From Mountains to Cities
Team rider Brittany Parker loves whitewater and river surfing but every now and then she has a flat water experience or two that really captivates her. Here she tells us about two of those experiences from last season’s RVR 2 RVR tour with business partner and fellow Badfish team rider Natali Zollinger.
What I love about stand up is the places it takes me. It allows me to experience a place in a completely different way. Inflatable boards allow for so much possibility. I can roll my three-piece paddle and board up into a backpack, hop on a plane (for no oversize extra charges) and explore the rivers, oceans, and lakes of any destination.
In the Summer of 2016 myself and fellow team rider Natali Zollinger explored some of the most beautiful places during our RVR 2 RVR tour. Although rivers are our jam we had some unforgettable flat water experiences.
Washington D.C. is one of the most historic cities of our country and I never thought my first time exploring it would be from a board. We took Badfish’s inflatable and carbon innegra Hole Shots down to the boat house that serves as a storage, launch point, and prime sunset viewing dock on the Potomac river for many paddlers of the D.C. area.
Our boards moved freely along the mirrored river without the burden of traffic, tour buses, and swarms of tourists. To our left was the Kennedy center and off in the distance the Washington Monument. To our right the Arlington Cemetary. I careened my eyes upwards, observing the old stone making up the underbelly of the iconic Key Bridge. Washington D.C. felt peaceful, an impression not many have of the politically powered district. My impression of the city was forever changed after that experience and I have a strong desire to go back every year because of it.
Later in the season we found ourselves on the other side of the country in Oakridge, OR. Our friend Heidi Michele with Heidi Michelle Designs had recently moved to this hidden gem in the heart of the state. She urged us to visit, proclaiming it to be a recreational paradise. It wasn’t until she took us to one of the purest lakes in the world, Waldo Lake that we were really convinced this was a one-of-a-kind town. The lake’s waters are ultra-oligotrophic, meaning it can be compared to distilled water, making it one of the clearest lakes in the world.
Hemlock forests surround a scene straight out of a Corona commercial. Turqoise waters so clear you can see straight to the bottom even in some of the deepest of sections. Floating on our inflatables it felt as though we were suspended in thin air, our boards the only indication of separation between water and sky. It was almost dizzying. We floated on docks, sun bathed on rocks, and swam like mermaids through the dreamlike waters.
My boards have taken me to so many stunning places. I’m so happy Badfish has a board that I can use and enjoy in both rivers and flatwater, the Hole Shot is one of the most versatile boards in the line-up. It’s allowed me to immerse myself into nature whether I’m up in the mountains or in a bustling metropolis. As long as there is water there’s a a new adventure and a fresh perspective just waiting to be discovered.