Spring is just around the bend and we figured why not get everyone together for a run down the Kennebec to kick off the Maine whitewater season. We’re hoping rafters, body boarders, kayakers and anyone else will join us for an early season run on April 7th. We’ll be meeting at the put-in around 10. To prepare for the chilly day on the river we’ll be partying at The Marshalls in The Forks the night before, April 6th. Chris and Karen have graciously invited the Maine whitewater community and anyone else that would like to join us to come together for drinks, music and whitewater films. We’ll be playing a random assortment of whatever films people show up with all night. Bring some whitewater footage if you have any, also an instrument if you like to play music. There’s sure to be lots of jamming. The Marshalls has hotel rooms and so does the Inn next door. There might not be snow in the campground by then either. We hope to see everyone there! Jeremy and I will be giving away a free spot in one of our Swiftwater Rescue Clinics www.senditwhitewater.com
In 2011 Chuck Mathieu came up with the idea for Huckfest. Taking advantage of scheduled releases, something Maine is privileged to have, Chuck threw himself a birthday party. In true Chuck fassion it involved the river and big sending. The stage was Grand Falls of the Dead River, roughly a 35-40 foot waterfall with spectacular views and ideal layout for the Huckfest.
The original Chuckfest was attended by 9 whitewater kayakers and a small crowd of spectators, mostly raft guides and local bartenders with the day off. As all good whitewater boaters in The Forks do, we gathered at the Marshalls the night before and talked lines over some refreshing beers and amazing food.
We put together a shoddy video of the first gathering and in 2012 tried to spread the word as best we could. The result was huge, with nearly 30 whitewater kayakers running the falls and a raft first descent. Not to mention the insane crowd of spectators that cheered everyone on.
In 2013 the shenanigans continue… This year the Huckfest is the day following the K-BOMB, a whitewater kayak race on the Kennebec River. There will be live music the night before at the K-BOMB after party and many a boater in town. Come join us for all the fun, you’re not going to want to miss this one.
Sometimes when we get in our kayaks things don’t unfold quite as we had envisioned. Its that risk that most of us live for. In this short clip Terry Cook finds a nice ledge to bounce off at the Grand Falls Huckfest. Fear not however, he paddled away and went back to the top to throw down one of the best lines of the day.
After some upload struggles our video presented at The Maine Outdoor Film Festival is finally online! Big thanks to No Umbrella Media and Three Rivers Whitewater for putting together such a fun evening. Can’t wait to see how big this event is going to get over the years! Check out the film fest website at MAINEOUTDOORFILM.COM and I hope you enjoy our film, share it, like it, pass it around. We should have some hard copies soon to hand out as well and look for a full length feature in the not so distant future! Cheers!
Huck Fest, brought to you by the Send It, ME boys www.senditmaine.com was another huge success this year. Chuck Mathieu came up with the idea for Huck Fest last year and managed to round up 9 boaters to go run Grand Falls. This year the number of boaters more than doubled and the spectator crowd was incredible. Big thanks to everyone that came out and supported your local boating community. We could hear the cheers from the spectators ledge over the roaring sound of Grand Falls all the way on the other side of the river. You guys really helped get the boaters fired up! There were stomped lines, flat landings, a couple swims and even a first decent. Big props to Ryan Waterhouse and Ryan Thompson for absolutely stomping the first decent of Grand Falls in a raft (that we know of). Here’s a brief video recap of Huck Fest, more footage will be released later with another project the Send It, ME boys have been working on this year. Again, THANK YOU EVERYONE for coming out and we’ll see you again next year for the 3rd annual Huck Fest! Don’t forget to register for the K-BOMB coming up on July 21st either!
Edited by Paul Friedman
Send It, ME is a fantastic blog run by Jeremy Cass, featuring big sending by Maine’s own Chuck Mathieu, Chris Hull, Josh Giebs, of course Jeremy Cass himself, and many others. J Cass recently posted a great article about river safety in the Sendnique portion of his blog, your resource for helpful tips to improve your paddling skills and river safety knowledge. J Cass also posts extensive information about rivers and creeks in Maine, chances are if there’s something you’re wondering about you can find it in his archives. Look for more from Send It, ME and Maine River Life working together to bring you some long overdue whitewater events, resources and overall stoke! Go check out J Cass’ blog and remember kids, be safe out there, things can happen on the river the moment you let your guard down! Happy Sending! www.senditmaine.com
Check out Send It, ME’s season highlights!
Chuck Mathieu had the crazy idea of gathering a slew of boaters to run Grand Falls on the Dead River. Through a facebook event and some good word of mouth advertising things came together. Chuck managed to gather some of Maine’s best paddlers for an all out huck fest. Some carnage ensued, but everyone through down. You can bet they’ll be back next season, and with a bigger crew. Check out what went down that morning: