Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Eiskanal Boatercross, Outdoorshow Catwalk and Lahn Touring

Two weeks ago the first invitational boatercross race at the Eiskanal took place in Augsburg as part of the slalom world-cup program. Organized by Arnd Schaeftlein and Jakobus Stenglein, strong boatercross paddlers like Mike Dawson (NZ; winner of the creek race at the Teva Mountaingames 2009 in the USA), Dejan Kralj (SLO; winner of the Teva Extreme Outdoor Games 2009 in Italy) and Thilo Schmidt (GER; winner of the Sickline-World-Championchips 2008) took part and fought for the 1st place! In the end, it was taken home by slalom local Hannes Aigner, who had a stunning final. Second came Dejan Kralj (SLO) and third Jokobus Stenglein (GER). In the womens category Mira Louen won, second came Jessy Decker and third Katja Frauenrath (all GER). I myself had a really bad start and after that couldn´t fight my way back to the first two places to make the cut to the next round. So I enjoyed watching the finals - just like 1000 (!) other spectators. All in all the race was really a lot of fun and I´m looking forward to more of these races at the Eiskanal! Here are a couple of shots:

Getting ready before the race

Really bad start

The ramp was fun anyway

Charging full on but in vain

Last weekend we first made a short stopover at the Outdoorshow in Friedrichshafen (see below) and after that headed to the Lahn River for a two-day long kayak/canoe-touring trip.
The Lahn River is a 245.6-kilometer-long, eastern tributary of the Rhine River. Its course passes through the federal states of North Rhine-Westphalia (23.0 km), Hesse (165.6 km), and Rhineland-Palatinate (57.0 km). It has its source in the Rothaargebirge, the highest part of the Sauerland. It meets the Rhine at Lahnstein, near Koblenz. Important cities along the Lahn include Marburg, Gießen, Wetzlar, Limburg an der Lahn, Weilburg and Bad Ems.
Our first day stretch started in Löhnberg and went for 12 km until Gräveneck where we stayed at a campsite straight by the river. On the second day we continued from Gräveneck for about 14 km until Runkel. On the first day we paddled with our freestyle boats to have some fun doing flatwater tricks but as the other paddled open canoes their speed was quite tireing in the short boats ;-) Therefore on the second day we switched to a canoe as well, which was my first open canoe paddling I´ve done so far. If you like really beautiful nature, natural riverbanks, no white-water and don´t mind to meet other paddlers the Lahn is an awesome paddle destination. Check out some pics below:

One of the many sluices on the Lahn

Maybe we did first descents over many rocky weirs as normally
all the other paddlers go through the sluices ;-)

The city of Weilburg is wrapped by a marked loop of the river. The neck of this noose is traversed by a boat tunnel, unique in Germany.

Two ladies helping Maria and me conquer the furious Lahn River on the second day

In the evening Maria had her first three kayak-pupils. Celina (9 years), Marie (11) and Lea (15) wanted to try to do the eskimo-roll. Once again I was astound how fast young people can learn. If we would have had a few more hours time I bet they all would have learnt the roll.




Befor we headed to the Lahn last weekend we made a quick detour to the Lake of Konstanz to help out Arnd Schäftlein and Teva at a athlete-based runway show. In short: it was really fun to showcase the new shoe-models.

Seppi put on the most extrovert show of us all



Hanna in the focus of her boyfriend paparazzi Jared



Me myself and I

David Arnaud on a flying visit to the Teva booth

Pics by: Arnd Schäftlein, Maria Stelzig and me

cu on the river,

Thursday, 2 July 2009

Status of the Brudermühl-Bridge Wave on the Isar (Munich)

Over the last weekend we had finally enough water in the isar for the fist time in 2009. Unfortunately the waves at the Wittelsbacher- and Reichenbacherbrücke are still gone. Either from the renaturation of the riverbanks or because of the construction site in the water by the Reichenbacher, which dams up the water and even might dam it back up to the Wittelsbacherbrücke. But instead over the period of three days we could paddle the wave/holes at the Brudermühlbrücke at three different water levels. Each level caused different features. Check them out below.

First (highest) level: 230 - 240 cm

First wave is too flat for a playboat. The second wave is catchable from the eddy and turns into a wave-hole. The further surfers right you go the meatier it gets.

Especially surfers with oldschool longboards were enjoying the first wave

Meaty foam-wave

200m downstream there is another wave which you can just catch on the fly

Second level: 180 - 200 cm
At this level the first waves breaks at the surfers right and holds a paddler as well. The second wave opens up more and it gets more wavy. Whereas the third wave turns into a river wide hole which is not too retentive.

Blunt setup

Blunt initiation

Do it


Relaxing or queing in the eddy

Maria carves up the second wave

Third level: 150 - 160 cm
At this level the first wave breaks even more and is the most retentive. The second wave is nearly gone as it has flattened out in the middle. Just the surfers left shoulder is still working. And the third feature has become a quite sticky hole where McNastys are possible, so probably all moves.

Left shoulder of the second wave

Urban put-in

First wave

Double surf in the first wave

Pictures by Mathias Blitz, Maria & Ellen Stelzig

Greetings from:
the Jolly Paddlers of the "Happy-Nookie-Van"

PS: We went to the Eisbach two days ago and Maria made it over the wooden planks by her own on her first session really fast, awesome stuff!