's article

 

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New kid

That changes anyone who has common senses appetite for risk. He seems to have a good life. He indicates he'll still be paddling with an effort to hit a 50' surf and run the White at over 5'. Certainly mixed messages, but I admire him for making what seems to be a well thought out decission. There are lots of great paddelers out there that have not acheived the press this guy did. He certainly seems to have understood the pro game better than most.
 

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Since He's retiring I'll take a couple wave skis behind him off his hands.:) I'm not sure if that's the "biggest wave" ever by a paddle surfer but impressive none the less. We have a surf spot around here called Mavericks and a lot of crazy paddle surfers around here. Dont know if they're just rumors though.....
Wave Ski surfing is huge down under and other places and it's been around since the 60's. Thanks for the video, that is scary size!


On his facebook page he's looking awfully retired, and he does have a young one to think about. I'm sure he'll still paddle, but my read says that he's done with the super extreme made for video stuff.

C&K's article

 

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Good looking steel grey metallic M coupe he's got. I think they only made the S54 in that color. The S54 is one of the best BMW's ever made.
 

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I have to say I respect the guy for a lot of reasons. Everyone has their reasons for making choices and if he has achieved what he wants to, it is good he recognizes it. I have had a couple encounters with him over the years and each was good. You aren't going to be sponsored by Red Bull and be introverted. I watched him laugh at Boomer getting beat down in a hole above a 25 foot drop (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H5cO78XWFIU). At the time I was surprised because I was worried for Boomer, but these guys are used to that kind of thing (if you haven't seen Frontier yet, check it out). Last year he took me down the Little White. Just me and him because flows were too high to interest my friends. Try finding other random people to take you down that run who don't know you. Most won't. You never quite realize how big of a pussy you are until someone is paddling upstream and downstream to get a work out while you are paddling as fast as you can to keep up. He is just in amazing shape. One of his biggest feats is he managed to actually earn some money kayaking. Most people are happy to get free gear and some gas money.
 

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He is just retiring from competition. It just doesn't interest him the way it used to- and priorities change as you get older, and have others to consider when making choices. You'll still see Tao paddling, biking, surfing and whatever else he feels like doing around the gorge- thats what he does- but in terms of trying to set records and win races, he just doesn't care about that stuff anymore - he's been doing it for 15 years competitively. Good on you Tao! Between you and the Teton Gravity crew making those sick videos back in the day- a lot of us may not have started kayaking if those weren't around! As for me, well, i'll still be paying you rent, so, happy retirement present buddy!
 

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I was always impressed by his super positive attitude, and that, (afaik) he never got hurt doing all the serious drops, runs, and big wave surfing he's done. It seems almost inevitable for extreme athletes to get seriously hurt at one point or another. Pushing the limits and not getting hurt may be his greatest accomplishment.
 

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I tink EJ or Coran, etc.... may see it differently. Certainly a stud, but most professional ever is a pretty broad brush.

Certainly don't want to take away from a retirement anouncement however.
 

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EJ makes his money from selling boats. I don't know much about Coran. Tao makes his money from selling his kayaking. Feel free to disagree.
 

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Tao is only retiring from competing because he's won almost every race and knows he's too old to win the one that got away - the Green!

I don't agree with his kayaking philosophy, but he's always been friendly and approachable the few times I've met him. And no one can deny his mad skills in a boat and sac of rocks to match...
Joe
 

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Tao is a true champion and competitor in all aspects. He has supported and grown our sport in ways we can only imagine. I would say that I personally owe him for the amazing contributions he's made and the support he has given to individuals and groups alike. An example is his willingness to give to the Lyons Outdoor Games year after year to help us succeed. Guys like this only come around so often. Thank you Tao. Way to go out on top!!

Joe, I like how you try to drag him back in. Very clever ;)
 
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