That's what I thought to myself...I'd been in the raft with some cohorts from work for about 10 minutes, my first time in a raft...first time in a small boat in water really. I looked at the safety kayaker beside us floating on the turbulent and though I don't know for sure, but based on it being late June, I imagine high and turbulent water of the Chilliwack Canyon. That looks easy enough, 'look at him, he's just floatin' along, taking it easy!'..I can do that I thought. It was the same big bald dude who gave the safety briefing that almost stopped me from going! ..holes, logs, foot entrapment, all kinds of terms and dangers I'd never even heard of or expected in anything I'd ever done besides maybe running clear into one on the slopes. Some of us joked he should've been the new Sergeant Major the way he could convey fear into words.
The ironic part was that I barely had time to look up the entire trip, between following the commands of the raft leader and paddling my gears clean off, yet I thought it'd be easy to go down the most difficult part of the river as one person in a boat not much bigger than me. At the time I had no concept of things such as boyancy, surface area, reading and how they might relate to navigating the water.
It took a couple months, but I would end up doing it..and these are some of my stories from along the way and afterwards.
My goal with this blog is to convey some of the feeling associated with being a new paddler, someone who has never been in a real boat or around much water for that matter, and how he can try to take control and master the unknown. Each day I'll be adding at least one post from my paddling adventures, maybe more. Hopefully I can get some people interested who've never considered navigating whitewater. At the very least it would be nice to draw some attention to issues that affect whitewater kayakers in the modern world...and believe me there are more than a few as we'll see in the coming months.
Chilliwack River Rafting