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I'm just curious if there is anything you can do that makes a difference (other than a seatbelt which is kinda dangerous for obvious reasons) to reduce the likelihood of you getting g separated from your raft of cataraft in the event of a flip? From frame design to longer tag lines to ? Any practices?
 

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I'm just curious if there is anything you can do that makes a difference (other than a seatbelt which is kinda dangerous for obvious reasons) to reduce the likelihood of you getting g separated from your raft of cataraft in the event of a flip? From frame design to longer tag lines to ? Any practices?
Pin n clips. Grab frame.
 

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Jared
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I was an inflatable kayaker for years and years. It was a process learning to hold on to my paddle and my boat. I didn't always do it right. Sometimes I'd self rescue so fast others in my group wouldn't even see my mistake. I flipped my raft a couple months ago in some bigger water, all 5 of us hung on to the raft. Some were rookies, some were swim hardened basterds like me.
Treat ropes and straps with care. The can kill us as easily as help us in rescue situations. You don't need to hang anything off your boat, just practice flipping it both directions, and getting on it when it has been flipped either way. Most people struggle with re-entering big tube boats like cats and rafts. I'm a tall fat guy in good shape relative to being a fat guy, and I can just barely get into a 14' raft without any help from a ladder or frame to grab. It can be difficult to get on an upside down raft as well. It is a drill my club practices at our river safety training class every year.
 

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I've seen one of my older buddies use a fairly long strap to hang off of the back of his raft/ducky. It floats essentially. Can't swim or self rescue as quickly these days, but I've seen him flip in his duck and the boat not get away from him. You may be able to try that on your cataraft.
 

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Pack extra beer and beef jerky to chum the kayakers:). Let them in your boat when they are learning and swim. Down the road they might return the favor. They really arent that bad for the most part and can really save your ass:) It really is true that they will drink your beer and hit on your girl though.
 

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I've seen one of my older buddies use a fairly long strap to hang off of the back of his raft/ducky. It floats essentially. Can't swim or self rescue as quickly these days, but I've seen him flip in his duck and the boat not get away from him. You may be able to try that on your cataraft.
Not a fan of this concept. Entrapment, tangling in a paddle while under way etc.
 

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Way I see it, flipping is part of the sport.

If you're upping your game and progressing, then you'll likely be chasing bigger, tougher whitewater. It is then that you need to accept the consequences and definitions of the classification system. Flipping will happen, and a lot of time it fucking sucks! Sometimes, you lose the boat, and in my opinion, that's like the ultimate guide fail - but it does happen. Swimming a Class 4 or 5 rapid can be so turbulent that it's no surprise that paddlers can get separated from their craft, and there becomes a point sometimes where all that ends up mattering is getting out of the river. Forget the gear. That can be recovered later.

So to answer your question, I'd say the answer to your question is to swim. Usually this means swimming back to the very boat you fell out of. Perimeter lines can be helpful and pretty safe when utilized correctly, and it does take practice and for some a specific technique to get back into the boat. If you're unsure how the flip/reflip routine is going to go down, practice the entire process in a pool/lake, or even better, in a safe and deep portion of river with moving current. Forget tools and tricks beyond this, flipping happens and it is necessary to be prepared to properly deal with the situation.
 

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I'm right 50% of the time
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Not a fan of this concept. Entrapment, tangling in a paddle while under way etc.
Tag lines are frequently used.

see:
how long for bow/stern cat taglines

Cataraft Boat retrevial

I personally use a 6ft on the back and a 4ft on the front when running class IV (up) paddle boat. I use polypro loop staps (webbing sewn with a loop on one end, no buckle) and attach to front and back d rings. I have never had a problem with them as they are short enough not to cause an attachment hazard. They are great to hold onto when a boat is in an eddy and I have used them to retireve the boat going down river. I don't use any on the sides.
 

