Saturday, February 02, 2013

Winter Grand Canyon

It's day 4 of our marathon sprint 7 day trip.  Ice has been forming on my gear all day long, a stiff headwind is stinging my face and it is 6pm and dark, we have been paddling for 9 hours.  Strangely I'm enjoying myself, I feel fine with paddling for a few more hours, I've been so cold that its funny to me and I'm laughing as we crush mile after mile; is the grand supposed to be a suffer fest?  Luckily I'm brought out of my focus for downstream progress by Ric yelling at me from a beach that I can barely see below a rapid.  I get out of my boat and every piece of gear I have is frozen, luckily I had undone my lifejacket straps a half hour before camp when I could still manage to.  I stripped off my frozen gear and got into my 5 layers of dry clothing, drank some hot chocolate, set up my tent and started a raging fire.  We all cooked our meals, drank some choice alcoholic beverages, went on a cool random night side canyon scramble/climb, and went to sleep satisfied that we got as much out of the day as we could have anywhere.

Most nights of the trip were something similar to the above short story above.  The canyon was the coldest it has been in 37 years, 7 days was WAY too short of a trip, it was as amazing as ever and fun as hell to paddle most of the big rapids in one 45 mile day (hance to blacktail).  Our group of 4 was made of of people that have paddled some of the hardest whitewater in the world and yet everyone was having a great time, paddling our 200 lb boats down the river.

Self support trips are my favorite kind of kayaking trips, no loading/unloading rafts is so much nice.  I have done the canyon 6 times now with half of those trips in the winter and every single trip is unique and memorable in its own way.  This trip was a boys night out kind of trip that lasted a week, and was a great way to start off the 2013 season, I have never felt so strong in January before, but paddling 40 miles a day will do that.  Enough of my babbling, I'll end with my top 5 pieces of gear to bring on a winter trip and some photos.

1) thermos: great for hot drinks and soup
2) The warmest sleeping bag you have (Louis had a 30 degree and froze his ass off)
3) Arugula, it adds a little bit of roughage to the diet and goes great with tons of stuff, plus its pretty hearty and can stand up the cold temps)
4) Gatorade powder (you still have to hydrate in the desert in winter, it's hard to do with cold ass water)
5) Your crossover boat of choice, I took the wavesport ethos and loved it, we saw pyranha, jackson and liquid logic crossover's and everyone seemed please.  I'm looking forward to getting my hands on the dagger crossover boat as well!
The crew at the put-in, looks balmy? (Tom, Louis Geltman, Steve Arns, Ric Moxon) 

Gotta love enjoying some fine local durango brew at redwall cavern, day 2

    Lots of gear fit in that thing
Myself at lunch on the coldest day of the trip

Staying warm by the fire

 fun class 3, grapevine (I think?)

 Louis in hermit

 Ric showing of his big water sea kayak form

Scenic flatwater

A nice cave out of the wind

Ric soaking in pumpkin springs (nasty)

My favorite shot of the trip, Ric getting western in lava

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

DJ spins out on Saturday nights. * Team answer sheets - Basically a grid lined A4
type sheet with answer write in numbered boxes and a line on top for the team name.
The buccal cavity is a small cavity that has neither
jaws nor teeth.

Also visit my site :: pub quiz archives

Coach Factory said...

oakley sunglasses, oakley vault, jordan shoes, polo ralph lauren outlet, burberry outlet online, michael kors outlet online, true religion, christian louboutin shoes, tiffany and co jewelry, louis vuitton outlet, gucci handbags, christian louboutin outlet, nike shoes, michael kors outlet online, longchamp outlet, tory burch outlet, coach outlet, red bottom shoes, louboutin shoes, ray ban sunglasses, coach purses, michael kors outlet store, air max, louis vuitton outlet online, cheap oakley sunglasses, coach outlet store online, coach factory outlet, prada handbags, chanel handbags, ray ban outlet, longchamp outlet online, kate spade outlet online, burberry outlet online, louis vuitton, polo ralph lauren, nike free, prada outlet, louis vuitton handbags, michael kors outlet online, michael kors outlet, michael kors outlet online, louis vuitton outlet, kate spade handbags, longchamp handbags, nike air max

Coach Factory said...

barbour, oakley pas cher, abercrombie and fitch, nike air force, mac cosmetics, ray ban uk, air max, guess pas cher, vans outlet, hermes pas cher, michael kors uk, nike roshe, ralph lauren pas cher, timberland, hollister, longchamp pas cher, sac michael kors, lululemon, sac vanessa bruno, michael kors canada, sac louis vuitton, mulberry, north face pas cher, ray ban pas cher, longchamp, converse pas cher, chaussure louboutin, nike blazer pas cher, longchamp, nike trainers, nike roshe run, lacoste pas cher, louis vuitton uk, scarpe hogan, nike huarache, tn pas cher, louis vuitton, hollister, louis vuitton pas cher, north face, ralph lauren, nike air max, new balance pas cher, vans pas cher, roshe run, abercrombie and fitch, nike free, nike free pas cher, hollister, burberry pas cher