My brother has three main hobbies: video games, motorcycling, and white water kayaking. Out of those three I bet he would say white water kayaking is the best for your health.
The river isn’t so great right now (not enough water) so we went to the estuary so he could do some flat water tricks.
Kelseydo: When was the first time you tried white water kayaking?
Bro: When I was 15 or 16, there was an outdoor pursuits after school program that introduced me to white water kayaking. At first we just took daggers out on the ocean, and then we got in the smaller white water kayaks and just went to some small creek, which made me want to do more. At the end of the second term you had a choice to do climbing or white water and I decided to do white water.
Kelseydo: Was it challenging when you first started?
Bro: Well, they didn’t teach us how to roll at first, so yeah. The first thing they taught us was how to get out of the boat but the second thing they should’ve taught us was how to roll. Then you don’t have to get out of the boat every time (you flip over) and be super, super tired. This is how they were teaching us, so we’d be going down the river and once and a while someone would bail and then one of the instructors would have to go down the river after them and save their ass. You’d just be soaking wet by the end of the day, which in the end, gave you really good survival skills cuz you did not want to flip over anymore.
Kelseydo: How often do you get out on the water now?
Bro: I try to get out at least two times a week, but mostly during the winter its flat water so that’s not as fun, but once the river starts getting up again then I try to go every day.
Kelseydo: Where are your favorite white water spots?
Bro: Well, I don’t have many spots I’ve actually been to. The rivers that I’ve done are Browns, Oyster, Puntledge, Kananaskis and the Cowichan.
Kelseydo: Out of those spots which one do you like the most?
Bro:The Puntledge is awesome. When the waters up, it’s a ball.
Kelseydo: What are the best and the worst parts about kayaking?
Bro: The best part is that it’s loads of fun, with limited injury compared to other outdoor sports like mountain biking. The worst part is the aspect that you could drown.
Kelseydo: Do you worry about that?
Bro: I don’t worry about it so much because I’m careful that I don’t go into the spots where you can get stuck in a giant hole, get tired and drown.
Kelseydo: Have you ever got stuck in one of those spots and been underwater for too long?
Bro: I got stuck underneath a root once. The root curved down into the ground and the water was going through under the curve. I was surfing a wave right in front of it called ‘tree wave’. I got pulled into the root, hit it, flipped over and I actually got pulled through the hole which was pretty fucking scary. I was lucky I didn’t get hung up anywhere cuz if I did I could’ve got stuck underwater. I was kayaking with two other people so if I was stuck they could help me though. I never kayak by myself on the river; going alone is dangerous.
Kelseydo: What would you say is gear that you can’t live without?
Bro: All of it. Helmet, Lifejacket, Boat, Paddle, all pretty important. For winter kayaking you need a lot of gear. My favorite piece of a equipment that I have is my paddle-full carbon fibre, zero degree feather and a neutral bent shaft. Really comfortable and super light, it makes it easy to get around.
Kelseydo: Have you ever lost your paddle?
Bro: I never let go of my paddle. My buddy let go of his paddle, and guess who had to go after it. It was only once, and I told him if you ever let go of that paddle again I’m going to beat the shit out of you…Anyways, next question.
Kelseydo: Sounds like an ordeal. So what tricks are you working on right now?
Bro:I’m working on my left-side cartwheel which sucks at the moment but I can do two sets in a row. I’m also working on my helix which is like an upside down 360. When you see it in person it looks completely different from what you expect it to be.
Kelseydo: If you could go anywhere in the world for white water where would you go?
Bro: Probably; Ottawa, New Zealand, Colorado. I don’t really want to go to like, the Nile, there are some big and nasty rivers out there. I would rather go to a place where there’s a nice wave, and just surf that all day.
Sounds good Dyl!