Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Road Trippin'

I left Monkey Island with very little plan, but a van loaded with kayaks, coffee, Team Rider Tim Copplestone and Pete H. This was the beginning of Nookie Creek Dayz II. The sun was shining when we arrived in Versam to meet Team Riders James Weir and Lilli Winter. We cruised down the beautiful Vorderrhein before heading to Ticino.

Tim and Hazel

In Lavertezzo we paddled the classic Middle Verzasca following the effortless lines and cheeky wink of Team Rider Ron Fischer. The boys then continued to take on Lucifer on the Lower Versasca.

After a camp fire and some beers we woke up next to the stunning Rovarno River. The boys hiked in with boats and kit and I followed. We finally arrived at the get in and I had to walk back out on my own for 45 minutes. I felt a little like Hansel and Gretel. By all accounts the boys had a mission on a great river with a few crazy portages including abseiling with their kayaks on their shoulder.

Next day we hit the Ribo, and as always the Ribo Falls was sweet.

Tim hucking Ribo Falls

Our next mission was to drive to Elm for the Straight Down Striit. While the boys were being manly with chainsaws I went for my first paddle of the Striit.

Hazel and Tim getting to run the Striit for the first time

James checking the lines on the Striit

The competition was great with a few surprising upsets in the head to head. Ron Fischer came second to Jakobus Stänglein.

Ron racing one of his many competitors

Team Riderz Ron Fischer and James Weir sharing a little Nookie Love

The party was fantastic with music from The Clowns. In the morning to shake the hangovers and the rain we drove south. We arrived in the Valsesia region of Italy.

We went straight for a park and play on the Solba Slides.
Pete and Tim on Solba Slides

We then went for a quick huck on Landwasser Falls before paddling the Mastelleno.

Hazel on Landwasser Falls

The Valsesia region has so many beautiful rivers to paddle, so we spent a few days making our way round all of them. I think the Sesia has got to be one of my favourite sunshine runs.

During the week Ron and Pete ran the renowned Mollia Rapid. It was definitely a challenge worth watching.

Ron in the middle of the Mollia Rapid

Ron, Sesia.

It was a great road trip and of course, I'm now busy planning the next : )