The following couple posts are flashback posts inspired by paddle trips and water adventures taken in Oregon this fall just before the New Zealand departure. Bringing it back…
Starting a paddle trip super early in the morning is favorable for a few reasons. The first, is that when you have a paddle planned for the morning, if your like me, its kind of like Christmas, its hard to sleep, you’ll be up early from excitement anyhow. Additionally, if you are a morning person like me, you will paddle harder early in the day. Over the seasons I have noticed there is a direct relationship between my paddle strength and the lateness of day.
One reason why early paddles in the Willamette Valley can be cumbersome is fog. Not only does it effect visibility but it makes for a frigid first few miles. Many extra layers are crucial even though it seems silly because they always end up in a dry bag after a few hours.
The section between Champoeg and the Canby Ferry was challenging for it’s low flow and thus slow discharge. For a paddle boarder, this makes for essentially a lake paddle. This is great when your new to the sport as well. It feels comfortable to have complete control over speed.
In contrast, two days ago, paddling the largest discharge river in New Zealand (NZ), the Clutha, I realized the wonders and joys of none ranking rapids and moving at upwards of 12 k’s an hour while standing on an inflatable, something I would have been terrified of in Oregon. But more about that in future posts.
Before NZ, flat water had its draw: training, fighting for every mile of progress, and the ability to enjoy the scenery.