Introducing kids to slalom has become an integral part of our instruction program.  It is the tool for learning better boat control – which plays into river running and freestyle, angle control which plays into creek boating, and just another great way to have fun on the river!

This past weekend the annual Citizens Slalom Race on the Tuckasegee River took place–bringing together old guys, college kids, and a fresh new group of participants – the kids!!  And guess who rocked the race?!?!  We caught up with Aylan and Phynley and Skylar, who along with McKayla and Griffin, showed the rest of the participants that it is not about how big you are, but about how well you paddle the gates that wins! Skylar, Aylan and Phynley shared some thoughts on their first slalom race:

“Phynley and I did the Cullowhee slalom race yesterday and I came in second place. Pretty cool. You could tell everyone was racing for fun because (team ERA) beat a lot of the college kids. I think everyone was pretty nervous on their first run and confident on their second. There were enough C2’s to do a team run for us and it was cool! The race was really fun, I can’t wait for the next one. Go team ERA!”
–    Aylan Meyers

“We went to the race and we got interviewed on a TV camera! McKayla was crazy with it but we just went along. I finished in 5th place! It was fun. It was great seeing the C2 team race. They were all old except for Murryn and Griffin, but they were still fast. My best run was my 2nd. My first race was good. (Team ERA) was a hit.  My daddy told us the two most important things were to do our best and to have fun, and we did.”
–    Phynley Meyers


Kayak Poem

By: Skyler Singleton

The timer gives the thumbs up
Now go!
I pull, pull, pull to start the race
My sister clangs that bell
The sound harsh and cruel in my world of Zen
My paddle moves to the soundless drum within my head
My kayak glides across the water,
Like a gentle breeze on snow
The red and white stripes for upriver
Oh paddle please don’t knock!
Green and white for down
I carve a turn, nearly hitting,
That peppermint candy cane
Lost in my world of strokes and water
Not hearing what’s going on
Oh, six! It kills!
Like an uphill sprint to win the race,
To get to that red candy cane
And now to get to the finish line
I’m flying without any wings
Soaring across and through,
That broken finish line.

Thanks ladies for taking a break from real “homework” to artistically share with us! Can’t wait for next time to paddle with you!