Meet the CKS Squad Part 3: Nicole Mansfield
Meet the CKS Squad Part 3: Nicole Mansfield This is Part 3 of a Series of posts that introduces the members of the 2007 CKS Squad. Included in each section is the squad member's Bio and a brief photographic Trip Report of their Top 3 days on the river during the 2006 season. Today we are meeting Nicole and getting a glimpse into her top 3 days of the 2006 season: Crested Butte, Colorado (OBJ), The Big South, CO and Playboating in the Arkansas Valley. Nicole was exposed to these great runs when she moved to CO from Buffalo, NY for the 2006 river season to work at CKS and huck some gnar. Speaking of Hucking the Gnar, check out her cool Huck and Boof stickers here: Nicoles words: Arkansas Valley Play-Photo courtesy of the HZG Inc. foundation. "I can’t nail down the particular day this photo was taken, but it represents an entire summer of fun on the Arkansas River. You really can’t beat a river that in a small road accessible area hosts numerous sections for all paddling abilities whose characteristics change as the season progresses AND has several amazing play spots in both Salida and Buena Vista. I moved to Salida thinking playboating was dumb, but ended it with a Jackson Happy Thruster and memories of too many play sessions to bother counting."
After work playboating in Salida, CO
Oh’ Be Joyful- Photo by Chris Larsen "I had not even started working yet at CKS, but my boss had called, and there I was traveling with some people I just met to an amazing day of creeking on the Slate, Daisy, and Oh’ Be Joyful Rivers. Nothing beats being surrounded by snow covered peaks on a sunny day, eating leftover pizza and running short runs packed with waterfalls, slides, and a limited number of beatdown holes. I discovered that when local boaters say you are running something on ‘the high side of good,’ you are in for a thrill."

Nicole on a high water OBJ run....her first creek in CO!

Big South – Photo by Mike Holliday "Maybe you think being sandwiched between two guys in a two person tent is what any girl would dream of. But when neither are slight of size and the other who forgot his sleeping bag is not kept warm enough by the ‘Hello Kitty’ fleece provided so the sleeping bag is unzipped to share, the night is sure to keep you chilly and uncomfortably wedged. With or without a sufficient night of sleep, morning came, the Big South was running, and Chris Menges made us river sandwiches individually wrapped in plastic to stay dry! There is no wonder why the Big South is considered a Colorado classic. The river’s continuous whitewater is characterized by bigger scout worthy drops filled in with exciting boogie water. It’s a long day, so dress warmly, bring food, and when you find an easy boof near the end of the river, remember it might be easy, but you still need to think about boofing rather than what you would love to eat at the take out or else your boat might acquire another war wound."

Nicole 'chillin' on the Big South

Nicole in New Zealand....Winter 06 / 07. Photo by Larry.

Check out Nicole's full Bio by clicking this link:

Nicole at home in New York....she runs the s#*t back East too!

Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published

About Us

We're a group of whitewater kayak, raft, and stand up paddleboard enthusiasts committed to stocking the highest-quality gear and deliver it to you as quickly as possible.

Learn more about us

Don't Forget About These

What else are we up to?

View all
Down and Dirty: 9 Items You Need for Your Dry Suit Repair Kit

Down and Dirty: 9 Items You Need for Your Dry Suit Repair Kit

GearJonny Ortiz
Whitewater dry wear is the largest apparel investment any boater can make. For those who want to extend the life and use of their dry suit (or dry top), it's best to keep a dry suit repair kit on hand. Read our 9 recommendations for the best dry suit repair kit!
Whitewater Kayak Paddle Buying Guide

Whitewater Kayak Paddle Buying Guide

Jonny Ortiz
Choosing the right paddle for whitewater kayaking can be daunting with all the available paddle options to consider. We are here to help! ...
All Aboard the Love Boat!

All Aboard the Love Boat!

Benjamin Thornton

Have you ever had a tough time convincing your family that your black eye isn't that big of a deal? Or spent an hour explaining to your Tinder date the difference between "homeless" and "houseless," just so they would understand why you brought them back to a tent in the woods? 

If you answered yes to either of these things, hopefully this blog can help avoid some of those awkward conversations!