Training day

Training day

KJ, Oliver and I (Scott) did a training paddle today on the swollen Mississippi. We put in at the East River Flats Park on the University of Minnesota campus and paddled a mile upstream to the Lower St. Anthony Lock & Dam, then flew downstream about 5 miles to Lock & Dam #1 aka the Ford Dam, then paddled back upstream to our origin point. The cool air felt refreshing beneath the gray skies, and the leafless trees filling the gorge looked silvery and wonderful—a few trees close down to the river even had buds on them. Oliver took the bow and experimented with using both a kayak paddle and a canoe paddle. KJ took the stern and called the “huts” that told me (and Oliver when he had the canoe paddle) to switch sides as he expertly steered us on our course. I tried out a new app on my phone which worked great for capturing our speed and distance information; our maximum speed was 11.1 mph! On the way back we had to work hard paddling against the current, and then the sky opened up and we paddled in a deluge that quickly resulted in some impressive waterfalls cascading down the east bank. Soon a thick layer of fog reduced our visibility markedly. Afterwards, standing soaked and shivering on shore, we all agreed it was a good paddle and we felt good about our ability to paddle swiftly and in sync. We have another paddle planned in two weeks and are very excited to have Casey, our fourth team member, join us for that. More videos and pics in the comments.

Spotlight on KJ

Spotlight on KJ

Training run

Training run