Sunday, May 25, 2008

Safety Practice

Today was the annual RIC/KA safety practice. It is usually a great experience and a fun way to practice the skills you never want to need.
This year, however, was a little different. TM usually leads the session from the water and is an active participant. Sadly, he had a landscaping lumbar incident and was sidelined. Instead of directing things from the water, he was attempting to direct things from the safety of shore.
At first, I was unsure how this was going to work out. I think TM was uncertain also. Unsurprisingly, it went very well. TM had us run through the typical rescues using other paddlers as dummies. We did the traditional T-rescue, demoed an all in rescue, and practiced towing.
For boat control, TM had us practice edging by using a few different drills. My favorite is to lean the boat on edge and practice circling using just sweep strokes and using the return as a low brace.
After the formal practice a few of us headed out through the breach way to see what was happening on the ocean. It was pretty tame, but we did manage to find a few rocks to dodge. We also found some opportunities to roll.
When we reentered the breach way the current was beginning to run. I played for a little bit, but it was late. People wanted to head to the post-paddle pot luck.
CR hosted another fantastic pot luck. There was plenty of delicious food. CR's house, the yard in particular, is incredible. She took us on a tour as she gave away plants. Several people were glad to have them to spruce up their landscapes.

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