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The end of our CO trip

By Elaine Campbell

After team trials I paddled Castle Creek with some of the Team Indecision boys. Got pinned, swam and walked out before the Slaughterhouse section, apparently I wasn’t feeling it that day.

Next up on the tour was the Teva Mountain Games. Teva is one of the funnest events on the tour. The paddling is great (even though the water is crazy cold and high elevation), you meet lots of new boaters, and the party on Saturday night is ridiculously fun. My parent flew in from New Bedford, MA to watch the competition and do some sight seeing. It was really great for them to come and get a taste of what I’m doing. I paddled a couple of days before the competition and worked on my mcnasty. Prelims went well I had my first mcnasty in a competition so I was pretty excited about that. Semi-finals didn’t go as well as I hoped. It was a great event even thought I didn’t place in top 5 I was still pleased with my performance.

We left Teva with a stow-away named Taylor Cote. Her dad had to fly back home so she came with us to finish the tour. We stopped to paddle at the Lawson hole and I was feeling a bit tired and thought I had a little too much fun the night before but was sick most of the week with a cold. That night we stayed with my brother-in-law Allyn and his wife Minty and their two girls, Abbey and Kylie, and their two dogs, Bear and Stinzy, outside of Boulder. Next day Taylor and I headed to Lyon’s and Jeff flew home for work. It was just the four girls in Lyons: Brook, Laya, Taylor, and myself . Plenty of estrogen to go around. We paddled at the play-hole and then went to Six Flags with a crew and had an awesome time. Kelsey Thompson went on his first roller coaster ride which was pretty funny. The competition went fairly well for me, I came in third with a 310 point ride and had a Phonix Monkey and some other moves. I won two cases of beer from Oskar Blues which was so sweet! Taylor also came in third in Lyon’s in the Womens “Not so Pro” class, a glimpse of things to come for the petite teen. Then, off to Salida.

We picked Jeff up at the airport and almost took the top of the RV off because of low clearance, my bad. We made it to Salida and the crew was back together (Team Indecision). FiBark Fest is a good time and is where the tour ends for a lot of people. It’s a little sad because everyone you have been hanging with and paddling with is about to part and go home. I’ll have to admit I was looking forward to going home. Seven weeks is a long time to be on the road. It didn’t go well in the competition for me but I had a lot of fun. Taylor took first in the Jr. women competition which was awesome. Clearly a result of my expert tutilidge!

All around, an amazing trip: driving from VT to Reno and then all over CO. Who’d a thunk that me, a city girl from New Bedford, MA would one day be traveling across the country to compete in freestyle kayaking competitions and would make the US Freestyle Kayaking Team!

I’m finally back home on the couch in VT. I got to paddle the Dryway on the Deerfield River and soon I’ll be in NY training for the World’s and sailing.

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Teva Games

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Laya Taking in the scenery in Lyons

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Tracking a coyote

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Fibark Fest

That’s all for now!

-Elaine Campbell


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