As many of you loyal Colorado Kayak Supply Squad blog readers may know, I missed nearly all of the now legendary Summer of 2011 kayaking season. I was stuck in Texas. I know, you just threw up in your mouth a little and I'm sorry too. But I must have built up some pretty good Karma somewhere because I now find myself in a place that I have always wanted to be for a year.... The South East!
Now is my time to gloat because as you all sink into winter, I'm going to provide you with some impetus to get off your booty and go exploring during Colorado's off-season. We're just warming up down here.....
After unloading, but not unpacking all of the boxes from our moving truck, I did what any legitimate creeker would do. I loaded up the wife, dog, tent and paddling gear for a journey directly to Green River Adventures where I picked my very own Green River Access Key!
|$60 entitles you access to the Shit, year-round!
And the beauty of the Green became mine. Sunshine, big boofs, warm water, and a ridiculous number of rapids deep in the Green River Gorge.
|Gone Left, without dying even!
I know, I know. You have read about the Green. You have seen pictures of Sunshine and Gorilla and know they run 300 days each year. If you haven't been here you still can't appreciate how good the Green really is. There are still so many rapids and great boofs that people don't take the time to photograph. The depth of the entire gorge and the thick foliage are impossible to adequately capture on film, but I'll try for a few shots.
|Mmmm....sorta reminds me of California - relaxed 8 foot boof.
|The Groove Tube. Definitely one of my favorites. First you disappear, then you fall 10 feet.
The Southeast is of course home to many of the best creekers the world has known. I pretty much only hang out with the sickest, like Pat Keller and Toby McDermont.*
|*Pat did not know I took this photo of him at Sunshine and has no idea who I am. I did give Toby a shuttle ride once and I think he even drank one of my PBRs.
|Sunshine and clear water heading into the Factor
|A smooth ride through the Hammer
|One of the possible alternate lines at Hammer Factor
|Looking down into the sweet sticky goodness of the Polk County Welcome Center
So there is another taste of the off season for all of you jonsin' Colorado kayakers. Be sure to get out and get some paddling done this fall and winter! I plan to keep assailing you with Southeastern classics, so you'll be really aching if you don't. The Russell Fork is this upcoming weekend, Gauley after that and the Talluah Gorge following. And those are just if it doesn't rain!
I did manage to get one photo of me in Colorado this spring. And sure enough, it proves once and for all that I do have 3 'o's in my booof! Furthermore, this shot also proves that if I had been able to make the Race
then the Buckle would be inscribed with Huckin Duckie.
|Kirk, a fellow SE boater and last year's winner, agreed that this stroke alone would have guaranteed a win. Also note the awesome CKS stickers!
And I leave you with a great parting shot that you will have a hard time finding in Colorado....