Kayak Rescue Lessons Learned (Video)

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Kayaking is a sport where reliance on fellow kayakers is of utmost importance as crisis situations can occur witin an instant.

This post highlights the lessons learned by Chris Gragtmas during an incident in a large complex rapid called Colton Falls on the Raquette River in the state of New York

In short, he presents the importance of 5 key takeaways: 1) Think The Situation Through to form a logical game plan – This mitigates any additional risks. 2)Maintain Calm, Clear Communication with everyone. 3) Create Safety Redundancies – Create plan A, plan B and C scenarios in case things do not go as planned. 4) Establish Verbal and Physical Contact with the victim quickly. 5) Stay-Current and Knowledgeable with some type of first responder certifications.

Interdependence is a strong bond in whitewater kayaking. At the top of any rapid, we silently acknowledge that we are there for our paddling partners, and we know that they are there for us. Rivers are dynamic and powerful places, and crisis situations happen to the best of us.

While I have been on both sides of the coin in the past (victim and rescuer), rarely have I ever caught a full rescue on video. I recently had the opportunity to analyze one from start to finish, and found it to be a tremendous learning experience.

This particular incident occurred on the Raquette River in New York in a large, complex rapid by the name of Colton Falls. Here are my key takeaways from this experience
Read the full article at canoekayak.com

See Next page for a video of an actual pinned kayaker rescue

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