Kayak Question

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How does historical kayaking literature eg. Graham Egarr north/south island guide books affect kayaking in the adventure recreation scene. If there was a mis-leading piece of information in this historical literature how would that affect kayaking!!!

Your thoughts please.....????

cal's picture

Even now its impossible for an author of this sort of book to be able to predict what is going to happen to a river. One of my fav photos is the shot of the rapid on the clutha just above where the Kawarau joins up. This section is now under lake Dunstan. I have Graham Charles book and am sure that some of the info in there won't be as accurate as it was when the research for the book was being done. To anyone willing to go and find out and do the work, Thanks. Even those older books make for interesting reading. And its a great way to see how far the sport has come.

kayneo's picture

Yeah but not the norm!!! Taken far to literaly was given as example to paint visual pic where we have none. Would like to know how many paddles (WW) are made ova 2m these days!! With the introduction of the playboat the longer paddle has started to dissapear.

enjoying.it's picture

There is nothing wrong with a two metre long paddle.....

...if you can pull it through the water!

kayneo's picture

I kinda understand where you are coming from. I dont believe that even the people that have written these books etc take to much stock in their content anymore. They are really good as a super rough guide to where the river is but that is as far as I would trust it. The outdoors is forever changing and our sport is one of he most dynamic of its type. Your better off chancing things on newer literature and even that is at times incorrect.

The last time I really gave this some good thought was my most recent run on the Tiki. I thought of Max Grant and the lads in their old, long, round boats and paddles over 2 meters long, trying to make their way down a nice tech G5. Just imagine their trip report as opposed to if they had run it last year in a Flippy or something?? Would have been completely different.

tim0's picture

In my copy of Egarr's book it does not describe the Rangitata Gorge as 'unnavigable' by water craft.

To answer Joel's maybe poorly worded question.

Egarr'sbook has a disclaimer on the second page and as a reader you should note the age of the book and note that it is written by a bloke whose picture appears on the front cover in a fibreglass kayak with a wooden paddle. Therefore you should be aware of the vast improvements in kayaking technology since this book was written and also the possibly that the river features have changed since the time of writing the book. But in taking that in consideration, historical books like Egarr's (if you can readly can call it historical) provide a good motivational read to try rivers that are seldom done these days. Like the Upper Ashburton Gorge which I have never hear of people attemping these days. It is a bit like historical mountaineering/tramps books, they provide great info on little done tramps in little known places which are just crying for me to do them and think about how much harder it would have been to do the same mission 50 years ago without GPS and Goretex (or hard plastic boat and carbonfibre paddle).

A worthy read in all kayakers bookself

ali's picture

Inclined to agree.

rex's picture

Not at all,

Rangitata Gorge is described as 'unnavigable' by water craft.

People don't take any notice of old books as far as what they do.


grasscutter's picture

Bro, no offence but that is a pretty unclear question. Might want to try again? It is extremely open to interpretation