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Cali Kayak and My Water Tennies - David Farkas

Cali Kayak and My Water Tennies - David Farkas
Cali Kayak and My Water Tennies - David Farkas
Cali Kayak and My Water Tennies - David Farkas
Cali Kayak and My Water Tennies - David Farkas
Cali Kayak and My Water Tennies - David Farkas
October 12, 2012 - was my 2012 creeking season????  That's an interesting question and one that I've been pondering a lot lately.  The snowpack in the San Juans around Durango was weak to say the least, yet mellows temps supplied 2+ months of epic levels on all our creeks.  Having the best grade V+ run in Colorado minutes from my doorstep made for wonderful days...

2012 marked the launch of the Bazooka...the best creek boat I've paddled.  Fluid knocked off some much needed lbs. and designed a completely new boat.  Raised decks, plenty of volume both up front and behind the seat, a new outfitting system, and a transitional hull (round seat forward, rails and flat seat backwards) all lend to a boat that paddles easily, boofs like a champ, stores equipment well, and is fast.  5.10 also sent me a new pair of the Water Tennies and let me tell you, they rip.  High ankle cuffs, stiff sole, grippy rubber, lightweight even when wet.  This shoe quickly became my go to for creekin.  They provide a sense of security when portaging and the slick Cali granite...well you need something that sticks.

I paddled in Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and California.  Stacked up a list of brilliant runs, overnights and daily's, with some phenomenal equipment supplied by the best - 5.10, Fluid, Kokatat, WRSI, and Seals Skirts.

On the one hand, I paddled with some of my closest mates on some classic runs, I met a whole new crew of paddlers who rip and are a ton of fun, and I banged up and paddled a lot of days in the Bazooka.  All in all it was a great time and one I look back at fondly.

On the other hand, I had a swim on Upper Cherry Creek that was monumental...the kind of swim that no one wants to go through.  If I didn't have the right crew with me, who knows how it would have ended.  It was a serious beat down, the kind I've never had before...rescue breaths..and a rescue chopper flight.  The kind of stuff that you never want happening to anyone let alone you.  In 15+ years of grade V kayaking I've taken a beating, swam some drops, and had my share of bootie beers. This was the first time I thought I was truly a goner.  How did it change my kayaking?  I slowed down, took some weeks off to reflect, and then hopped back in and paddled my local run (Baker's Box) to see how I would feel.  Nervous at first, I quickly regained my confidence and paddled with a purpose.  Get your head back on fella.

So 2012 has been a year to remember.  I put together a little vid on some fun stuff from California with my epic on UCC at the end.  I'll be writing more about the UCC trip with pics to follow.


Photo credit: Dave Farkas (GoPro), Daan Jimmink

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