2013 New Years Day Sandy River Float

January 01, 2013 at 10:00 AM

2013 New Year’s Day Float

Submitted by Cheri Holman

With temperatures below freezing and an east wind to make it even colder, OWA’s New Year’s Day Float got us whitewater enthusiasts off to a frigid start for 2013. We put in at Dodge park to lower water levels than usual (1,600 cfs), for the time of year, making the trip a little less rambuctious but far more technical. As we approached a difficult, narrow passageway between two rocks, Val's precision guiding mitigated the risks and we easily move through the rock and the hard spot without getting pinned or flipped. Thanks Val it was way too cold for a swim. 

Scott Ogren powered a raft with paraplegic, Kelly Tadlock and her friend Matthew. It wasn't Kelly's first trip on the water, but it was by far, her coldest. 

Riding in Val Shaull’s raft was Salina Norton, DAV’s Service Officer. She is next in line as Chapter #1’s Commander. After experiencing the fun and adventure of rafting in really cold temperatures, she is ready to incorporate whitewater rafting and camping trips into the Veteran's recreational program.

Taking the helm was Kay Sutherland, who could paddle the Grand Canyon if she had to. Since there were only three of us ladies in the raft, I greatly appreciated her strength and leadership. Kay is best friend's with Val's wife, Linda. Not content to leave Kay sitting and quilting, Val invited Kay for some whitewater action and this is what Kay has to say,

"Val is the best. I would not have found out what a blast white water rafting was without him. He started taking me a year ago. Can't wait to go again."

Two weeks prior to the New Year's Day Float, Val scouted the river, spotting a dangerous tree that blocked 3/4 of the way. Luckily, high waters washed out the strainer. A big thank you to Val Shaull for taking the time to look out for everyone's welfare.

Waiting for us, at the take out in Oxbo park, was DAV's, Don Smith and his outrageous Pulled Pork. Wow. Many other delicious contributions were enjoyed by the fire due to shivering, freezing cold airs. A heartfelt thanks to everyone who contributed to Disabled American Veterans, raising $233.00.

2013 is looking to be a great year for whitewater sports! 

Tags: Sandy River New Years Day
Category: Trip Report

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