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Tag lines are frequently used.

see:
how long for bow/stern cat taglines

Cataraft Boat retrevial

I personally use a 6ft on the back and a 4ft on the front when running class IV (up) paddle boat. I use polypro loop staps (webbing sewn with a loop on one end, no buckle) and attach to front and back d rings. I have never had a problem with them as they are short enough not to cause an attachment hazard. They are great to hold onto when a boat is in an eddy and I have used them to retireve the boat going down river. I don't use any on the sides.
I understand. The post I was responding too referred to a "fairly long line". And I still think loose lines are a potential hazard. I get their value, especially as short as you are using, but... Would also add, especially in this context, everyone on the trip should have a knife on their vest.
 

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Side rails for seat.

Aside from good toe-bars, another frame modification that can keep you in your seat rather than dump-trucked out the side is to add small "3/4" EMT conduit bends that rise about three inches above the seat on either side. These side rails can be welded or made with 1/2 pipe sleeves and clamped on with hose-clamps. They also work great to hold the oars or even as "Oh Sh" handles. Pictured is a 10" Jacks Baby-cat with home-built frame, awesome play boat! Also, plant your oars and hang on tight to stay in the seat longer.

IMGP0895.JPG
 

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I have thought that a T-bar arrangement over your thighs could allow you to stay in your (tractor) seat when you want- and eject when you need to. Wooden dowel suspended by a piece of webbing. Thought about starting a thread to discuss and get abused over......

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Good toe bar lock and keep pushing.....

Grab Frame.

Tag Lines.

In that order for cats.

For rafts I try to fall in the boat rather than out and have a good perimeter line if I'm swimming. The good foot/toe lock works well in rafts as well.

I don't like high back seats, but, some say they help give something to push toward to lock the rower in.
 

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I use grip tape all over my cat frame- in my foot brace areas and other areas I may need to put a foot. I also use 5.10 river boots that give good support and have super sticky soles-worth the investment.
 

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Tag lines work great for cats, I use 15' straps for my tag lines. Also great for the kids when they want to float around in the calm stretches, they just snag a line and pull themselves over to the cat.
 

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I always tell people the front crossbar is your best friend when things get weird. And if you start challenging yourself things will certainly get weird a time or two. Someone once told me that if something looks big and you can't avoid it, start digging into it with the oars full speed ahead. If the feature is in fact big you may find yourself pushing nearly vertically into the air. At the last second, before things get too weird, grab your front crossbar. If and when the boat flips over backwards you should be dangling under your cockpit. Down is now up and hopefully youre in a good position to rise up through the cockpit and start breathing, as soon as you can of course. Whatever you do don't let go as the current may either be dragging you downstream or pulling you toward the bottom. As soon as you surface through your frame begin scouting for reflip options. These techniques have saved me from swims multiple times. I have almost broken my leg when getting whipped up underneath the boat but forearm and shin guards help a lot and are recommended when running big water.
 

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addict
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1. Move to the Futaleufu

2. Learn to row again (for real)

3. Get back in/on the boat when you fall out


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I refer to the toprail in a cataraft frame cockpit as the square. My frame has internal rails that brace the oar towers. These rails are up off the tubes about two inches which make for nice grab points. When I built my frame I made sure I could not get a whole hand and therefore a wrist in between these rails and the tubes. I did the same for my scout rails. I think I went about 1.5 inches inside width. Anyhow I try to keep my center of gravity balanced and low regardless of what the boat does. If the boat feels off balance I let go of the oars and grab the highest part of the square. If the boat flips I'm ready to pull myself up through the square. If I'm in the seat and I'm right up on something that looks so big that I doubt I'll make it through I'll drop the oars and actually leave the seat. I'll put one of my shoulders down on the scout rail and lower my center of gravity. I've had the boat surf like this in big waves and not flip. When I brace I'm actually practicing for a big recirc flip, like a feature that would whip the boat around enough to where a simple frame grab wouldnt hold. When I'm laying down on the scout rail I brace my top foot on the opposite internal frame rail and the bottom foot onto the tube, one hand on the footbar and one on the toe bar. Always be ready to grab, brace, and try to let the boat flip over the top of you. If youre in the right position, sometimes the boat can flip over you without your head even going under the water. A good high back seat to brace into is a must. Make sure youre pressed into the seat just before your knees lock.
 
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