zaterdag 31 mei 2014

Springtime in the Pyrenees!

On the first weekend of april we had our selections in C2 for the Europeans, Worlds and World cups. The competition took place in Metz, its was during a french N1 competition. So a strong field of C2s was present including Klauss/Peche (overall winners of the world cup 2013, 4th place Olympics) and Labarelle/Peschier (European champions 2013).

The first day was a very technical course, especially in C2. But we managed to paddle it very well, qualifying for the finals, with our time in te first half of all the C2s. Although we had a good result our time was not good enough to be qualified for the Europeans... Only three of all the participating C2s would be in the time of our selections that day. We still believed that it was possible...we had one chance the next day. With a less difficult course we were optimistic, and started very fast. When al of a sudden we messed it up in the middle of the course, we don't know why...was it the fatigue or the lack of training the month before, maybe bad luck...
So this year we will not be able to compete at the Europeans in Vienna. No worries next year another chance and another year to train harder and better!

Directly after the competition we drove to Mimizan, where we stayed a couple of days for some surfing. The waves were really huge - sometimes up to three meters - meaning a lot of wipeouts and not an easy first time for Bram.

A few days later we drove to the Pyrenees to paddle L'Ouzom and Le gave du Brousset on one day! An epic start of our stay in the mountains.  The next river we paddled was a class IV piece of the rio Ara in Spain. Ending the day in Bergua near the rio Forcos ( paddled it last year) which hadn't enough water in it but still a nice place to spend the night.

Sort - home of whitewater kayak in the Pyrenees - was our next stop. Always nice to drive through a town and see a lot of kayaks on the roofs of cars, kayak-clothes drying outside, ... feeling the 'JAH' vibes.

It had rained non stop over there the last days. We heard that the rio Palomeras had a perfect level and decided to take a look and if ok, paddle it. The first drop was still covered by a glacier but the level was indeed substantial. Full of stoke we ended the day driving up to the Alto Noguera to paddle her the next day. When we woke up the weather was awesome and the waterlevel had risen to a nice high level, which meant an epic day of whitewater once again.

We also paddled the rio Veral (little bit of low flows) and ended our trip with some days of surfing in the Basque country!

Two weeks of sun, whitewater, mountains, ocean and waves.... Living the good life!

Up next:
- First week of july of to the french Alps
- Three weeks of awesomeness in the whitewater capital of Europe... NORWAY!
- September back to Sort

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