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 Post subject: Deception Pass Dash
Unread postPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2011 12:59 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 12, 2005 5:00 pm
Posts: 1706
Location: Coquitlam,BC
This year I finally got off my ass and got myself a passport, which could mean one thing-I was doing the Dash. A 6 mile race through beautiful,somewhat cold and slightly swirly waters of the Deception Pass on Sunday,December 4th.
My experience with racing to date involved 3 Bowen races and somewhat irregular participation in the Deep Cove Tuesday Night Races,so my expectations from the event were more or less : " sign name,get number, chat with other racers, get a quick standing briefing,wait for final horn blast,race". The event that was the Deception Pass Dash by far surpassed that. We arrived at Bowman Bay on Saturday afternoon. At the gas station nearby I started talking to another guy in a truck with 2 kayaks on the roof, who turned out to be Bill, the main organizer of the event. Very friendly and approachable guy, sorted out a couple questions I had about the race and the park permits.
On arrival, signed in the name and got a number and went to look around and chat with other racers. Met and was warmly greeted by Setsuko and saw a few other familiar faces.
The boats were also different than what you see here usually. The boats in Sea Kayak category were mostly brit-style skeg boats(most commonly NDK Explorer),so I didn't feel out of place in my Sirocco. Boats were mostly left at Bowman Bay under supervision of a few people that stayed and camped the night there to keep them safe.
The most unusual craft was definitely the homebuilt stitch and glue pedal-powered,prop driven trimaran,which went like stink powered by it's creator. There was also a weird aluminum-frame SOF double,which was aparently a soviet-era folding frame with a nylon skin done somewhat recently, in the list of competitors the boat was listed as "Comrade Lenin". Also done very well in the race. And there was a guy in the little purple Mariner Coaster who made very impressive time as well,especially considering the length of the boat.
One of the experienced racers led a group,us included, on a guided tour of the race course by foot, to the passes and explained a few things about the local currents which was quite helpful.
On Saturday night there was a social dinner and raffle that added a lot to the warm and friendly feeling of the whole event.
Me and Caitlin camped the night at Deception Pass park,while a large portion of participants stayed at the bunkhouse/cabins.
Sunday morning we drove back to Bowman Bay on a beautiful but chilly morning, to find the boats nicely iced up. I was glad that I taped the number on the day before.
The race start: 10:27, timed just so you have 15 mins or so before tide turns and starts pushing against you,as you come into the Deception pass,on the way to Strawberry island,and then current is with you on the way back.
The final horn blew. As expected, the majority of surf skis and outriggers have left majority of the sea kayaks behind. I felt goofy for the first time racing a skeg boat,but eventually fell into my pace by the time we reached Deception island. Hugged the eddy under the bridge very closely,inside the kelp line, which seemed to have worked. For the "crux move", I followed a lay-down paddleboarder and pulled out of the eddy about as late as possible, trying to get into the eddy of Strawberry Island.
The strategy plays a role in the section between the bridge and the turnaround at the end of Strawberry.
Following the race was a chance to demo some boats from Valley Kayaks and few other vendors,including Body Boat Blade, It was really cool to meet Leon and Shawna in person,after seeing them in the This Is the Sea videos time and time again.
And then lunch,which was delicious especially after the race.
At the end, I placed 18th out of 45 in my Sea Kayak class.
It was a great time had by all, before the race,during and after. I highly recommend the event :)
I attached some photos taken by Caitlin, and here is links to photos of other photographers :
https://picasaweb.google.com/ASeanWatso ... ssDash2011
http://www.garyluhm.net/lightroomwebstu ... _fourstar/
http://robcasey.photoshelter.com/galler ... 5QlwARnivM


