What do you consider a personal first descent?

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What do you consider a personal first descent?

Postby gutie » Wed Jul 30, 2014 6:52 pm

Depending on who you talk to, opinions on what is considered a personal first descent of a river can vary.

What are your thoughts?

Do you have to kayak a certain percentage of the total length of the run?

Do you have to kayak a certain percentage of the harder rapids on the river? (think walking sections in the Narrows, Five Falls, not going past the forest service bridge on the Cheoah).

Does it matter if you swim all or many of the rapids because you went in over your ability level on a river?

Is the only thing that matters is that you tried to run a new river and dry hair or swims, you made (hopefully good) decisions to run or not run certain rapids.

I kayak for fun, so regardless of whether or not I decide to run something, it doesn't matter to me. I'm just curious to see what people's thoughts and opinions are on this topic.
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Re: What do you consider a personal first descent?

Postby Huckster » Wed Jul 30, 2014 8:40 pm

This is my opinion and that is all:

I think that the majority of the rapids should be run or if there is a viable "sneak" then by all means take advantage. There is a line that needs to be drawn at which point it becomes a hiking trip with a kayak.

You can claim whatever you want but you know to what extent you ran that run. I think to be classified as a personal first d you should complete the entire run as it commonly considered.

I think it all draws back to stepping up at an appropriate rate and not getting on a run over your head for the sake of saying that you ran said section.

More importantly it is about having fun and pushing your abilities to your comfort level and not putting others at risk while doing it.
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Re: What do you consider a personal first descent?

Postby slkrab95 » Thu Jul 31, 2014 12:44 pm

Second most of what Huckster said. Sneak here walk one here... then I say count it, but if you walk enough to change the entire rating of your run or character then I say no... For example walking all of five falls..... if you do that then you ran Chattooga 3.75 as it's called by some then hiked five falls... but I wouldn't say you paddled Section 4 even if you are still taking out at the lake. If someone took out at the bridge on Cheoah I would say they PFD'd Cheoah lite not the cheoah run that is recognized by boaters all over the southeast.
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Re: What do you consider a personal first descent?

Postby bigtime » Thu Jul 31, 2014 3:22 pm

Good points (if you're into the whole PFD thing). Prime example is the Green. There are lots of folks who run the Green but don't run Gorilla. Even some that do don't all the time. Thus the Green Lite.

If you swim most of the rapids then you might say you got a personal first descent, but you might also say that a personal first descent got you, or that you tried and got your ass handed to you.

There are plenty of true "first descents" of a river where not every rapid is run.
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Re: What do you consider a personal first descent?

Postby blokhead » Tue Aug 05, 2014 9:29 am

making it to the end of the run in the general vicinity of your boat. :D:

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