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My swim calendar reset yesterday.

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My swim calendar reset yesterday.

Post by Flying_Spaghetti_Monster on Mon 28 May 2012, 8:54 am

I wanted to hand paddle the Green Narrows before I left the south east, and yesterday was the day. Meeting a buddy that was taking some people down the Upper Green I put on, and bombed down solo through Bride, and Frankenstein. I got out hiked my boat to the top of Frankenstein, and waited. It was a peaceful feeling being where I was, and all alone, but I wanted support for the rapids down stream. I ran another solo lap on Frankenstein, and was sitting in the eddy when someone came up, and said the group I was looking for was down stream. Bombing down through Pin cushion, Whale Tail, and Boof or Consequence. I met up with some people I knew at the top of Go Left. One of them was Keith Sprinkle a very well know hand paddler that has won the race many times. I ask him what the stroke sequence was. He said keep driving left, and don't stop.
Some info on Go Left: For those that don't know Go Left has a nasty hole at certain levels, that is compounded by being walled in, and backed up my a nasty sieve.

Having run Go Left many times I was feeling really good about it today. I had styled everything above, and the fact that I was alone when I did it fueled my trust in my self that I was going to style Go Left with so many people for safety. Coming off the log I was in the right spot driving hard left, and the pad actively paddling. Coming off that drop I was still in the right place, but when I landed Sprinkle said I just sat there. Feeling my boat tug I knew I was screwed. Quickly sucked in the hole, and window shade after window shade I fought to get up. Rolling up I had enough time to watch my bow swing upstream with river right angle. This is considered the "Angle of Death" because once you get that angle you can not get out the hole, and you will swim. Getting quickly window shaded again. I still worked to get out of the hole, but it was no use. I hooked my hand paddles on my cockpit rim, popped them off, and pulled my skirt in a very fluid motion. Coming out of my boat I could only think man I hope I don't find that sieve. Swimming strait up to avoid it I felt the current grab my body, and fling me over. Coming up for air I went to take a breath, and was sucked down by a strong eddy current which filled my mouth with water. Not having any air to blow it out I swallowed most of it. Finally getting a breath I swam to an eddy filled with boaters, and my boat followed soon after.
This goes to show no matter how many times you run a rapid clean it can get you on the best of days. The hole was not at its strongest, but it was strong that day, and was quite the experience being in there.
For what that rapid is with all of its dangers it was fairly pleasant in there. I never felt like I was going to die, and I did not even get hurt. That rapid could easily kill someone in or out of their boat so I was lucky. We are all between swims, and sometimes knowing when to pull is a good thing. I did not pull on my last breath I pulled when I knew I had enough to swim to an eddy as well. Holding on is good, but don't hold on so long you can not make it to safety.
Another Fun tip: that is the Polk County Line in NC so if you get beat down you say "The folks at the Polk County Welcome Center were pretty rude today." There was a photographer there, and I am hoping to get a sick shot of it that I plan to blow up, and have Welcome to Polk County on the photo Smile
Embrace beatdowns they are a great part of boating, and when you are safe on the other side that is almost better than running it clean. I learned a lot in that swim.

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Re: My swim calendar reset yesterday.

Post by Jeff Young on Mon 28 May 2012, 12:01 pm

Stout work. Glad it worked out. I'm sure Trey's pics will be awesome!
Jeff Young

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Re: My swim calendar reset yesterday.

Post by Dave on Mon 28 May 2012, 1:10 pm

Flying_Spaghetti_Monster wrote:
Embrace beatdowns they are a great part of boating, and when you are safe on the other side that is almost better than running it clean. I learned a lot in that swim.
There is more truth to that than might be obvious at first.

It never ceases to amaze me how much can be learned in a hole/beatdown... not just about boating... but about oneself as well.

Nicely told my friend... and congrats!! sunny


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Re: My swim calendar reset yesterday.

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