Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Packrafting is real boating

Ok. if you have a packraft, then please send this video to your friends

It's Luc Mehl's take on our SE trip and while it cuts out the bloops (for those see Timmy J's take on the same trip:

What it shows is the beauty of packrafts on steep creeks. That the two (packrafts+steep creeks) can be one. That a hardshell is not the only way, that packrafting big gradient is not just a stunt -- like Paul Schauer points out -- but a possibility, a probability in the remote waters left un-run.

For me, I need to learn what the packrafts can do locally before taking them remotely. Like a climber or a skier at the local crags or slopes before they hit an expedition. For Luc and Tim they are adventure, discovering the unknown and pushing the improbable.

I'd be lying if I said that Tim always knows how the packraft will perform. In fact, if Tim knew, he'd not be paddling one.

So anyway, let's get Luc's video to 2500 hits by the end of the week. Tim looks so good boofing and bracing. It's art in slo-mo and quilted Alpackas.

If you have an account on Mountain Buzz or Boater Talk, then post it.

If you subscribe to Playak then send it to Playak. If you have friends who boat, send it to them.

It doesn't matter if you'll only run Class II with a bike, a dog, or a lunch bag on your bow. This legitimizes packrafting as a whitewater-worthy craft.

The vids are too beautiful, too informative not to go big.


  1. My boyfriend and I love your videos/blog and have been talking pack rafts up here in Oregon even though we haven't bought them yet... as a long distance backpacker dating a boater, it is the perfect combination. It's totally legit!

  2. Roman- What camera do you use for out of boat shots? What does Luc use? They look great.
    I have not had great luck with my Gopro because you need to be extremely close.

    I will be posting vid link in my classroom tomorrow for the future boaters to see.

    1. John, Luc uses a Canon, a 7D, I think. He carries it in a watershed bag. I carry a Panasonic GH 1 with a 14-140 mm zoom in a pelican case. I also use a Go Pro. Sort of miss the old days of the Optio W60. The big camera is good and feature rich, but heavy and requires I get out and set up. The hard case needs attention or it puts holes in my boat. Timmy has a nice HD waterproof Sanyo. The Horsepasture worked best when Luc shot beauty with is Canon, Timmy shot the inbetween with his Sanyo, and I just blubbered along with the Go Pro for POV.

      I think the sanyo is the best tradeoff.

  3. Hey Renee, where are you in Oregon? I just got one and am looking for paddling buddies. That is, as soon as you guys get your boats...

  4. We are in Bend. I'm not quite the waterfall running type... but Kirk on the other hand is panning some serious boating. you?

  5. Stop preaching to us--we get it!

    Words are cheap, but the poetry in yours, Luc's, Timmy's vids is priceless. More please.

  6. This is unlike anything I have ever seen before! Amazing!!


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