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Old 11-26-2010, 07:41 PM   #1
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Default Funny Paddling Experiences


Does anyone care to share their funniest paddling experiences?

Here are four of mine:

1. Many years ago on a club trip to Goose Creek in Loudon County, VA, a complete newbie, paddling solo in one of the widest canoes I've ever seen, and I were in the pool of water waiting for everyone else on the trip to get their boats and gear ready to head down river. As he and I were talking, I noticed that he didn't have a strap to hold on his very thick-lensed eyeglasses in the event of a capsize. I checked my gear and found that I had an extra one and called over to him to come get it. As soon as he was no more than two to three feet from my canoe, he began to extend his arm to get the strap, leaned over, fell out of his boat right next to my canoe, and lost his glasses! The poor guy was half-blind, a complete newbie, and now faced one very blurry trip. Thank goodness it's a short run. I felt very sorry for the guy, but on an impersonal level, the irony of the situation was pretty funny.

2. I would occasionally take non paddling friends on the Violet's lock loop on the Potomac River in my canoe. This day, I took a young lady who had very little paddling experience. In those days, paddlers still used workmen's kneepads that strapped on behind the knees. As I was getting the boat and gear ready, I handed a pair of these kneepads to my friend and told her to put them on without bothering to tell her what they were. After I finished getting the boat ready, I looked up to see that she had strapped the kneepads to the bottom of her feet! I had all I could do to suppress the laughter.

3. On a club trip to the Cacapon River in West Virginia, paddlers at the put in where the downward sloping parking area was very close to the river. As one guy was removing the ropes or straps from his kayak, the boat somehow got away from him, slid off the rack, onto the grass, down the short bank and into the river all by itself. It was on its way! Fortunately, I was able to chase it down in my boat before the kayak made it too far down river.

4. On this day a young woman friend of mine (bow) and I were on a club trip in my Tripper going down the Staircase on the Shenandoah River near Harper's Ferry, West VA. We ran Bull Falls, a 3-4 foot drop just fine except that we took on quite a bit of water in the drop and even more at the ledge below the drop. By then the boat was pretty full, and as we paddled over to the recovery rocks, still upright, the river and the boat sorta became one, and we just calmly stepped (floated?) right out. But before stepping out, my friend in the bow, oblivious to just how much water was behind her in the boat (it was up to the gunwales and there was no center air bag), in a classic case of understatement and or cluelessness, asked me very matter-of-factly to hand her the gallon jug bailer to so she could start getting rid of the water.
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