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I paddled the Wavesport Diesel down the Lower Meadow out here in WV. I am very impressed with this boat. Same comfortable outfitting as usual. It is definitely the SUV of kayaks. I think every ability level will like this boat. I am definitely going to use it for creeking The boat itself comes in 2 sizes. I paddled the smaller version today but will be buying the bigger version. For my weight the smaller boat was a little small but still handled very well. It is definitely very user friendly. It has great hull speed and turns on a dime. I think the smaller version will be great for the lighter paddlers. Although I never felt it was to small for my weight (180) I think for the river runners out there that want to stay upright will love this boat. It seems narrow but has great secondary stability. With the faster hull it is easier to keep your speed and punch holes. For the creekers the small version (65 gallons)will be great for woman and light weight guys. I think the bigger version(75 gallons) will be perfect for the bigger paddlers. Definitely demo this boat if you are in the market for a river runner/creek boat.

I have paddled most river runner/creek boats out there and so far I like this boat the most. It compares a lot to the Pyranha H3. I paddled the H3 a bunch last year and I immediately liked the Diesel better. It seemed to be a little more forgiving...which for today made me a lot more at ease.

For those who haven't paddled in WV the Lower Meadow is definitely a scary run. The drops aren't huge but the consequences are VERY SCARY!! As my group of paddlers found out today. With drops called Coming Home Sweet Jesus, Sieve City, Double Undercut I figured I was in for a big day...and that is what I got. I was paddling with guys who know this run very well...THANK GOD!! Super fun rapids but every single one of them had numerous undercuts and sieves. As my buddy Roger found out. He got pinned in one of them very badly. He was luckily able to keep his head barely above water but was slipping down very fast. Jed got a throw rope to him quickly and was able to yank him out but not the boat. If Jed would not have gotten the rope to Roger so quickly he would have definitely gone under. After Roger was safely on shore we set up a 5 to 1 Z drag and was able to move it slightly but then it shifted and pinned even worse. We spent a total of at least 2 hours trying to yank it out but had no such luck. Some of the more experienced paddlers said that this was one of the worst pins they had ever witnessed. The scary thing is this was just a simple class 3 move. If you were to look at this rapid it would never had occurred that you might get pinned. This rapid doesn't even have a name. (It does now...we decided to name it Dead Gus) In honor of the Liquid Logic Gus which will stay there until the Meadow dries up. Scary stuff seeing something like this. Thank God we got Roger out safely. My lesson learned today is not to take any rapid as nothing.. big or small. And if you are out here in WV and want to tackle the Lower Meadow make sure to go with somebody who knows the river.

Later
Mark Olson
 
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