Thursday, October 12, 2006

Wave Monkey

Well i just wrote a bit of a story about my travels and gave it to the kind people at Wave Monkey to put on their website. For those that don't know Wave Monkey is a new Australian company bring in a few brands and alos designing some new gear to. Wirth checking out. The link is http://www.wavemonkey.com.au/catalog/news_tr.php So if your sitting in your office it with nothing better to do have a read. Cheers Colin

Monday, October 02, 2006

Tazzy Boys still in Norway

Just a quick post on what I have been up to lately. Been living and hanging out with my friend Jussi now for a couple of months here and hiting up a few rivers with him to. Lately we have been doing rivers such as the roster section of the lagan, some deep gorge near oppdal, heaps of runs down amot and my new favourite the tora slides. Here are just a few pictures from the trips we've been doing.

Me heading down the last slide of the Tora

Local paddler Matin on the first drop we did on Tora
Jussi running the waterfal of Rosten
Me hard at work safety boating on the Amot

Now things are starting to cool down here, the rafting season has just ended and the rivers are getting to low so its time to head back to Australia for another summer of fun at Penrith. But before we leave here theres still a few more missions we have to do. The full story will soon be at wavemonkey.com.au
happy boatin, cheers Colin

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

tazzy boy in norway

well after a season of fun in iceland i dicided to head to norway well i was in this part of world. i met up with a friend of mine called jussi, his working on the sjoa river and is also a keen kayaker. so i turned up got myself a boat and a new helmet and i was ready to go. in the first couple of days we managed to do a few different river, the amot section on the sjoa, the rosten canyon on the lagen, the tundra and the ula. all are realy sweet river and have some good stuff on them. well that all for now, here are a few pics, if you want to see more go to www.loungekayaker.com.au
cheers colin furmston

jussi on a wave on the sjoa river

the first slide on the rosten canyon

the first waterfall on the ulathe drop of the end of the ula slides

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

tazzy boys in iceland

summer ended in oz so i dicided it was time to pack my bags and head to the northern part of the world to enjoy the northern summer, think i might have gone a bit to far! iceland was here i ended up after a friend of mine said they where looking for a safety boater/raft guide. so after a 40 trip to get here, not being able to bring my kayak and losing all my shit i made it to a cold wet iceland. i headed up north the next day after my stuff caught up to me, the rafting base is situated in the middle of Skagafjörður in the north of iceland.

here i have spent the past 3 months working my arse of, rafting on on the easy west river, safety kayaking on the grade 4 east river and even occationally guiding on the east. kayaking on the east most days has been heaps of fun, coping a few beats at the hand of the green room and swimming out from under rafts twice but still heaps of fun.

i have also manange to do a bit of rec kayaking here to, found a sweet first decent in the valley to do. had 4 runnable drops in it, first 3 where sweet (which included a nice 25 footer) but the last one got the better of my. had to boof out of a node but slipt to the left of it and found a rock ledge about half way down the 6 meter drop.

had a bit a sore back for the next few days but that was all sweet. also made a trip over to a waterfall called godafoss with a kiwi called maps, its a nice 13m waterfall. pretty easy, just fall over the edge and try to not land flat which both of us successed in doing.

well its of to norway now to hang out there for a few months, hopefully there should be some sweet stuff to do the and maybe even find some work! adrian is busy over in canada, spend time in bc. well thats all for now, catch ya all later, colin furmston

