President's Corner

Cold Weather Boating Preparations

By Scott Harvey

Scott Harvey.jpg

Greetings fellow club members,


Here in the Northwest, we have experienced some brilliant  weather during the past month. On one particular occasion during my get out and about to enjoy the Fall colors and recon some local rivers, I happened to stop off at Dodge Park along the Sandy River. While letting the ol' pooch out to stretch his legs and sniff out any familiar scents, I came across a weathered familiar sign that said "Danger water level and current of the river rise suddenly and without warning - swim at your own risk". I took this statement as a metaphor of what's to come this Winter.

We're at that bittersweet time of the year were the comfortable temperatures and beautiful blue skies are parting way to the gray and drizzly conditions of Winter. Boating here in the Northwest and particularly during Winter, is a unique time of year to get out and experience uncrowded river drainages that are not normally runnable the other three seasons of the year. Winter boating requires more attention to details such as river flows, ambient temperatures, incoming storms, river hazards such as sweepers, logs and possible landslides. Also, making sure you are dressed warm and appropriately for the conditions. Some items that I carry with me during the winter months are fingerless neoprene gloves, skull cap, small emergency heating pads, flashlight or emergency light, Clif Bars, hot coffee or hot cider, flares and cellphone if there's reception. Of course, life jacket, whitewater helmet, dry suit, whistle, rescue knife, first aid kit, water, throw bag and rescue gear are standard item's on every trip. 


We will be having our Christmas/Ugly Sweater/White Elephant Gift Exchange party again this year at the Lucky Labrador Beer Hall at 1945 NW Quimby St, Portland, OR 97209. The gathering hours will be between 6 pm and 9 pm. Pizza and Salad will be served from 6:15 pm until around 7:30 pm. Prize and good natured ribbing for the individual voted with the ugliest Christmas sweater. White Elephant gift exchange (please bring gift if you'd like to participate) and gift card drawings. Hope to see you all there!


Cheers and Safe Boating,

Scott Harvey