Over the last few years I've started to venture into some areas with strong rapids (Ripple Pt, Green, surge narrows, okisollo, Race Rocks, Trial Island, etc...). I've been trying to read up on these areas but there seems to be relatively little information about them. For the bigger rapids (okisollo), I've used current tables to avoid them at maximum flow, but some others I've run during high flow. For the most part the rapids seem pretty fun and harmless, but there were a few experiences with some weird features that left me feeling a little unsure of what to make of them. There was one particular experience, just off the North end of East Thurlow, where we ran some heavily flowing rapids which were unlike anything I'd experienced in the ocean before. Some of the scariest parts we encountered in that section were these absolutely massive whirlpools and also these features which seemed to form along the edge of boils that were like eddy lines on steroids. They were like a rip between the edge of the boil and opposing currents. One of these things had a suctioning effect that grabbed us and sucked our kayak down to the point it was almost entirely below the waterline (to be fair our kayak was already sitting quite low from the weight of us and our gear). It held us there and just kept washing water over us. We had to paddle pretty fiercely to get out of that effect, though I imagine eventually it probably would have let us go on its own. Ever since, I've been particularly wondering about that feature. I have a much harder time finding information on that than I do whirlpools. Usually eddy lines are just harmless little features, but this I would call an "eddy rip". This experience has resulted in me having a few questions that I can't seem to find a satisfactory answer for... Can a whirlpool or eddy rip (not sure if this is the right name) actually suck down a kayak? Has this ever happened? Are there any books that go into any detail about travelling through tidal rapids? I have Kimantis' books, which are great, but he doesn't go into much detail on tidal rapids. Is a tandem kayak more or less safe in rapids? I can see it's possibly less safe because it's less manoeuvrable, but then again it's also more buoyant as it's a bigger boat. Are these whirlpools and rips a threat to a person wearing a PFD? They look pretty intimidating, but from what I've read it sounds like they wouldn't be capable of sucking down a person with a PFD and even if they do, they would spit you out pretty quickly anyway. Typically I'm travelling in a 22' tandem Seaward Passat with my wife. On longer trips, we have it loaded to the gills with gear. I really want to get more informed because I want to travel these areas, but I don't want to take unnecessary risks. A few experiences of my experiences were pretty intimidating, but I just can't make up my mind on how real the danger in these areas is. I'd love to hear from others about their experience with tidal rapids. Does anyone else travel through them while they are running? Is their bark worse than their bite? Has anyone else taken loaded kayaks or tandem kayaks through rapids?