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Burning up Early Season BC

While the British Columbia low lands have been covered with snow most of the winter and records continue to be set for low Spring temps, low elevation snowpack, ect…, Spring is finally showing its face. Weather forecasters are predicting that warmer temps will begin to prevail as La Nina weakens and as a result we will certainly have a big water season in store. Todd Gillman and myself have been out despite the lack of Spring breaking in our new Burns and also getting some cockpit time in the new Everest. From post holing into the Ashlu to racing Robe Canyon and from backyard classics to Van Island explorations, the BC boating season is in full swing. It certainly feels like Pyranha is taking over the world out here on the creeks. Everyone is either paddling the Burn (or Everest) these days or wants one!

Bryan Smith in Everest

The Everest loves BC creeks!
Todd Gillman Ucona Waterfall

Todd Gillman Ucona River, BC
Bryan Smith Pamela Creek, BC

Bryan Smith Pamela Creek, BC
Chris Tretwold Ucona River, BC

Chris Tretwold Ucona River, BC

The season here in BC opened up really late this year. April produced extremely cold temps and the snow stayed locked up with the exception of a few days. The Ashlu was the savior for sure. Todd and I managed to get a few runs in the Lower Mile with the Squamish crew and then a couple weeks later the Box Canyon came in. This is likely the last season that the Ashlu will be free flowing. We will be spending a bunch of time up there later in the summer.

Squamish local Tim Loubier stomping out this tight slot on the Lower Mile. He has been rocking out the medium Burn this year.

Tim Loubier Lower Mile Ashlu

Tim Loubier Lower Mile Ashlu, BC

The Box Canyon is such an impressive landscape!

Greg Daspher Box Canyon Ashlu, BC

Greg Daspher Box Canyon Ashlu, BC

Greg Daspher is in the new Everest. He is a bigger guy and tall and wow is the boat performing for him. Taking an “Everest Line” here at Kernage on the Box Canyon.

Greg Daspher Box Canyon Ashlu, BC/Kernage

Greg Daspher Box Canyon Ashlu, BC

Another Pyranha convert…Whistler local Matt Compass paddling the Large Burn in the lower canyon of the Box.

Matt Compass Ashlu Box Canyon, BC

Matt Compass Box Canyon of the Ashlu, BC

The stoke for the boating season got even higher when we got warm temps and sunshine for the 1st Annual Robe Race. Todd Gillman organized this event and the turn out was great. Super fun grassroots event! Teams of two, a portage and race times of around 32 minutes made this race a little different.

Gillman getting the race logistics sorted and dialed in.

Todd Gillman Robe Race

Todd Gillman at the start of Robe Canyon Race, WA

Most of the crew here in the Northwest rallied for the event. Great to be on the water with such a big crew.

The Robe Race Crew

The racers for the 1st Annual Robe Race, WA

This past week we packed up the rigs and headed out to Van Island for some exploratory runs in the Gold River area. Despite lower than optimum flows we managed to find a few sweet waterfalls and several quality runs. Vancouver Island continues to get opneed up a little more each year as the beta circulates and people make the trek. Todd and I were both thinking of how many people fly to third world countries in search of new un-explored zones. Vancouver Island has fullfilled that nitch for us this Spring. Difference is we only have to ride a ferry for two hours rather than sit on a plane for 10.

Chris Tretwold has been fully on the scene in BC lately…again another paddler who has not been able to resist the large Burn.

Chris Tretwold Ucona River, BC/close-up

Chris Tretwold Ucona River, BC

The water quality on Van Island is second to none.

Chris Tretwold Pamela Creek, BC

Chris Tretwold Pamela Creek, BC

You can read some more detailed posts on all of these trips and see a bunch more pics at The Range Life I have also just launched a new website for my production company Reel Water Productions. I will be spending my spring and summer on the east coast shooting another sea kayaking film Eastern Horizons and then back to BC for the August and September season. Hope to see you all out and about.