Thank R. Pruden, Not Me

Posted by Kurt Maurer on Mar 24, 2005

Our Mister Robert N. Pruden once published a story whereas he took his wood kayak into a Class 18 rapids (hey, after class 6 rapids, who cares what it really was?), unintentionally mind you, had the boat turned into mincemeat, and barely escaped with his own life, verily. His hair-raising tale was ringing in my ears when Leslie and I took on the Rogue River in SW Oregon the summer before last... with the blessings of two seperate river outfitters who actually looked our boats over.

The adventure quickly became a high fright to us both, although we were already pretty experienced river yakers by that time. Our boats received quite a terrific bashing on river boulders, to the extent that we both, independantly of each other, became convinced that they were being literally bashed apart on us! (Kudos to CLC -- our MC13s took it with absolute grace, and require NO repairs! Just absolutely amazing!!)

The first rapids got our undivided attention; the second thoroughly alarmed us without reserve; and the third was merely an endurdance trial of true terror until we managed to get the hell out of the river, together, and abort the mission.

Astonishing in retrospect, once we were safely ashore we debated as to whether or not we ought to press on! Why not? After all, two different local outfitters opined we could manage it okay. Maybe we had already seen the worst?

But the R. N. Pruden story rang too loudly in our ears, and caused me to make a firm desicion: ABORT. We hitched a ride back to town with a rancher... etc, etc... What a hassle...

The next day we rented a raft, and made the run we had meant to enjoy in our wooden yaks. Had we *really* seen the worst of it? HAH!! Not by a LONG SHOT!!!

Suffice it to say that we had such a wonderful exciting pleasurable BLAST in the raft that I was no longer inclined to hunt down those goddamned river outfitters and beat the shit out of them to get their attention. But I regret that I didn't inform them of what transpired either. Oh well. Water under the bridge, as they say.

But the point of this story is, good ol' Robbo passed on his experience, and Leslie and I ever agree that it saved us some real misery of our own. And so I pass on my experience to you, and hope you do likewise.

Cheers, Kurt

In Response to: Re: Sea Skills vs Judgeme by Paul on Mar 24, 2005