It's been nearly a decade since Adam Huse stepped in his first Kayak at the Tryweryn Whitewater Centre. His curiosity as his parents drove by led him to stop in and give it a go. A few years later, a school trip took him kayaking down the Ardeche in southern France, which inspired him to take the sport more seriously. Luckily London had a local slalom club that practiced on the Thames River, and Adam hasn't looked back since.
Throughout his time at university, he kept practicing slalom and slowly moved to running rivers and even freestyle, learning more tricks as he went. Now that school's finished, he is determined to take his kayaking to new heights, through entering both creek racing and freestyle competitions. After seeing other renowned paddlers with epic blogs, Adam decided to combine his love for kayaking with his passion for writing, photography and filmmaking. Through documenting his own journey, Adam is now writing kit reviews for a leading store, has finished his first kayaking video and has even begun editing his own photos on photoshop.
So far, I've surpassed everything I expected to achieve.
Adam has paddled some difficult rivers, and I caught up with him to walk us through his toughest river challenges to date.
Chateau Queyras Gorge @ River Guil, France
The Chateau Queyras section of the River Guil is where a river that is about 15 meters wide is funneled into a gorge that at points is not much wider than two meters. Combining this with the high water levels made for a really intense section of paddling. I remember paddling the whole section being entirely focused on paddling like I have never been before. Every motion just became instinctive, I wasn’t even thinking about what I was doing, it just happened. There were some big features in the gorge, but fortunately my lovely boat was able to see me through with relative ease. By the time I reached the end the adrenaline buzz was just incredible, definitely one of the best sections of paddling that I have ever done!
S-Bend @ Guisane River, France
What is usually a fairly rocky section of water, in the higher levels it was completely washed out and was just a stonking piece of grade 4+ water. The whole section was just big and bouncy with a number of stoppers on the way down keeping us all on our toes. To add a cherry to the top of the cake at the end was a very retentive stopper with a fallen tree wedged in the middle of it, not something that we wanted to go anywhere near. Fortunately the line was good enough for us to pass safely and it was a fantastic section of water.
Sunbury Weir @ River Thames, England
On its day, Sunbury Weir will produce the largest standing wave on the Thames at a good 5 feet. This wave is really clean and powerful which is great fun to surf. Then to make it all a little bit more fun, once you fall off you invariably end up in a very large stopper that will give you a bit off a kicking, though thankfully it's rather friendly and will let you go. It’s this combination that makes this feature crazy fun, a great laugh and a pretty intense first time experience!
Adam's Best Items
Wave Sport Recon 82 Kayak | "I’ve had my Wave Sport Recon 82 now for nearly 3 years and loved every moment of it. Its superb design means that it is capable of punching through almost anything that is in front of it while still maintaining great maneuverability. It also resurfaces really quickly and the clever design of the stern means that it very rarely catches at the back with force of the water being deflected away from the boat. The outfitting is by far the most comfy that I have ever sat in and has plenty of storage capability. It’s also super easy to roll!"
Robson Fluid Paddle | "I love these paddles unique shape which makes it really easy to put in strokes close to the boat, a feature that is really useful when messing around in a playboat. It also has a really big blade, which gives out a load of power at the right moments allowing really easy movement across the river and speed at the right moments. They also have really aggressive cranks that no other paddle seems to have which I love."
For more of Adam's gear reviews, visit his blog, or see his item recommendations on Dooers.
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