“Sweet line man!”
“Yea, and I got on film!”
Every fall Next Adventure hosts the PDX Annual Kayaker’s Film Festival here in Portland, OR. Local kayakers and film makers submit their best 3-10 minute kayaking film in hopes of taking home the cash prize of $500. And after 10 years of quality submissions, the caliber of cinematography is breaching professional levels.
Held mid-November every year, the event doubles as a social event for boaters all across the region. This year a group of Payette locals made the journey north to visit friends, check out the new films and, inevitably, get a little rowdy.
However, the event is an ode to local Columbia Gorge kayaking. Several members of the Wet Planet staff, Lance Reif and Heather Herbeck, submitted accounts of recent kayak trips. The rest of us Wet Planeteers were there to celebrate these and other projects filmed on our favorite local rivers in Washington and Oregon.
Some of the highlights…
- First whitewater rafting descent of the soon-to-be-demolished Condit Dam on the White Salmon River
- Slow-Motion boofs at Boulder-Sluice on the Little White Salmon River by Hucking Huge film crew
- A member of the River Angels finally getting into the gorge by Heather Herbeck
- One man and the Truss section of the White Salmon River by Andy McMurray
- Tropical and steep rivers of eastern Mexico by Lance Reif
- PBR crew’s ballad to America and kayaking
- Femme 45 girls-have-more-fun montage
and MUCH, MUCH MORE…
But this year’s winner undeniably raised the bar a little higher.
The winner didn’t shoot an epic first descent. He didn’t profile the world record holder’s latest feat. And he didn’t celebrate the biggest beat-down ever.
Skip Armstrong, this year’s top PDX Film maker, stripped down all the unnecessary elements and showed everyone how truly beautiful this sport can be.
If you are a kayaker, you just have to watch it for yourself. And if you’re not, you will be soon.
So mark your calendars for next year. Or better yet, get out and take some kayak instruction so you can look as smooth as the local legends.