Attachments:
carrying boat to water.JPG
carrying boat to water.JPG [ 231.93 KiB | Viewed 1064 times ]
starting grid.JPG
starting grid.JPG [ 208.62 KiB | Viewed 1064 times ]
swarm.JPG
swarm.JPG [ 73.84 KiB | Viewed 1064 times ]
eddy action.JPG
eddy action.JPG [ 175.11 KiB | Viewed 1064 times ]
eddy 1.JPG
eddy 1.JPG [ 160.9 KiB | Viewed 1064 times ]
eddy 2.JPG
eddy 2.JPG [ 173.12 KiB | Viewed 1064 times ]
me hugging the eddy.JPG
me hugging the eddy.JPG [ 145.2 KiB | Viewed 1064 times ]
crux move.JPG
crux move.JPG [ 106.09 KiB | Viewed 1064 times ]
Setsuko and 2 others.JPG
Setsuko and 2 others.JPG [ 111.01 KiB | Viewed 1064 times ]
boats coming through Canoe pass.JPG
boats coming through Canoe pass.JPG [ 114.97 KiB | Viewed 1064 times ]
Me,chatham 18 and surfski in canoe pass.JPG
Me,chatham 18 and surfski in canoe pass.JPG [ 114.94 KiB | Viewed 1064 times ]
Setsuko going through canoe pass.JPG
Setsuko going through canoe pass.JPG [ 72.45 KiB | Viewed 1064 times ]
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 Post subject: Re: Deception Pass Dash
Unread postPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2011 1:07 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 18, 2010 2:04 am
Posts: 279
Location: Vancouver
Great write up and really cool pics :big_thumb


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 Post subject: Re: Deception Pass Dash
Unread postPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2011 11:19 am 
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Joined: Fri Feb 26, 2010 1:55 pm
Posts: 89
Location: Puget Sound
Great write-up of the Dash, Rider, hope you'll come down again next year! I regret that we didn't get the chance to meet before or after the race--it's always fun to put a live face to a handle from WCP. Thanks for mentioning the Coaster--what my high school football coach used to say, "they may be small...but they're slow", isn't true of the Coaster--they're surprisingly slippery. :D

Have fun on the water!

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 Post subject: Re: Deception Pass Dash
Unread postPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2011 11:20 am 
Paddler
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Joined: Tue Oct 03, 2006 5:00 pm
Posts: 940
Location: Lynnwood, Washington, USA
rider wrote:

The most unusual craft was definitely the homebuilt stitch and glue pedal-powered,prop driven trimaran,which went like stink powered by it's creator. There was also a weird aluminum-frame SOF double,which was aparently a soviet-era folding frame with a nylon skin done somewhat recently, in the list of competitors the boat was listed as "Comrade Lenin". Also done very well in the race. And there was a guy in the little purple Mariner Coaster who made very impressive time as well,especially considering the length of the boat.

It was great seeing you at the Dash Rider. The paddler on the Soviet=era double SOF is my dear friend Dave, a cancer survivor ( and still fighting) since last year fall. It was a treat to see him back in the boat.
Guess who is the paddler for that little purple "Mariner" Coaster...? Sorry, I did not have chance to introduce him to you.

Fun, fun day.

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Before taking my experiment as "good idea", ask Dan if it works!! I'm not responsible for your disaster...he he he


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 Post subject: Re: Deception Pass Dash
Unread postPosted: Mon Dec 12, 2011 1:13 pm 
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Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 5:00 pm
Posts: 423
Location: Burien, WA
Good to meet you and Caitlin at dinner at the dash.

The person who did the walking tour that you mentioned was George Gronseth, owner of Kayak Academy in Issaquah, WA.

I didn't race. i was a safety kayaker stationed between Bowman Head and Deception Island. There were a few SUP & sea kayak paddlers who had problems returning back to Bowman Bay with the outbound current from the pass between Deception Island and Bowman Head. Toward the end of the race, there was enough current here that it was turning the racers back to DP, away from Bowman Bay, and they started surfing the standing waves.


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 Post subject: Re: Deception Pass Dash
Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 2:49 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 11:54 am
Posts: 238
Location: Marysville, WA
Here's a video from that event. I hope to make it next year as I was unable to attend this year.


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