Learning About Whitewater Canoeing

By: Ben Fischer Email
By: Ben Fischer Email

Kayaking has always dominated the whitewater scene. But canoes are rowing into the picture.

"It's just addictive," said Alan Burgmuller.

With every stroke of the paddle, the love of the sport grows.

"Something about paddling what are essentially canoes," Burgmuller said, from Hamilton, Montana. "They might be look a little odd compared to the the average boat you see. It's just the tradition"

But how does white water canoeing differ from kayaking?

"Canoeing takes more skill than kayaking because you have a big open hole in the top of your boat that the water keeps pouring in," said John Kazimierczyk, from Richmond, NH. "You have a single blade paddle where the kayakers have two blades"

"Kayaks are great," Burgmuller adds. "I jump in one once and a while, but, you can become a pretty good kayaker in a couple seasons, it takes a lifetime to get good at this."

And although kayaking is considered the more popular sport among many people, white water canoeing is actually attracting a younger generation of younger atheltes.

Like eleven year old Erin Achatz of wausau, whose paddling career is just beginning.

"It's really different cause you're up higher and it's one blade," Achatz said. "And it's just really fun to mess around, and you go a little faster, too. Someone hooked me up with this guy named alan, and he's a really great boater."

That "Alan" being Alan Burgmuller, who at 56, has also been canoeing since he was eleven years old.

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