Saturday, May 30, 2009

Upper Clackamas Whitewater Festival

The Upper Clackamas Whitewater Festival (May 16- 17) was an action packed weekend for paddlers of all ability. For me the fun began with the kayak mass start race. In this event 15-20 paddlers in playboats all sprinted through carter rapid and to the finish gate below. Throughout the race I was near the front of the group battling it out between 4 other paddlers for first place. I wasn't able to take first, but I was the third one to pass under the finish line. Shortly after this event was over my brother and I met up with two other paddlers who were interested in entering in the relay race. We took up the offer, and over the 4 part course our team took first place. To end the action packed day, my brother and I competed in the big air competition. This was hands down the most exciting event. Every athlete slide down a 30ft. ramp off a 5ft. jump in to the river below. I was able to throw down a variety of barrel roll tricks, and even attempted a few backflips. The highlight of this event was watching Steven Olsen fly down the ramp twice as fast as anyone else with a skateboard attached to the bottom of his kayak and throw huge tricks. Unfortunately I wasn't able to place in this event, but Todd Baker threw numerous stylish barrel roll tricks to take first and Steven Olsen came in a close second. I couldn't find many pictures of the event but these photos were shot by David Brigg.

Steven Olsen throws a huge kickflip for second place

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