Alder Creek kicks off paddling season with Paddle Festival 4/24-4/25

20 04 2010

The do-not-miss paddling event is this weekend! Alder Creek’s annual Paddle Festival starts Saturday and continues through Sunday!

Alder Creek Festival at Vancouver Lake

Whether you have never paddled or you’ve been doing it for years, in a kayak, canoe, or stand-up paddleboard, whitewater or flatwater, this event is for you. And it’s FREE. There will be representatives from the major paddling industry to answer your questions and give you a chance to try their products on the water. You’ll also be able to take advantage of the many clinics offered, from first strokes to rescues to expeditions.

Both days offer seminars. Saturday’s schedule is set out more on basics, and how to choose a boat, and Sunday more on the water seminars and learning. There will also be guided tours of Vancouver Lake. So head on over!

Location: Vancouver Lake, Vancouver, WA

For more information, visit the Alder Creek Website.

A sampling of companies represented:

Werner Paddles


Jackson Kayaks

Confluence Watersports (Dagger, Wavesport, Wilderness Systems, Perception, Mad River Canoe)

Current Designs


Valley Sea Kayaks

Pyranha Kayaks

Take advantage of this opportunity! Hope to see you out there.

Northwest Creeking Competition 2010

20 04 2010

On April 10 over 70 boaters and rafters gathered at Sunset Falls Campground on the East Fork of the Lewis River, Washington for the Northwest Creeking Competition! Water levels were great and a good time was had by all. I volunteered to help officiate, working the finish line with ACA’s Jim Virgin.

Early arrivals were warmed with coffee from Blunt Family Paddles and Shannon Crosswhite at the registration desk. Willie takes it all in. Luke Spencer is the man in charge, and he’s not shy about promoting those t-shirts!

Registration gets busy!

Everyone wants a NWCC t-shirt!

It wasn’t long before I got reunited with a lot of river friends. Like the demographics of this group! Although a chilly start to this day, and windy, too – we knew lots of fun, thrills, spills and excitement lay ahead. More and more folks kept piling in to the event.

Luke, Jenn and I went down to the finish area to get it set up. We set out signs and decided on the exact spot for the finish, a rock with a traffic cone on top. The stairs to the river, though rehabilitated, had already been abused by the elements and it wasn’t long before hazards developed.

Folks, sorry about the step!

Might skip that thar step there!

And it wasn’t long before we had some finishers! The first few races were timed – competitors going every 60 seconds. Mostly they finished one at a time. But sometimes one on top of the other. Paddlers had put everything into the race and a few hurled at the end…and others pooled like fish while they caught their breath. Many dunked their drysuit-wearing bodies in the cold river.

Tao Berman, winner of the pro division, ready to run the long boat division!

Catching their collective breath – All rafted up…

We had a number of rafters! The Oregon Rafting Team sent a number of boats, and we had some women teams too!

By far the most fun was the end of the day – the mass start. This race is everyone at once! No timing! First one to finish gets all the glory!  After all the action, Next Adventure fed all hungry souls a barbeque! Well, you can see what happens at the waterfall, and everybody’s on shore to take in the action!


The Mass Start

It was a great 2010 and we’ll see you next year!