Woah, has this year ever been epic. It seems like it has been forever since Mikkel St. Jean Duncan and I set off on our road trip to the Little White Salmon race and the North Fork Championships. Since then life has been a blur of good times working hard and enjoying life.
Arriving at the Little White Mikkel and I got right in the mix. The little white has so many features and drops to remember that after 4 laps in two days we were still trying to get it all dialled in.
On race day there was this great vibe in the air, everyone was super stoked and ready to rumble. Mikkel and I had an alright race and placed 17, a little bit of an unfortunate finish for the Canadians, but hey what can you do. All in all this was an awesome race, Thanks to Capo Retting for setting it up and making it all happen.
Next it was off to the north fork of the Payette for more awesome white water and good times. We were there a week in advance to get ready and by the time that race day came along we were feeling pretty good. I was racing in the expert division on the lower five miles, it was a super tight race I ended up having a disappointing race finishing 25, but it was alright because I was off the hook for racing the next day on Jacob’s ladder. This was intense to say the least, mad props to everyone who raced and the safety boaters/ Volunteers, and James Byrd who made it all happen.
During the after party there was word of California being in so we hooked up with the Kiwi crew and headed out. About an hour into our drive we decided that it was not worth the risk of getting skunked and decided to head back to Canada. This decision led us to some good times, many drops and some runs at ridiculously high water levels. Most notably was the first descent of ram falls near Nordegg Alberta. This monster has been looked at by many paddlers but the water level has never been correct. When we showed up it was looking perfect. Dylan Thomson, Ryan Lucas and I were all keen and after scouting it for a second time the next morning we were ready to get in our boats and head to the lip. Upon arriving everyone went really silent. It was a lot bigger than we expected and the lip was a lot sharper than we had thought. Dylan went from being, keen to “I’m out”, to “I’m back in lets fire it up!” with in all of about two minutes. A game of rock paper scissors followed and I was heading up to my boat to get the first descent of a 100 foot waterfall. Once I got to a certain point I knew there was no turning back and I recall saying to myself “there is no turning back now better enjoy it.” The free fall was awesome,the impact was super soft. I had a good line and came out at the bottom smiling. The boys both had good lines and we were all stoked to have fired up a drop of that size. To cap off the day the boys decided that they had not had enough excitement and got charged by a grizzly bear.
The summer has been pretty rad and it’s still getting better stay posted for another update soon... Hopefully.