Back in 2003, I was on pace to hit about 70 days on the river in a whitewater kayak. That June alone, I was planning on spending 17 of the 30 days of the month either creeking or in a playboat clinic.
A funny thing happened, though, on my way to the St. Francis River take out on Memorial Day that year. While playing in a pour-over not 200 yards from my car, I tore my rotator cuff. (Or, at least that's all I thought had happened.) After over six months of pain, three doctors, eventual surgery for impingement syndrome and then three months of recovery, I came out of my "non-boating" period in 2004 with a completely different life: went in single, came out married; had a different job with Alpine Shop, a new house and a completely different lifestyle. The closest I would get to 70 days on the river was a five day trip I took in October of 2004. Chalk it up to the rigors of family life - and the incredibly hard transition involved with caring for our disabled daughter who arrived in 2005.
So, why the long back story? Because 2010 is the year it looks like I'm getting back on the river. Alpine Shop just got in its first shipment of demo boats from Jackson Kayaks and we're getting everything together for our first demo days in February down on the St. Francis River.
Here's a few shots of the new 2010 boats:
2010 Jackson Fun (L: 6'5", W: 25.2625", weight range: 135-180 lbs.
Then there's the 2010 All-Star:
(L: 5'10", W: 25-3/4" weight range: 130-200 lbs.)
And here's a great shot of the length and volume differences between the 2010 Superstar (on top) and the '10 2 Fun on the bottom. The Superstar is for paddlers between 160 to 230 lbs and is a half inch shorter than the 2 Fun (below) which is for paddlers between 110 and 155 lbs.
Demo Days begin on Saturday, February 13. See you then!