Back Deck Carry - with swimmer assisted tow

Discussion in 'General Paddling Discussions' started by Neptune Bill, Mar 29, 2018.

  1. Neptune Bill

    Neptune Bill Paddler

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  2. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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    Thanks!
    Definitely one to practice next time I'm out with friends.
     
  3. designer

    designer Paddler

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    I suppose you don't get "points off" for something on your back deck if it's a swimmer.

    That person sure got up on the back deck easily - perhaps the swell/timing helped. With my Mariner, you sort of need a stepladder - and that's when it's in the water. Maybe I need to fill it with more gear.
     
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  4. Pascal

    Pascal Paddler

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    Nice. Fast and clean. I like the fact that no tow line is involved. Thx for sharing.
     
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  5. AndyM

    AndyM New Member

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    though, probably goes without saying, while saving property is important, rescuing the 'swimmer' is of utmost import (if you can't do both).
    (it does look like a good thing to practice)
    -
    several years ago, paddling into Fort George Inlet (FL) in moderate conditions (very 'choppy' - with tide going out, surf coming in).
    There were 2 of us. He went over, came out.
    I went to assist, was very hesitant in getting too close to him as the kayak was bobbing up and down dangerously.
    He was able to retrieve critical items from the kayak, we came together, he climbed on back, and I paddled to shore - very slowly (against tide going out). He took a real beating back there, bounced off a couple of times, but eventually we made it back in.
    I kept looking back - keeping an eye on the kayak.
    After he was on shore - I verified he was ok (left food and water with him), I went back out for the kayak. I spent about 20 minutes looking (bouncing around), but could not locate it.
     
  6. Peter-CKM

    Peter-CKM Paddler

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    Of course, this only works in certain conditions, and if it wouldn't work, you save the person first.

    Not having done this yet, so going on watching it only - this may have actually helped in your situation AndyM. By grabbing the swimmer's boat, the person on back deck can put some of their weight on to that boat. Without contact towing the swimmer's boat, the person on back deck needs to keep their legs (and sometimes arms) down in the water to provide additional balance. Contact towing the boat should allow them to get more of their body out of the water (less drag) as they can balance on the other boat. So it is possible this would have been able to speed your moving the swimmer to shore (if you could have gotten the swimmer's boat under control). Or, having the boat with you, let you go a shorter distance and put them back in to their boat on water.

    Part of why it needs to be practiced by both parties is it looks like the swimmer needs to actually be the one to get their boat under control. If they are together, the rescuer just needs to offer their back deck and the swimmer mounts and holds their boat.

    A few years ago rescues went from the person being rescued being passive to them being somewhat active. Neptune Bill was one of the first I had seen promoting this. The first step was the swimmer flipping their boat upright, which made it easier to move and also exposed deck lines for easier maneuvering/holding. This is a necessary step for the recovery shown in the video.

    Will take practice by both parties, conditions that allow this, and everyone thinking of this or at least being in position that they could get it going quickly when someone says they should do this - quite a bit to come together such that this may not happen much. But it does look like a good tool to have in your toolbox.
     
  7. designer

    designer Paddler

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    I usually carry a short tether line (with a clip on each end) with me - of course it doesn't do any good if I can't reach it. Though it is more "stuff to do", the short clip in of boat to my deck line would allow swimmer to still control the boat but alleviate the need to strongly hang on to it. But then again, if that clip is out of my reach (the driver), it could be a problem if I need to disengage the towed boat.
     
  8. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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    I was in a class a couple of weeks ago with Kate Hives, and she had a variant of that tether with a carabiner on one end and a jib shackle (quick release) on the other. The quick release clipped to a line that ran from side to side just in front of the cockpit, so that the QR could slide to whatever side the towed boat was on.
    She mentioned that she'd picked it up in the UK (Wales?).
     
  9. Astoriadave

    Astoriadave Paddler

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    Jib shackles are sometimes tricky to release, especially with gloved fingers. Otherwise, I have used them with good success on my power boat. Heavily loaded, tougher than the likely loads in kayak rescues.

    There is another name, also, I think.
     
  10. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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    Kate's had a small stainless carabiner; mine has a large 'biner so I can snap it on my paddle if I want.
    quick release tether.JPG
     
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  11. JKA

    JKA Paddler

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    I have a similar system, I run a line across between the side deck lines and have a stainless steel ring on it, free to slide. My tether has a crab and float on one end, similar to John's above. The other end I tie on to the ring with a Highway man's hitch https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Highwayman's_hitch which has been tested to release under pressure.

    Must practice the OP method, looks interesting. Thanks for sharing.

    Cheers

    John
     
  12. Peter-CKM

    Peter-CKM Paddler

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    A comment on contact tow lines - it may not be readily apparent when watching the video, but no contact tow line was used. The swimmer/person on back deck is holding their kayak, and acting as the contact tow.

    This is important, as if something happens (breaking wave or the like) they need to be able to just let the boat go (and likely get off the back deck of the rescuer at the same time, so the rescuer can survive). This rescue is needed when you quickly need to get boat and swimmer out of a challenging area. Challenging area also means that you might need to disentangle the tow on a moment's notice (faster than a quick release would allow) to keep rescuer out of trouble.
     
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  13. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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    Absolutely -the contact tow tether is a bit off-topic; sorry.

    I did notice that the 'rescuer' grabbed the swimmer's boat and then skillfully 'handed it off' to the swimmer. Not easy to do, so definitely needs a) high skill level and b) practice.
    It would also require an extraordinary 'swimmer' to jump back into the water (getting off the rescuers boat if necesasry) - mentally a tough thing to do for most people.
     
  14. Neptune Bill

    Neptune Bill Paddler

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    Lots of good comments, thanks.
    As the rescuer, grabbing the swimmers boat gives me more stability, making it easier while the swimmer climbs on.
    Also in any type rescue in dynamic areas, letting the swimmer know that if a wave comes you may need to tell them to let go is a good idea. As demonstrated in this version of the back deck, ride :)

    7C921C44-FB74-40DC-84BB-CB3C3B0439C9.jpeg CEAF3869-73DA-4A3F-AAB0-9F2AEF732002.jpeg
     
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