Saturday Morning, race day, we rose early, and Katie helped by dropping us and our gear off in Kenduskeag, and leaving the Mazda in Bangor. While we weren't perfectly prepared, we are getting our bearings on what is essential and what is helpful for this race. We scoped Six Mile Falls ahead of time, and met a wiseman who gave us some tips and introduced us to the terms "rooster tail" for standing waves of a rapid, and "hey diddle diddle" (straight down the middle). This year it's Tim's turn astern.
We were boat 373. Boats launch five at a time, by number every minute starting at 8:30am. The first ~10 miles or so are pretty harmless flat water. A good time to catch up. Then came the dreaded and celebrated Six Mile Falls (photos can be seen in hi-def at Whittling Fog Photography Camera One and Camera Two).
We came in river right, and through the channel, just as planned, bear and stitch hats proudly donned.
We aim for the rooster tail.
But, we seem ready for what's next.
However, at the bottom end, we take on too much water, as Todd is notes. Not clear what the sterns-man is trying to signal.
On reflection, we surmised that we had too much of our brawn, and weight, in the bow. Todd weighs nearly 40 pounds more than I, and it's all solid pounds. Upon considering this, we took to having Todd lean back as we crested the next few rapids, which worked well. Then came Shopping Cart, the killer of the 2013 attempt.
Shopping Cart has some big standing waves.
Todd deploys our new strategy right as we sink the big one.
In truth there was more than a little magic to our passing of shopping cart, and a lot of chance involved in lots of parts of that race. But, oh, what a nice way to break in the spring!
Notes for next year (2018):
- cover the bow
- light guy in front, power in the rear
- less food/clothing
- don't change until much closer
- double car drop off worked well
- give bowman more steering authority from the get-go
- camelbak for the sternsman
- no water jugs
- one dry bag
- fruit or packaged food only, no tupperware, etc
- hand wear or pogie
- warm hat, sun hat, show hat
- sweater, dry layer
- lighter, shorter boat?
- air bags, big blocks of styrofoam or blue board? legal?
- better fitting wet suit for TW?