|Me blasting through sticky hole during the race. Photo by Beth McVay.|
Once the trip got into full swing, we had our usual share of maladies, like some illness from drinking river water while taking swims or getting worked, and a minor knee injury that kept me off any runs requiring a hike for a week or so. The only run I knew of with no hiking was Roadside, so I spent a lot of time there, which paid off with a fifth place finish at the Alseseca Race. Natalie was the second fastest woman, which put her in the middle of the pack of guys. The fastest woman was Sandra Hyslop, who was just one second behind me for a 6th overall finish. I was very impressed by that. Also of note was Wyatt Hyndman in fourth place. There was the pack of top three paddlers right around 10 minutes (Dane, Nick, EJ), and then a little pack at about ten and a half minutes, and Wyatt was the fastest of that pack. I felt pretty fast, and was impressed Wyatt beat me by 2 seconds. I can't believe Dane beat me by more than 30 seconds, especially since our split times for the first section of the course were 5:55 and 6:00, meaning that he pulled 30 seconds ahead in the remaining 4 minutes.
Here's a video that Nate and Heather Herbeck put together about the race, which features an awesome amount of footage of us, and some of Natalie's interview.
We also took a great trip to the Pimiento section of the Filobobos, with a huge crew of cool peeps. The Pimiento is a 20 mile wilderness run, with the first 6 miles or so some pretty rocking class 5. You have to get up before dawn and make a 3 hour drive down a sketchy road into the canyon to put in, then paddle a pretty long way in a remote and nearly inescapable canyon. We definitely had a share of embarrassing lines, some breaks in the chain of beta, and a few personality rubs, but overall it was a really fun trip, well worth doing.
|The road into Pimiento.|
|In the gorgeous gorges.|
|The one waterfall on the Pimiento.|
Apart from that, we spent most of our time on the various runs on the Alseseca that weren't too high: Roadside,Upper Jalisingo, Big Banana, and a run or two of the Truchas waterfall. While I was doing disgusting things to the bathroom at Aventurec, Natalie took a quick trip to the Rio d'Oro down south, but the water was too high to run the main drops. We had a lot of rainy weather and cold weather, so we didn't always shoot, but here are a couple of our favorite photos, with a slideshow of more at the bottom of the page.
|Roadside putin, day 1.|
|Crashing while trying to freewheel|
|Roadside photo day|
|Stellar safety during the race|
|Jake back in action on roadside|
|Photo by Dan Rubado|
|Dan Rubado himself|
|Beth McSlay, killin it.|
|Roadside putin drop|
|Sometimes the fog was cool.|
|One of my favorite shots from Roadside|
|Typical flotsam and jetsam in the Alseseca|
|A cool drop in Pezma section, which is the runout of Big Banana section.|
|One of our best shots from the trip. Sideofries, who called me "Spleif" throughout the trip.|
|Rappelling into Truchas|
|Todd on Truchas|
|Leif on Truchas|
|Mic swam between drops (Natalie roped him out before the main falls) and his boat ran Truchas without him, necessitating a more intense portage.|
|Until next time!|