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Testing out the New Shiva in Mexico

It has only been a couple weeks since I’ve arrived back from Mexico but I am still dreaming about the mountains, food, white water, and the beautiful women!  Mexico was the perfect playground to try out Pyranha’s new Shiva and here are the pictures to prove it –

We arrived in Vera Cruz, Mexico on New Years Eve and made our way south on New Years Day with high hopes to find a guide to get us to the put-in of the Rio De Oro.

Getting ready for our hike to the Rio De Oro

 We were fortunate to find the local guide Fernando who lead us directly to the put-in.

Following our guide Fernando

25 footer

The Shiva is the perfect boat for roosting some stouts.  It was hard to adjust at first because I’ve been so used to the Burn’s edges but the Shiva’s rocker makes it easy to boof and the added volume in the stern and bow keeps the boat stable even in the rowdiest of water.

Setting up the hammock for the night.

After our successful run on the Rio De Oro we decided to venture down south to check out Aqua Azul which was too high so we ended up running the Upper Rio Tzaconeja two days later.

Christopher Kyle showing off his Shiva on the Upper Rio Tzaconeja.

The Rio Tzaconeja was a perfect river for testing the Shiva’s versatility and maneuverability. With plenty of slot moves and beautiful scenery everyone was smiling at the end of the run.

Cool view from the top of one of the main rapids.

We then made our way back up to the Aqua Azul which still had a fair amount of water.  We decided to do the upper section which ended up being my favorite part of the entire trip.

The Upper Aqua Azul = Spectacular white water and scenery.

The coolest gorge I have ever been in.

Scariest rapid I ran the entire trip, massive cave on the bottom right. You have to exit the rapid by splatting the rock at the bottom and angling left.  Ridiculous but the Shiva handled her well.

The cave drop on the Upper Aqua Azul

One word - Sketch.

Such an amazing run with rapids at the beginning and ending reflecting something similar to what you would see on the Upper Blackwater in West Virginia.  The river at one point went completely underground and required a portage into a sealed cave.

The river just all the sudden ends at one point and enters into a cave. Crazy!

We ended the trip with running the lower section of the Aqua Azul to the bottom five where one of our fellow boaters ended up breaking his leg on the first of the big five but that is a whole other story that can be read here –  Here are some of my favorite shots of the Shiva in action on the Aqua Azul.  Huge thanks to Shawn Yingling and Adam Johnson for the photos.

Christopher Kyle taking it all in

Christopher Kyle putting the Shiva to the test!

Roosting the Shiva off of one of the larger slides on the Aqua Azul.Â

Boofing made easy with the Shiva

This trip would not have been made possible for me if it wasn’t for my local kayak shop Starrk Moon Kayaks, where you can pick up your very own Shiva today.  If you are looking for more paddling porn to get you through this cold January you should also check out a collaboration film I did called The Full-Release Project on Bombflow’s site -


Brenton Petrillo