The Kayaking Journey: Take 9 – Finally Hit the H2O

July 20, 2014

Some time back I was finally able to have the opportunity to go down whitewater in a kayak. It was such an amazing experience!! I got to go down the Tuckasegee River in Bryson City, NC. A good class two training ground for beginner kayakers. Granted, I swam twice through the trip but, it was a really good learning experience. I worked on ferrying, eddy catching, and reading water from that low of an angle. I am not gonna lie, I really missed my raft when i was going through these class 2 rapids. I enjoy being able to prepare for what is ahead of me and I get like I couldn’t do that as well while I was in a kayak.
It was funny though, how humbled I was. These class 2 rapids scared the living crap out of me! I felt like I was the most unstable thing on the river. Being so much closer to everything can make you so much more vulnerable. Plus, I thought with my past whitewater experience would give me a slight advantage. How wrong I was. Ferrying is something I can do really well in a raft. So I thought that I would be able to do it in a kayak because, I thought I understood the angle. I was dead wrong. I about flipped trying to do my first ferry. Talk about humiliating. Also, did I mention this is one of my first dates with my current boyfriend? Oh yeah, the pressure was seriously on.
Not only did I almost flip over doing a ferry but, I had one of the most epic failures of a seal launch. It happened after not even being on the river for five minutes. We had paddled down to the first rapid called Stitches and it is a class three rapid. I decided against going down it because I didn’t have enough confidence in my ability. So i walk around and get ready for a seal launch. Needless to say, it ended very badly. I window shaded right into the current and missed a T-Rescue because I thought my boyfriend’s boat was a rock. I was less than happy of how the trip was beginning. Everything went okay after that until I eddy flipped after successfully going through a class two and again I missed the T-Rescue.
I feel like I really need to get my roll down because, I am less than fond of swimming and I seem to be missing way too many T-Rescues for my liking. I also wish I had more time to practice kayaking because i have been out since this past Tuskasegee trip. Its kinda disheartening.
Well wish me luck!

Peace Ya’ll.

Summer Struggles

June 14, 2014

It has been quite a while since I have posted but for many good reasons. One, my computer broke, two I have just been so completely busy having a freaking awesome summer!!
The crew is rocking the river and I really couldn’t ask for more. They are all learning the ropes super quick. Grant there are always a few hiccups along the way but my first year was the same.
Sadly though, I have had to said goodbye to my other senior guide. He had to go home because he is going to be a father!! A perfectly valid reason to go home from the river if you ask me. I am just sad because he was a good friend to talk to and he always had a boat load of knowledge on how to make the most of everything on the river.
When I found out he was leaving, was the day that I got back after having to take a week off from a combination of a bladder infection, kidney infection, and pulled back muscle. Of course we all went on one last trip with him and it was probably one of the best fun runs I have ever had. I honestly almost cried as we were driving to the put in.
Since, he has left another senior guide has also announced the he is leaving as well. Which means I am going to be the only senior guide other than my manager. I don’t know why but I find this daunting. I guess it just means I need to step up my game and show that I am confident on this river. While also learning more from my manager and other more experienced guides. Oh the balance I must have. Ugh, I am probably worrying about this too much. Hopefully this summer will even out soon!

Peace ya’ll. 🙂

Good News

March 17, 2014

Today started out as a pretty crappy day. It was snaining (snow mixed with rain) and about 20 degrees colder than it had been yesterday. I had barely gotten any sleep from some bad pain and it just wasn’t looking bright. However, all that negativity went out the window when I got an email from my old manager from Rolling Thunder, Vincent. I have been invited to come back and work this summer!!!!! EEEEKKKKKKKK
I’m so flipping relieved and excited! Now I don’t have to worry about this summer and I can start planning on leaving in a month. I have to get all my stuff together and packed away since I’ll be transferring to App in the fall.
I can’t wait for it to get warm and for summer to finally start. Which will be much earlier for me this year than the last. Which is fine by me. Now I just need to get good enough at kayaking so on my free time I can kayak the Nanny. 😀

Till next time, peace ya’ll!

Chacos are a Guide’s Choice in Footwear

Chacos are the ultimate outdoors sandal.  Not only are they comfortable but also durable. I personally wear mine all year long (yes in in the winter) and I’m tough on them. But some how my first pair managed to last me three years!  Of course they are also the go to shoe for guides. Check out this video Chaco posted on their Facebook page about raft guides on the Chattooga river: