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June 5, 2005

Hey EJ,

Another great weekend on the river. Took Brad over
to Nantahal for his first solo run in a hard-shell. I was a little worried
about cutting him loose, because he still doesn’t have a roll. But, what
the heck, what’s a few swims among friends???

Brad is now up to about 75+ lbs. So I was worried that
his Fun1 would be edgy for him in Nanty’s current. So, I stopped in at
NOC and rented a Fun1.5 for a half day. It was $25 well spent for 4 hour’s

I let Brad put on right below Patton’s Run at the overlook.
He did great!! The Fun 1.5 floated him super. He didn’t catch an edge
all day. More important, the boat was still small enough for him to keep
great control over it. We had a big group, which included three sets of
fathers and sons. Neat!! Also there were two new paddlers – the ones that
we taught to roll in the Rocker – and two other solid boaters. In all,
it was a good mix with plenty of help in case of trouble. Other than a
swim or two, everyone had a great day.

On the river, I let Brad lead me through most of the
easy stuff. If there is a line that he really needs to made, I’d lead
him. I want him to learn to read lines and make up his own mind, without
getting too beat up. Next time, now that he’s done the run once, I’ll
let him show me the whole way. He enjoys it. Before the run was over,
Brad was trying to ferry. He was catching eddies with little problem and
even playing on a little wave or two. I let him pass Bump, but he ran
everything else head on. He took out above the falls and didn’t have a
swim getting there. Very nice.

So, we let everyone run the falls that wanted too.
Then I loaded Brad back in the Fun 1.5 below Little Wesser to go down
to the take-out on river left below the slalom course. I’d just been there
back in April and the play wave was gone. Well, the boys have been busy
down there over the last month and now there are a couple of nice size
holes, with a play wave. Ooops!!! I had no choice but to lead Brad into
the middle of one of the holes. Heck, it took me in my Fun all they way
in to my arm pits. I turned back and yelled, "lean forward and paddle
hard." The next thing I saw was Brad dropping into it and then a
perfect stern squirt!!. He flipped and I grabbed his boat, but he was
out before I could right him. LOL. He grabbed my cow tail and I took him
the ten feet to shore. Other than the cold water, he thought it was funny.

We’ve enjoyed his Fun1 so much, but it’s time to move
him up. He’ll have no problem continuing his work on his roll in the bigger
Fun1.5 and he’ll be better able to run more rivers with the extra volume.
He’s got his $5 pass for Nanty and already asking to go back to his new
"favorite river." I think he’ll be in a new ride within the
next week or so.

Take care.




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Brad on the Nanty

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Brad Nanty Fun1.5

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Brad Group