The Pull

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bdk
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The Pull

Postby bdk » Mon Apr 18, 2016 7:34 pm

Some random thoughts that i wrote down in my journal about my day at Lava.


Lava day. The day that says it all. The day you find out what kind of boatman you are. We started this journey nearly two weeks and 180 miles ago. It is this day that we put everything we have learned as boatmen to the ultimate test. Will I make to the bottom? How will my fellow boatsman do? How close to the Ledge Hole should I get? How about the V-Wave? These thoughts and more will race through my mind all day.
The day before I mentioned to Nik that a change of plans would cool for the next day. We were supposed to leave Tuckup in the morning and head to Honga Springs for the night. Instead I proposed that we skip Honga and run Lava Falls in the afternoon. Thus, setting us up a sweet night of camping at Tequila Beach. He was game!
Word spread this morning that we were going to push lava up to this afternoon instead of the following morning. Not going to lie, I was pretty fired up about the decision. If the there is one thing that gets me going, it’s running big rapids. Lava fits the bill and will feed my appetite for big water. The tone of the group changed almost instantly. In the morning we are usually a little rowdy and exited about the day ahead. Today, it’s a little quieter. Two of us know what lays downstream but for the rest of the group, it’s a whole new ball game. Lava is a force to be reckoned with. I can see the boatsman taking the extra time to make sure their rig is ready for the big day. Doubling down with straps on everything. I can hear the pump blowing air into a chamber. Making the boat tight so it’ll track straight. Finally double-checking everything on the boat to make sure it is in the proper place. Right before we pushed off for the day ahead, I noticed that most of the riders had already donned their dry suits. Little did they know that Lava was 15 flat miles downstream.
For once we didn’t have head wind holding us back. Not going to lie, I was pretty happy about that. We were able to make quick work of the 15 miles and even squeezed in a pretty quite lunch stop. Almost time.
The pull. There are places on rivers where you can just calmly float around without a care in the world. If you want to have a chat with your crew, chat away. If you want to gaze at the massive walls that are surrounding in this magnificent place, gaze away. Eventually these calm pools come to an end and the game changes. When the pool ends, the pull begins. The pull happens when you cross this line of no turning back. Its tough to describe this feeling. For some, when the feeling of the pull comes about, they tense up and get scared. Others excel when it overcomes them. I live for this feeling. Everyday I seek out the pull. The Canyon is one of the greatest place on Earth to experience this feeling. Today the pull is courtesy of Lava Falls. We float the mile long pool with a little conversation and a few quite moments. It is during these quite moments that I go over my line. As we keep moving downstream I see that all our fellow compadres have scrambled up the hillside for a look see. I quickly ask myself “Should we go for a look as well?” My glance returns to downstream anticipating what I what I long for. I can feel a slight smile start to come across my face as that all to familiar feeling starts to take over. There it is. The pull.
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blokhead
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Re: The Pull

Postby blokhead » Fri Apr 22, 2016 8:38 am

Nice read. Made me Youtube what Lava Falls is.
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bigtime
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Location: Lexington, SC

Re: The Pull

Postby bigtime » Sun Apr 24, 2016 9:50 am

Very nice, Andy. It's a physical, mental, and even soulful pull, eh? The thing I've always loved about big rapids, is that you are truly living in the moment. You're not thinking about that bill you have to pay next week, work, or anything else. You go into a "survival mode" state of mind. Waiting to rise to the top of the next wave to make your read and start moving where you want to go. Sometimes even wondering "should I wave wheel this, or is there a big hole behind it". I was just telling my mom yesterday about the video and photos you posted. Would love to have that opportunity one day. See y'all on the river soon.
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bdk
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Re: The Pull

Postby bdk » Wed Apr 27, 2016 6:44 pm

Thanks fellas! That deep ditch will make you think. Big rapids is what keeps us coming back time and time again.

Blok, did you see any of the lava videos where the rafts got completely ripped apart in the ledge hole?
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blokhead
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Re: The Pull

Postby blokhead » Thu Apr 28, 2016 2:01 pm

I saw quite a lot of carnage, but I don't think I saw that. I'll google it.

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