Monday, December 20, 2010

"Worthy" Teaser - Kokatahi

With the Styx Race over and done with, hungovers worn off and a public holiday on monday... it felt as if we should go creeking... and we did. Poor motivation gave us a delayed start, but after rallying hard Barny and I made our midday pick up from the Kokatahi bridge. After what I think is the most beautiful heli-ride on the coast, we were sitting at Crawford Junction above about 6km of the West Coast's best white-water!

This is just a bit of the footage that we got that day... there is plenty more AND we'll be getting on this gem a couple of more times this season for sure. Enjoy.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Styx Hard-Man ... Barny Young!

Well after all the build up and everyone wondering who will it be... the Styx Race has come and gone and there is a champion! Thanks to the hard work of Pat Connell, with the support of Barny, Kev and Jeanna, the Styx Race was a major success. The event attracted 26 of New Zealand's hardest kayakers, with Keith Riley being the suggested favourite. From the very beginning of the race, however, it was apparent that Barny 'the bull-dog' Young was after the title. I foolishly tried to keep pace but after about a third of the walk in I faded hard, and decided that I should just keep a steady pace to finish in a reasonable position. Barny, however, kept charging and by the time he reached the put in he had put 2 minutes on his closest competitors who were Andrew 'Bug' Butler and Keith the "ripper" Riley. Being his home run, once on the water it would be hard to make up anytime on Barny which turned out to be impossible with Barny putting another minute on the field. Keith's turn around at the put in put him in front of Bug and that is how the top three turned out. 1st: Barny Young (59.49) 2nd: Keith Riley (62.38) 3rd: Andrew Butler (63.39).

Off to a good start.

The rat race.

Barny Young - 2010 Styx Hardman

After an afternoon in the sun, all the real kayakers congregated at the Kokatahi Pub for an evening of good music, cold beer and just a general good time. The prize giving saw every competitor receive a good prize, with the hard men being duly rewarded for their mammoth efforts.

Till next year, start walking those shuttles with your boat on your shoulder, walk to the next bus stop, park further from the supermarket... it all helps. The 2011 Styx Hard Man tested is going to be biggest and most contested title on the extreme race circuit!!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Gradient and Water Calendar 2011

Well the word is out, Barny and myself have put together a professionally made calendar in co-operation with Dave Kwant and Too-A-Tee printing. The reason for doing this is that we are planning on making a grass-roots white-water film of the West Coast. This film will aim to rekindle interest in New Zealand as a world-class paddling destination and to raise awareness of West Coast Rivers. Rivers that are under-threat from hydroschemes and other forms of development.

So simply we are trying to sell as many of these as we can, and for $15 bucks the price is right. The photos in this calendar are from the West Coast of New Zealand and from our latest trip to California. Getting one is easy, transfer $15 (or multiples of that if you are buying more than one) into:

National Bank
06 0471 0706296 38

With you name in the particulars and reference fields. Then email or with your address and number of calendars ordered. Simple! Get one for yourself, your mum, girlfriend, mistress or whoever... every one purchased helps us out heaps!

Cheers guys, see you on the river.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Start of the Summer

Since arriving back in NZ the weather has been terrible with heaps of rain, snow in October and just outright dismal weather. Last weekend, however, this all changed and we managed to get some great weather and bagged the Whitcombe Prices. This season I am turning my focus towards video, in hope of producing a grassroots white-water film at the end of the summer and because of this I am going to throw up some short teasers of the trips we get on. Here are some snaps Barny got and the short clip I made. Warm weather is on the way, get after it!

- The heli in a beautiful setting

- Barny POV punching through a big hole

- Me landing the sweet boof at the end of the inner prices gorge

and here is the short clip...

Sunday, October 17, 2010


Just a quick update from the WET - West Coast. At the start of the month was the annual Bliss-Fest kayaking event in Dunedin, which comprised of a extreme race, grand slalom, surf competition and short-film competition. Barny rolled down a day or so early to get on the Waikaia and although I wasn't able to go down, I thought I might throw a quick edit together and submit it for the film competition. Turns out it was a pretty sweet event down there, with a good turn out... Barny took out the Extreme Race and I even took out the film comp!!! Not a bad result for us down there, now its the styx extreme race to look forward too. Here are a couple pics of Barny from down there and a link to the California clip that took out the comp. Enjoy

- Barny ahead (P. Simon Davidson)

- Barny making his way back to the top for the final (P. Simon Davidson)

Here is a link to the winning short-film

Friday, October 1, 2010

Cali Video

Well after a great six weeks in Europe and a month of being back in NZ I have finally found time to make a short clip of Barny and my trip to California. This clip also features Postman (Justin) Patt and Snarley (Charles King), who we did a lot of our paddling with. This video has footage from Royal Gorge, Big Kimshew, South Merced, West Cherry, SB Feather, Upper Middle Consumes and more. After this I have decided that I might try turn my attention towards video for this summer and hopefully I can produce a worthy film of the West Coast... Hope you enjoy this AND watch this space

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

A-Team rubbing it in my face!!!

After my departure from California, for a more than worthwhile reason, Barny and the other A-Team members having been getting on the SUPER-classic california high sierra runs. Less the canon and myself, the A-Team got on Upper Cherry Creek and more recently Barny and Snarley got on the Middle Kings... here are some photos of the boys killing it at a high-water flows where is spiked up to 2000cfs at one point. Chur boys!