also there are pics of the rafting at www.rafting.is

Thursday, October 20, 2005

The Little Fisher

The Lea race weekend as everyone in canoeing world knows was a wet one with race day being put back to Sunday. Saturday when the race was supposed to be run was devoted to river trips on the Iris, Mersey, upper Lea and in our case the Little Fisher.
Our group consisted of two unknown locals along with Dave the computer wiz from Flinders Island and Chris from Hobart.
As none of us had ever seen the river before we sought out some info from those who had. The word was to expect a fairly steep river grading 3+. Someone told us it would take about one and a half hours, but have since denied it. It in fact took about three and a half hours.
Anyway we made our way to the start via Dublin rd, which runs off the Mersey rd alongside Lake Rowallan after leaving a car at the get out spot on lake Parangana. The get in is at a bridge over the river and the river here is pretty indicative of what the rest of the river is like between major rapids, steep and rocky. We had a very inauspicious start with one of our members getting stuck on a log under the bridge and swimming whilst his boat raced of down the river on its own (no it wasn’t one of the ‘locals’)
Fortunately it pinned itself on a log not far down so boat and paddler were soon reunited. Just below here unknown local Blakey peeled off into an eddy and looking at me with a concerned look on his face asked if this is where we get out. Looking downstream I couldn’t see any obvious obstacles so I said, “no let’s keep going”. Turns out what he meant was, let’s walk out now while we still can. I always was slow on the uptake so when the wisdom of Blakey finally hit me it was too late.
Actually after the initial stutter under the bridge everyone managed just fine, apart from the odd pinning here and there and one tree hugging incident in which Chris saved my sorry hide from a sure fire dunking. The river is continuously steep and gets steeper along the way. The best rapids are after the half way mark and would be nudging grade 4. Some are very tight and technical. One particular rapid saw 3 out of 4 of our crew ending up broached on some boulder or other. Another feature of the river is the logs in it. Although not overly bad, there is enough to keep you on your toes. With the river being so steep and continuous, some rapids ended up being shot blind by our trusty probe Blakey, that’s were the logs became a bit of a worry.
As it was, all the good rapids were clear including one, which went into a cave. The cave was just a big eddy, but paddling out took a bit of effort.
After about 3 hours we reached the Fisher River just below the power station. It was pretty damned high and so gave us a great roller coaster ride trying to avoid some largish holes down to Lake Parangana.
All up a great day out and we even made it back for the meal at Weindorfers with 5 minutes to spare.
Ian S

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

trip report

Weekend 21-22 of August
Crew: Marcus Morse, Sean ‘Tanky’ Clement, Anna Fairly, Craig ‘Swarz’ Chivers, Adrian Kiernan, Colin Furmston, Tom Griggs, Adam ‘Dicko’ Dickenson and Marc Benis.

Saturday
We started early, meeting at Adrian’s at 7am then around to Marcus’s to meet up with the other guys. So 6 of us drove up north with the plan of doing either the Lake River or the Nile. Adrian and I meet up with the other vehicle at Campbelltown to discuss plans, Swarz had been talking to Marc and it sound like the Nile was the better option. Swarz got some brief directions of Marc and Morsey scribed them down onto a piece of scrap paper, we where set. Also at this point Tom and Marc (both from Lonnie) got sick of waiting and decided to start the river with out us.

Tom Griggs boofing a small drop (photo: Craig Chivers)


So we drove along little winding dirt roads until we came to a causeway, the take out of the Nile, satisfied with the level we headed up to the put in. We found Tom’s car and parked there got changed and were off, the only problem was finding the put in. There was an old road that followed the river which we where supposed to follow, but for how long none of us knew as we where all virgins to this run. We got to a point on the track where it started to leave the river so we decide to head bush down to the river. Later we found out that this was a mistake because if you were to keep following the road it rejoins the river. This extra walks adds about 1.5 hours of good stuff on to the trip, ah well next time. So we started paddling down, minus Anna as she opted to be shuttle bunny, the Nile’s steep rocky river bed. It became clear to us that this was a prime level for the river, enough to cover all the rocks but still not to pushy. As we entered the first gorge it became apparent that this was going to be a great run.

Marcus styling it, in his boat this time! (photo: Craig Chivers)


The first rapids started pretty gently, a few nice grade 3’s to get wormed up on, then things started to get a bit harder. One of the bigger rapids involved ducking under a log at the top of the drop, boofing right to avoid a surf in a hole and then the negotiation of a tight bolder garden with a few hole in it. Morsey and I got through under the log fine, one of the benefits of being a midget, but then Adrian found he didn’t fit. So he went the roll and it went slightly pear shaped from there. But he still came out the bottom fine thanks to the abilities of his new boat, Fluid Solo, rather then his ability (just messing).

Further on down we came across a rapid that consisted of a few shoots with a few holes in them. Swarz went first, followed by Morsey then every one else came in behind. On the last of the shoots Morsey found his forward momentum halted by a hole, after a bit of rodeo action he decided that swimming was a good option. The only problem with swimming was A. swimming out of the hole with getting run down by the other kayakers coming through and B. swimming in front of all your mates.

