I was so happy when Jamee and Scott contacted me about Women’s Whitewater Festival at the Bearpaw for this year. For those of you who don’t know, a tornado tore through Bearpaw last year and they closed their operations while deciding whether to rebuild. Women’s Whitewater Weekend was always one of my favorite events because of the great energy of the paddling community that showed up and because Bearpaw is such a fun place to hangout. We had run the event 3 years in a row and it was always very successful — I missed it last year!
This year over twenty women came out in full force for the revival. All skill levels were present from novice through intermediate. The weekend was filled with paddling, yoga, and even some Guitar Hero on the Wii. I was really inspired with the insights that women shared in our women’s Circle on Saturday night about how what they learn while paddling helps them in their everyday life. My favorite thing about teaching kayaking is relating the experiences on the river to everyday life. The river teaches us so much and paying attention to those teachings can be a really fun and exciting path to happiness and fulfillment.
My other favorite moment happened the day before the event when I was paddling down Section 2 with TC and Jamee. Two bald Eagles flew over us and into trees right on the riverbank. We were able to float right past them and even look them in the eyes. They were beautiful. Once we floated by they made their way down to the river and started fishing. It was pretty special to be able to get that close to them. Unfortunately I didn’t have my camera on me… The intermediate group also saw an Otter on Section 4 on Sunday so there were some great wildlife sightings over the weekend.
Thanks Jamee, Scott, Amy and Shirlee and all of the awesome women who shared the experience! I’m looking forward to next year.
Here are some photos of the event that include the intermediate group on Section 4 of the Wolf River: