2015-11-27 2015 World R6 Rafting Championships
We have arrived! After some lengthy travels for many of us, we are almost all assembled at the venue for the 2015 World Rafting Championships in West Java, Indonesia. Still to arrive are Bill (and most of our paddles), and Jenny our team nurse. All being well, we will see them tomorrow more...
2015-06-07 2015 Canadian R4 Rafting Championships
We again headed over to the Rouge river and New World rafting for a very well organised race. The first day was certainly busy, with the first 3 events all happening in one run down the river. The field was the biggest seen in recent years more...
2014-10-19 2014 World R4 Rafting Championships
On Oct 8th, 2014 I started my journey to the south, escaping the soon to be cold of the north yet again. This time however for a much better reason then usual. Myself and a few other Canadian boys were elected to be the R4 national Canadian team in summer of 2013. We trained hard up 'til the date of departure more...
2013-11-08 2013 World R6 Rafting Championships
We are all now in Rotorua, New Zealand, ready to get some training in for the upcoming World Rafting Championships. The team managed to converge on Okere Falls today for a few familiarisation runs down the Kaituna river. For some of us, it was the first time down, and it really is as good as everyone says! more...
2013-06-10 2013 Canadian R4 Rafting Championships
The first day of the Canadian rafting championships saw some great racing from the ladies teams. The Petawawa river was the venue for the sprint course, down Lovers and Catwalk rapids. Water levels were good, and provided challenging conditions for all the entrants. more...
2012-09-21 2012 Pan-American R6 Rafting Championships
At the end of September we made our way to Quebec to compete in our first international rafting event; the World Cup/Pan-American Championships. This event was not only our first international rafting competition but it would also act as the Canadian Championships, deciding which team would represent Canada at the 2013 World Rafting Championships in New Zealand. more...
2011-06-04 2011 Canadian R4 Rafting Championships
Fresh from our recent success at Hell or High Water 2011, we were determined to do well at the Canadian championships, our aim being to win and thereby qualify for the 2012 R4 worlds. On arriving at the Jaques-Cartier river north of Quebec city we found a quality run of fairly continuous grade 4 water on the Tewkesbury section. more...
2011-05-07 Hell or High Water 2011
The annual Hell or High Water festival is fast becoming an established Ottawa valley boaters favourite. After having had such a great time at last year's event; Hell or High Water 2010, we put in some training in the week leading up to the race - more...
2010-09-02 2010 Canadian R6 Rafting Championships
This is it! After countless early mornings training hard we were on our way. We had arrived in the Saguenay region of Quebec the previous night after a long drive from the Ottawa. Keen to hit the rivers and get some practice in before our first race against the Qubec teams, we drove up to St Stanislas and the Mistassibi. It did not dissapoint - more...
2010-06-08 The Rouge - Seven Sisters
Fresh from our successful run of the Kipawa, we set our sights on the series of drops on the Rouge river in Quebec. As soon as we could get a team together, a check of the levels confirmed that the waterfalls known as the Seven Sisters were all good to go. This time we bought some kayakers with us to run safety cover. more...
2010-05-07 The Kipawa
After having taken delivery of our brand new raft (thanks SOTAR!), we were keen to get out and run some rivers. The only problem - the driest spring and summer in living memory! With our plans for adventures further afield scuppered, we settled upon a low water Kipawa trip. more...
2010-05-01 Hell or High Water 2010
A fresh Mayday weekend in the Ottawa valley - what better opportunity to get out for the first run of the season? We wrapped up warm and headed to the superb Hell or High Water event. This event usually sees the Petawawa river in full spring flow, and this year was no exception. more...
Canadian R4 Rafting Championships
2015-06-01 Preparing for the Canadian R4 Championships
Next Sunday is the start of the Canadian R4 Rafting championships on the Rouge river. We have been out training, and are greatly looking forward to paddling on the Rouge again. This year, we have enough paddlers for two teams, and apparently there are some other teams entered as well - it should be a great race. For a taste of what is to come, here is a video of last year's R6 race from Jean-Philippe Paiement.
2015-06-07 2015 Canadian R4 Rafting Championships - day 1
We again headed over to the Rouge river and New World rafting for a very well organised race. The first day was certainly busy, with the first 3 events all happening in one run down the river. The field was the biggest seen in recent years, with 3 open and 1 junior teams in both mens and ladies competition.
Our contingent of paddlers was enough for us to field two teams for the races, ensuring some stiff competition. The sprint event was on the Family rapid, and resulted in a tie for first place; 2:16 for both our team 1 and team A! Moving down river to Elizabeth Seul rapid for the head to head race, both our teams progressed through to the final and met up again. A better heat result saw team A take the choice of starting position, managed to edge out in front, and kept the lead through the drop and to the finish.
After a hearty riverside lunch provided by the organisers, we floated down to the start of the Washing Machine rapid. This was the venue for the slalom race, and the hole at the bottom certainly claimed a few boats during the racing! The course was challenging, with some great moves to make.
First runs saw a solid performance from both of our teams, getting all the gates and with good lines. The greater slalom experience of team 1 gave them the competitive edge and a slightly faster time. This continued in the second run, with a great performance - only one touch and smooth lines all the way. Team A had a slightly rougher go of it, losing two paddlers in the stopper at gate 8.
So the day ended with each of our teams on two wins and a second place - everything hinges on tomorrow's performance in the downriver race!
2015-06-08 2015 Canadian R4 Rafting Championships - day 2
A good dose of rain overnight had brought the river up slightly for the hotly contested downriver race. Since team 1 had a higher points total from yesterday's racing, they had choice of starting position. The start was le Mans style, with a single paddler running down to the rest of the team waiting in the raft in the river. As expected, team 1 took the lead, with team A in hot pursuit.
Our teams were certain not to give any ground against each other, and a better line choice in one of the early rapids saw team A in the lead by a few boat lengths.
The wide sweeping corner above Elizabeth Seul rapid was the time for team 1 to re-take the lead, using the faster water on the outside of the bend, and a surge of power to regain the lead. Both teams had smooth lines through the drop, emerging with team A in hot pursuit.
It was in the run-up to the larger rapids that team A chose to make a passing attempt, and the teams came into contact yet again. A furious burst onto the faster water meant team A finally gained some ground, but was constantly harassed by the chasing team 1 through the lead up to the Washing Machine rapid. A good line at the top from team A gave them a few boat lengths lead, only to be lost again as team 1 took a big risky line through the hole and caught up again. The run-out to the finish line was when the action really heated up, with different line choices from the two teams ending up with both boats neck and neck for the push over the flats to the line. Team A made use of their position closer to the flow to edge ahead, and won by a slim margin.
We all agreed that the racing was fantastic, and really good preparation for the members of each team that will be heading to Indonesia later this year for the 2015 R6 World Rafting Championships.
Paddlers; (Team A) Gwyn Ashcroft, Graham Ball, Tim Wintoniw, Tyler Fox
Paddlers; (Team 1) Drew Sellen, William Leslie, Lars Romeskie, Jon Booren