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Reno River Festival


Held the Biggest Little City there is, the Reno River Festival has once again delivered. An event filled with great music, great food, beer and KAYAKING!


This year Saturday started off with COLD COLD weather which only got worse as the day progressed. There were a few brave souls who watched as the freestyle event took place. It all started at 10am at Hole Number 5 at the Reno Whitewater Park. The Women kicked things off and the battle between 4-10 was intense. Top three- Claire, Emily and Ruth had a commanding lead but the battle to make it into the top 5 was neck in neck. Jessica Yurtinus and Sage Donnelly ended up edging out a finals regular- Courtney Kerin from NZ. Devon Barker and several others just missing out on the chance to compete in finals later in the day.

In the Mens it was also close as they competed under the worst of conditions- SNOW! I believe it’s a first for Reno River Festival Weekend. Demshitz showed up and styled it with very few practice rides. Both Mat Anger and Dave Fusilli paddled quite well. Stephen Wright has been recovering from an injury so he paddled for the first time with a paddle in several weeks. He pulled out great rides in Jackson Kayak Rockstar and landed himself a spot in the finals. Alec Voorhees placed 5th with two solid rides. He did many different tricks in several rides. If he had landed all his tricks in one ride it would have been epic. The no surprise comeback kid- Jason Craig dominated with the biggest McNasties and Phonics’s of the whole event. Not only did he go huge but he also pulled out tough tricks like the reverse phonics.


We had a good long break, just long enough for everyone to go somewhere to get warm and ready for the Finals. Several people took to the hot tubs, I happily took to the shower. Sure enough at 4:30 we all came out of our hidden corners and hopped back onto the water. Hoeve was announcing so he was doing everything he could to keep us fired up, but also to talk smack about the competitors.


The womens finals was super fun. I improved my scores starting with over a 600. Ruth, Jessica and Sage didn’t quite have the rides they were looking for but continually improved over the event. Claire beat out my first ride by 20 points getting a 680. I went back in after the 3 ladies had improved but not enough to take the top spot.  Loop, Split, Split, Superclean, Right Mcnasty, Right Phonics, Left McNasty, Left Phonics, more cartwheels to a tricky woo after the buzzer… Don’t worry I was dizzy after my ride also. I didn’t score one of the Phonics’s (I believe) which left me with a 740. I was super excited, it wasn’t my best score BUT I scored a LEFT MCNASTY in competition!! Those who know me know that I never do a Left McNasty in competition. So it was a big day for me. Claire went in under pressure and scored a 10- whoops. BUT I knew she was ready for a third try. Sure enough next rounds everyone improved again. Ruth never got her high ride she had in prelims but she did get some great moves. I didn’t improve my score as I coluldnt event breathe still from the round before but Claire came in hot and sure enough took the top spot with a 780.

Next was the Mens- it was a cold and tiring looking finals. But that didn’t stop Jason Craig from absolutely destroying everyone. Sure enough he killed it with a whopping 1380. Stephen Wright got sweet blunt Mcnasties each ride but couldn’t move past them. The Dem-Bros had SWEET combos that put them in 2nd and 3rd and Alec Voorhees didn’t paddle as strong as he could but had great moves, just never in one ride.


Now that its Sunday, the Mothers Day Activities included SUP, Buoy Slaom, and Boater Cross (oh and a quick round of tube-cross!!!)

It Started with SUP but I didn’t get full results, I only know that it was showdown between my personal Kiwi- Courtney Kerin and Sage Donnelly. Courtney killed it in her neon Kokatat Dry Suit and Ruth Gordon’s SUP board.

In the Slalom, Alec Voorhees won the men in his Karma. Followed by David Silk and Hayden Voorhees. In the women’s the lady with the sexy new slalom boat- Sage Donelly took top honors followed by my self in the dinosaur. Okay that’s mean, it wasn’t a dinosaur but it was older then me. I learnt a lot about old school slalom paddling in the session as well as to avoid shallow places, the ropes on the buoys and rocks. : ) Courtney Kerin took third in her zen.


In the Boatercross it was ACTION packed. We had lots of amazing passes, lots of carnage and lots of cheers. Colin Kemp won the mens for his third year in a row with an INCREDIBLE pass. I mean it was picture perfect. Alec and Dave fusilli were tangled for the entire course and Matt Anger and Hayden Voorhees battled it out upstream. In the Kids class the O’Connor Brothers took top honors followed by Connor Voorhees. In the ladies Sage took the top spot after strategically spinning my stern at the buoy. I was ahead on the start and through the flats only to mess up the part where you have to turn. : ) 4 other boaters battled it out for third with Devon Barker swinging in behind Sage and I.

To celebrate the amazing weather Mothers Day brought us we did a quick TUBE Cross- yes I said TUBE. Lets just say even though the weather was nice the water was COLD. I think I could feel my bones : ) It was incredibly fun though- and tippy. If you ever find yourself in a tube cross don’t lean back, and don’t lean forward, wait or sideways for that matter. Just don’t lean period.


I had a wonderful time training with my buddies here. Big shout out to Courtney Kerin for paddling so well after shoulder surgery. Jason Craig for being incredible as always and Ruth Gordon for being the bestest friend a girl could ask for!


Also the biggest Thanks to the lady who made it all possible and continues to put up with my son and I, MOM! Mom you are my best friend and the greatest role model I could ever ask for.  To all the other lady role models I have- I love you and I wish you best of days.


Happy Paddling

Emily Jackson Troutman

Mens Results:

1. Jason Craig 1310
2. Dave Fusilli 980
3. Matt Anger 900
4. Stephen Wright 880
5. Alec Voorhees 680

Womens Freestyle Results

1. Claire Ohara
2. Emily Jackson
3. Ruth Gordon
4. Sage Donnoly

5. Jessica Yurtinus

6. Courtney Kerin

Mens Boatercross Results:

1. Colin Kemp

2. Alec Voorhees

3. David Fusilli

3. Cameron

4. Mat Anger

5. Hayden Voorhees


1. O’Connor 1

2. O’Connor 2

3. Conor Voorhees


1. Sage Donnelly

2. Emily Jackson

3. Devon

4. Claire O’Hara

5. Kathryn

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Thanks to the Sady’s, Phillip Robert, and the Craig’s for the photos in this post!