Monday, March 01, 2004



After a long winter break I finally got to get out on the Potomac in July. The spring had been busy and high water levels were scarring me some. Having started during the drought the summer before anything above 5 feet on the Little Falls gauge seemed above my head. I ran into Suzi at Angler’s one day. We were both pretty frustrated with our lack of decent paddling partners and started paddling together regularly.

During the week we would paddle up the canal from Carderock and float back down, playing around at Offut and Yellow Falls along the way. We practiced rolling and learned offside and hand rolls. We were both pretty conservative and were quite happy to take things slow and just have some relaxing afternoons. On weekends we would run the gorge, sometimes driving to the Virginia side. It’s funny how scary S-Turn seemed back then. With time we started learning how to surf at VA Chute. In September we went to Gauley Fest.

As summer drew to a close I was feeling pretty confident with my skills. We met Ian L. at Gauley Fest and he ended up taking me on my first Lower Yough run in October. After that I was determined to keep paddling through the winter this time. I bought all the dry gear I would need and was ready to keep paddling. I signed up for a BCE membership and went to a few Dickerson sessions over the winter. I was determined not to take too long a break from boating due to winter(i took a 6 week break between January and February when the river was frozen but otherwise paddled at least some part of each month) I wanted to get as much practice in as I could so that I would be ready to start running rivers in the spring. That fall I spent a good bit of time surfing at Offut, a nice friendly playspot that was easy to get to. I also got up enough courage to try out Center Chute hole and had a great time. I couldn’t wait to get more boating in. I had also gotten my brand new playboat at Gauley Fest.

In the spring of 2004 I spent as much time playing on the Potomac as I could to maintain my skills. Most of the time was spent at Offut again as spring levels seemed to stick just below 5 feet. There were also a few fun days at Center Chute mixed in. But what I really wanted was to get into more serious paddling and as luck would have it Josh moved back into town and in May my river running career finally took off…

Labels: ,

hit counter code
low cost web hosting

Locations of visitors to this page