Adrian enjoying his new boat (photo: Craig Chivers)


After more continuos fun grade 3/4 rapids we caught up with Tom and Marc as they where scouting a drops. After that we bombed down through some more great 3/4 rapids occasionally interrupted by a bigger rapid that required scouting. After about 3.5 hours we reached the end of the run, happy with our efforts we drunk a beer and went looking for some accommodations for the night.

Adrian and I rang a local Lonnie Paddler, Dicko, to see if we could stay there. Thankfully he said yes so the bivvy bag could stay dry another night as we where welcomed with nice beds and heater to dry our gear in front of. I rang Swarz to discuss the plans for tomorrow and to see if they had found any where to stay. It turns out they had driven to Devonport in anticipation of doing the Leven Canyon the next day but the people they had planned to stay with where not home. They where reduce to sleeping in a carport and 2 of them had forgotten sleeping bags.

Colin just after ducking under the log (photo: Craig Chivers)


Adrian and I went a check out Cataract Gorge for the next day. We found the river to be at a prime level. So we went to the pub, had dinner and went back to Dicko’s for a good night sleep.

Sunday
Woke early to go and check on the level of Cataract, one of the advantages of the river being in the middle of town, we found the river to be even higher then the day before. This was a surprise as we had expected the river to drop. It was now flowing at a bit under 3000cfs. We called in Tom and the four of us where ready, Adrian, Dicko Tom and I.

Adrian was super pumped as well as having a little brown undies action at the same time as this was his first full run of the gorge. The rest of us where pretty darn happy, finally a good level cataract trip, and the first for me this year.

The first rapid went without incident except me ending up of the wrong side of the river to dodge a hole but still got through fine much to Tom’s disappointment. We then arrived at the play wave. I was the only one in a play boat so we did not stay there long. Then it off down 3 fingers (think that’s what it is called!), some nice big waves, holes and one big rock that Tom decided to give a bit of a hug. Apart from that, things where going fine.

The next rapid is called Arse Rap (someone once swam and loss the butt out of their shorts), easy left to right move with a few holes to skirt around. Adrian almost found his way into one of these holes due to Dicko’s immaculate directions, but quick thinking and a fast boat soon got him out of trouble. At the bottom of the rapid there is a ski jump, if you hit it right there is some good air to be had, all good clean fun.

Then down to Duck Reach the start of the Teva Cataract Extreme Race which was held in January this year although it was a bit lower then. We got down there fine, all the way down until the Plateau Rapid. Its got a big hole in the middle that you have to get far left to get round, its always a good trap for newbies. Adrian came on down and sure enough heading straight for the hole, but thanks to the rather large boat he was paddling he got up enough speed to punch through the monster. One more rapid then we where down in the Tamar (the finish), this rapid is called the Slalom Rapid, named after the 1992 slalom world cup held there. Those that where there would testify to this being one mean rapid but once it gets a bit of water going down it become just a few wave trains with one or two holes on either side to catch any wayward paddler. Everyone got through fine except for me, spent a bit of time upside down counting fish but came out the bottom fine.
(sorry no photos of Cataract as it is all stuck on dicko's camera.)
Satisfied with our effort we headed back to Dicko’s to check out the footage from the day. Dicko has been filming a bit lately with the plan to bring out a new video about Tazzy paddling, X-Tas has been around for to long. It is time to give people a fresh look at Tazzy boating.

Well that was a fun weekend, no one hurt themselves except for Marcus’s ego but that will grow back. Next weekend it’s off to Bradies Lake Slalom course for the Annual Back to Bronte weekend, the birth place of the ball race.
Cheers and hope the paddling is good where you are, Colin Furmston

Monday, September 05, 2005

best weekend ever!

Here are a few pics from the weekends action which included a high level trip down the Alum Cliff section of the Mersey River. A second decent of the Wilmont Gorge then a lower Nile trip. To end things off we played on a massive wave on Cataract Gorge.


Adrian surfing a nice wave on the Mersey RiverMullet shooting a rapid on the Wilmont Gorge
Harry bombing down a drop on the Wilmont
Adrian boofing a small drop on the Nile River

Colin surfing the monster on Cataract Gorge

Mullet showing that you only need one blade


Adrian in the meat

The full story is coming soon so stay turned, cheers Colin Furmston