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Thread: Grand Canyon 1971

  1. #1
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    Default Grand Canyon 1971

    Hi Folks,
    I came across a digital version of this old film recently so have put it on YouTube in case others might want to see it. It is of the First British Expedition down the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon by Canoe, in 1971. It was filmed by Chris Hawkesworth and shown on television. I have also uploaded some additional footage taken by Don Charlesworth that I had not seen before. The quality and clarity is variable and generally poor! It seems to have deteriorated when uploaded.

    It is mainly of historical interest and many more impressive adventures have been undertaken since, but was pretty good in its day. It should be seen in the context of its time and the types of boats we were using; fibreglass 13ft buoyant slalom boats, as opposed to the modern, shorter, plastic, downriver craft. Those who know me now might have some difficulty in recognising me from a little over 45 years ago!
    Iím afraid we were mostly in kayaks (!) but for the obligatory canoe watchers our trip included the first descent by a C1 and a C2, as well as the first female paddler.

    The Chris Hawkesworth film is here:



    The additional footage from Don Charlesworth is here:



    I have put them together as a playlist here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...XFU9ETLYa4wK6o

    Hope you enjoy it.

  2. #2
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    Sounds exciting, I shall watch them later!
    Paddler,blogger,camper,pyromaniac: Blog: Wilderness is a State of Mind

    Paddle Points - where to paddle

  3. #3
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    Default

    Hope you enjoy them Mal!

  4. #4
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    Oooh - first saw this at a Rugby Canoe Club AGM sometime in the late 1970s.

    Then had my first visit to Symonds Yat, and the old boy (then Chairman) who took us down there regaled us with tales of a succession of drops with big standing waves... and got me expecting something similar!

    I learnt a lot about managing expectations from the experience

  5. #5
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    Hi Greg,
    Pleased to have revived some memories for you. I'm afraid that I've never paddled at Symonds Yat so I can't give you a direct comparison! However, I am planning a group open canoe camping trip along that section in the spring so we will see....
    In my experience, all of the many different types of canoeing, challenging or not, can be fun!
    Peter

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter R View Post
    I've never paddled at Symonds Yat [...] However, I am planning a group open canoe camping trip along that section in the spring so we will see....
    Symonds Yat Rock and it's surrounds, in the Forest of Dean, is delightful... or can be when it's not sufficiently crowded to resemble a zoo... and touring on the river gives a good vantage point.

    The so-called "rapids" are not really anything of the sort. You'll just find a delightful little stretch where the green flow speeds up a little, narrows a little and gains a few gentle undulations.

    With a little imagination, and arriving at the site when it's not overcrowded, you can use the flow for coaching purposes... but the more interesting bits of the Wye (including the vast majority of the best scenery) lies above Hay-on-Wye.

  7. #7

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    Cool films, thanks for sharing! It's incredible that was filmed almost 50 years ago...
    To want to, is to be able to.
    spelautomater

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