- A Team having a scenic stop

- Barny loving the tight and technical

- Middle Kings living up to its name

- Snarley Charley loves is Gnarly

- Barny now at home on the big cali rapids

- Barny... you bastard!!!

Well I dont want to say much more about this, I will be seeing you next year Mr Middle Kings!

Friday, July 23, 2010

West Cherry - All good things come to an end

In 2008, while on Upper Cherry, I noticed some cascading drops coming in on river right halfway through day two... little did I know this was the "not so but should be classic - West Cherry Creek. With the beta from Josh Hill and some uncanny fortune that seen the A-Team, less the Postman unfortunately, come together... I was walking into West Cherry with great enthusiasm knowing this was going to be my last trip in California for 2010! Flows were a little low but what it took away on day one, it gave back on day two because me and Shannon knew our way down from the confluence and the flow was perfect to run everything.

- Us failing to find the trail head the first time (P. Barny)

- Soaking it all in (P. Barny)

- The Canon (P. Barny)

- Loving one of my last granite slides (P. Snarley)

- Barny on Chuck's Drop (I think) (P. Snarley)

- Snarly on it (P. Barny)

- Me keeping it straight (P. Barny)

- The final boof out of Chucks (P. Barny)

- One for mum ay (P. Barny)

- Pot hole boofs! (P. Snarley)

- Snarley... being snarley (P. Barny)

- Daan featuring in the final gorge, great flow (P. Snarley)

- Yeah... that how we roll! (P. Amazingly kind boat owners!)

What a fitting end to the trip really. Throughout the hole trip things really fell into place logistically in terms of flows, people turning up and pretty much just everything. With the exception of Fantasy Falls, Barny and I pretty much got everything that we were hoping to get and much more. 49 to Bridgeport, Purdons to Bridgeport, Upper Middle Consumes, Devils Canyon of the Middle Feather, Yuba Gap, Little White Salmon, North Fork of the Clackamas, South Branch of the Feather, Kimshew through Secret Stash, Upper Summit Run, South Mecred, Golden Gate, Royal Gorge, Dinky Creek, Hospital Rock, East Kaweah, West Cherry... some of which we got a few runs down AND I am sure I have forgotten to mention a few! This has just made us even more hungry for cali granite and there is already a plan for a 2-3 week stop over on our way to Norway next year. Now its time to be a tourist in Europe before heading back to NZ for a big summer there. Watch this space

- A-Team Salute!!!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

East Kaweah

Last time I was in the states I missed out on this gem, much to my distaste. This year, however, I was fortunate enough to get in there with a great flow (some people thought it was a bit too high). A good friend of mine got a nasty beatdown in double drop and elected to walk out early in the day, which left Barny, Daan, Taylor and myself... a good team, with good lines and an amazing day!

- Barny on double drop (P. Jordy)

- Taylor on the East Kaweah stout (P. Jordy)

- Barny waiting for it (P. Jordy)

- Daan doing it for the cameras (P. Jordy)

- Me about to get it (P. Barny)

- "Barny Young the Preachers Son" (P. Jordy)

- Taylor Havin' a good time (P. Jordy)

- Banry dropping into the Gorge of the Slides (P. Jordy)

- Stout little gorge drop, so good (P. Barny)

- Daangerous Daan (P. Barny)

- Barny showing off his photography skills (P. Barny)

- Hey! Look at Daan boof (P. Barny)

With pretty good access and a reasonable flow window this is a sick run. I would go in higher but am also gutted we didnt get to run triple drop. Moral of the story is go to Three Rivers, paddle the East Fork and Hospital Rock and go bear hunting!!!

- Mumma Bear! (P. Jordy)

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Dinkey Creek - Waterfalls Section

Well the name of this run sum it up really... waterfalls! Plenty of clean waterfalls over 6 miles, in one of the coolest places I have paddled. Once you've got the shuttle sorted, thanks Airika and Katie, you have a 45 minutes hike (try do it faster) down to the put in. Due to a fast pace and fading light, thats what putting on at 4.45pm does, we didnt get many photos of day one's bigger drops but I tell you its all good! Here are some of the photos of our trip.

- Me sorting out some foot issues on the hike. (P. Barny)

- Brendon on the first slide... welcome to cali! (P. Jordy)

- Barny firing a shallow drop (P. Jordy)

- Me running the clean 20 footer (P. Barny)

- Portaging is always interesting (P. Barny)

- me running the most stout drop on day one (P. Barny)

- me running the drop right before camp (P. Barny)

- Just chilling at camp

- Snarly early on day two (P. Jordy)

- Barny firing it up (P. Jordy)

- Coming in hot (P. Barny)

- B and Snarley in the gorge, such a sweet section (P. Barny)

- Barny rocking the old school werner (P. Jordy)

- Me boofing into the gorge (P. Snarly)

- Snarly entering the crap shoot (P. Jordy)

- Snarly and Barny running as B put it, "the cleanest waterfall you'll ever see" (P. Jordy)

- B running a sweet slide (P. Barny)

This run is pretty damn good. Not super hard but just a whole lot of fun, definately not a thing to miss if its in while your in Cali.