by moconservation 1,856 views
See additional videos on our "MOwaters" YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/MOwaters Or for more info: http://mdc4.mdc.mo.gov/tv/handyhints.asp
Every canoeist manages now and then to swamp a canoe, so it's important that you know what to do. In fact, it's best if you intentionally swamp your canoe in calm water and practice the techniques you'll need. That's what I've done here. "Yeah, stick to that story, dad!" Hey! I don't need your help! Well, actually, I do. Since even a canoe full of water will float, stay with it. You'll be safer and more visible to other boaters. If it's upright, swim it to shore. If the canoe is upside down and you're in flat or slow-moving water you can stand in, raise one end of the canoe to the water's surface. Push down on the opposite end while lifting one gunwale to break the water's suction. Lift the canoe clear of the water, let it drain a few seconds, then roll it upright and guide it to shore. You can re-enter a canoe in deep water, but you will need to practice this. Place your hands on both gunwales (gunnel), near the wide section of the canoe, or in the middle of the bottom, depending on your arm length and strength. Pressing down with both hands and using a strong kick, lift your body upwards until the hips are across the nearest gunwale. Roll onto your back and sit in the bottom of the canoe before bringing your legs in...then use your paddles or hands to propel yourself to shore. If you swamp in swift current, get to the upstream side of the canoe, grab the end nearest the safest shore. Then staying upstream of the boat, use the rope to tow it ashore. This position will prevent you from being pinned between the canoe and anything it may hit. If you're thrown clear of the canoe, flip onto your back, and point your feet downstream to act as shock absorbers from any obstructions you might meet. Never attempt to stand up in swift-moving water. Your foot could get caught under an obstacle and the current could trap you underwater. Worry about catching up with the canoe after you've reached safety. Remember that life is always more valuable than property. You can replace the canoe. And don=t forget the basics: wear your lifejacket and don't boat alone.
by moconservation 226 views
Floating a Missouri stream is one of my favorite ways to spend a day off. Sometimes I fish, sometimes I watch birds, sometimes I just relax and truly "go with the flow." But the key to a great float is preparation. Figure out what you're going to need, and be sure to take it along. First...know where you're going! A lot of publications are available to help you...like Missouri Ozark waterways, a paddler's guide to Missouri, and topographic maps. Next, there's the canoe. Plastic ones often work best in our Ozark streams, since they are light and more easily slide over gravel and rocks. If you don't own one, you'll need to find a good canoe rental agency. Make sure your canoe has both bow and stern pull ropes. Now for the rest of your equipment. By law, you must have a personal flotation device aboard for each person in the boat. Life vests work best...but you need to wear them, and keep them fastened! Clip-on seats and cushions can make your trip more include a large sponge to remove water from the canoe...a dry bag or water proof bucket with lid for cameras, wallets, keys, first-aid kit...a trash bag to pack trash out...and a cooler for lunches and drinks or to store the fish you catch. Take steps to protect yourself: bring along sun screen, a hat, sunglasses, and wading shoes. And don't forget rope to tie the cooler and waterproof bucket to your canoe.
by MOwaters 67,818 views
My family loves to go floating. If you've never tried it, we can get you started. Most important: always wear a life vest...even if you're a strong swimmer. Canoes are unstable, so to be safe, stay low...stay in the middle...and don't move around a lot. Hold the paddle with one hand over the grip, and the other about 6-inches above the blade. Insert the blade near the side of the canoe and dig down until your bottom hand almost touches the water, and sweep back. As the blade leaves the water, flatten it like an airplane wing. Bring the blade forward...keeping it close to the water...and repeat. To move backwards, reverse the motion. To turn the canoe, use a drawstroke. Insert the paddle out in the water with the flat side facing you. Pull back with your lower hand. Reverse that stroke to turn back. Insert the paddle right next to the canoe and push away with the bottom hand. These are basic beginner strokes. The stern paddler needs to know a variety of strokes to steer...so put the beginner up front.