Tuesday, May 27, 2014

A Spring Run Down the Red Deer River

Put- in - Fort Normandeau
 This year, I am approaching my road travel very differently from the previous 9 years and it involves travelling with our toys ie. boats and bikes.

My body is demanding a different kind of pace and it's been wonderful.  This past Sunday I had the opportunity to get onto the Red Deer River in Central Alberta for a very fast and beautiful run (re: flood waters) from Fort Normandeau to MacKenzie Trails, in the heart of the city of Red Deer with Mark and my cousin, Jarret.

The sign at the put-in was awesome (see to the right). 

Historical Site
Fort Normandeau is a National Historic site and because of its shallows and low sloping banks allowed, historical, buffalo herds to cross here as well as First Nations peoples   It also makes for an great put in.  Special thanks, to Fort Normandeau Historian, Peter Allen for some additional river info. As well as the crew at Valhalla Pure Outfitters in Red Deer (our local Kokatat and Werner Paddles dealer).

Local knowledge is always important to access before venturing out on a river that is not known to you. 

Put-in, Nikki and Jarret
Mark taking our Hurricane Kayak, Excursion 128 through the paces.

Mark and Jarret
This was also a great opportunity to get into some of our demo boats primarily our Excursion 128 by Hurricane Kayaks and the Jackson Kayak, Karma Unlimited/RG.  While the Karma Unlimited/RG was not in its ideal waters (think whitewater creeking or ocean play/rock gardening) we were reminded of the unmatched outfitting by Jackson Kayak and the speed of the Karma.

We were very impressed with the Excursion 128, at home, in the Hybrid Touring category (Day touring quiet coastal waters and larger lakes).  This boat was lightweight and beautiful looking and it performed well with excellent tracking, stability and speed.  It was maneauverable even in a strong current, I could eddy in and out easily.  The outfitting was solid (loved the thigh braces for edging) and very comfortable with the AireStream Seat.  Watch the Hurrican Excursion video HERE.

Thanks to Kokatat for our super comfortable, Maximus Prime, Maximus and Aries PFD's.  Contact your local dealer today to try one on .  We used the following Werner Paddles: Premium Performance - Camano, Premium Performance - Shuna and the Standard Performance - best selling, Skagit.

"a bad day on the water is better than a good day at work" and lucky for us it was a FANTASTIC day on the water!

Green River, UT

Green River, UT
Photo: Shawna Franklin