Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Roll Over, Roll Over!

Today, I finished the second day of my kid’s kayak class. I made some accomplishments and definitely improved!  After some brief practice in the pool, my class headed for the river!

During the day, Lillian, James, Matt (our instructor), and I undertook the great Mangles river twice.  I slipped into my boat on the rocky shore excited to see and feel a new river.  It felt great to be on the water again after so long and so many new experiences.  The rapids varied from grade one (a small riffle) to grade two (big waves, no consequence and minor rocks.)  We splashed around enjoying every wave of every rapid, but not without a good celebration in every calm eddy.  The last rapid of the run was a little bigger, but with big strokes and great speed we were all able to push right on through.  In a small pool by the take-out, the three of us took time to practice our roll with Matt holding and guiding the stern of our boat.  We were surprised at the speed, confidence, and effortlessness of our attempts.  The pool sessions had helped us a great deal and it was showing! 

On the second run of the day we all surged with confidence.  With alacrity and speed we boated to the beach where we took out earlier.  Matt told us that today we were going down a wee bit further before finishing.  At the end of the next rapid, Lillian and I asked Matt if we could try doing the roll without his guidance.  With a mighty brain freeze, and careful paddle placement we were breathing on the surface.  We had learned the sweep roll!  Soon, we came upon a rapid that looked as if it had a huge drop near the top.  We asked Matt if the rapid was harder than anything we had done.  With a look of reluctance he said “No, the worst is behind us.”  It was a drop.  James and Lillian went in first and they both made it.  I hit a lateral at the bottom of the drop and flipped.  I could not find my paddle to roll, so I had to swim.  Soon, I was being pulled to shore by Matt and was back in my boat.  After a couple more rapids, Lillian and I succeeded in rolling in flowing current!  I think James will get his roll tomorrow.  Before we knew it, we were spared of our dripping clothes and back in warm, cozy camp.  I was super excited at my completion of the sweep roll. 

Tomorrow, James, Lillian, Matt, and I are going on a camping trip.  We will kayak for two days straight.  I am not sure if you will hear from me tomorrow night.  I am excited for more tips and to improve my white water skill!           

Thank you for reading Rohan Geographic!


  1. Rohan - How great that you are taking a class and have some other kids to run with! Say hi to Matt for me as I think he is the same Matt who has worked for us at OB! Have a blast paddling and say hello to everyone! cheers p

  2. What fun you are having! I love reading about your kayaking experiences.
    Nice that you have a couple of people your one age to hang with. Where are they from? Are their parents at the school also?
    Grandma Doris

  3. No quip from Andrew re "rolling rolling rolling...."??????

  4. You watch your seals in New Zealand while I watch mine in Monterey. We just returned from California where I saw your Uncle David and your cousins Kalia and Devin. While down in California, we treated ourselves to two days in Monterey, including two visits to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. On our last drive along the beach, a seal came swimming toward us, maybe to check us out. He, or she, did not ask where Rohan was, so I did not have to hurt her feelings by saying you preferred New Zealand seals. Happy New Year and Love, Grandpa Morgan

  5. Thanks for all your comments. James and Lillian are both Aussies and their parents were both in courses. Andrew: I expect the song soon...(Rolling Rolling Rolling......)

    I do not know if it is the same Matt but I will definitely ask!