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Our Canadian Roots

Canadian National team paddler Stig Larsson and Canadian Olympic paddler Tyler Lawlor were tired of wearing mediocre gear with outdated styles. They wanted their own style and personality represented in the form of their own paddling gear and apparel so they started a company in 1997 that did just that. Since then, Level Six has been setting trends on the water and pushing the boundaries of quality and fashion within the paddling community. Stig and Tyler know what paddlers need and want and they continuously provide them, year after year, with their fix. Whether you are a hard-core, whitewater guru or a sun-soaking, beach bum, Level Six has what you need to get the most out of your time on and off the water.

Blog

RIVER HOUSE

October 01, 2014

After almost a year with the idea, we were finally able to get off in the first kayak rapids of the river of the house, the churches.
Crystal clear water at 2000 meters. share, including pines, rhododendrons and friends ..

http://youtu.be/ta_546g5gK

 

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Holiday Paddling Lesson

September 30, 2014

So again this summer I managed a little time to paddle during my holidays. Fresh out of a grueling month of work (2 trips to Asia in a month) and 2 weeks of Gelato and wine filled travelling, I met up with my friend Evans; got my ass in a boat and pulled of the shore of the Veneon River in France.  With the wet summer, this river, flowing in the Parc National des Écrins, was a nice shade of gray which contrasted with the evergreen valley surrounding it.
Lets say I was a little nervous, not for the up coming section (a class III fun boulder garden), but the one following it, which was said to be a "fun" class IV-V run! I wasn't in the best paddling shape ever and I was sitting in a rather small boat, well for my weight at that time! And, my balziness was also on holidays! The first hour or so was pretty fun, getting to know my boat and boofing rock after rock. After a smile filled hour, we reach the take out of the class III section and wondered at the next one. The word from our local paddling body was that it was a super fun, rather steep but no too pushy section.
From a Quebec paddler point of view, the next bit of river was a... learning experience... So I didn't have much experience with bouldery ever changing rivers. This one served all of that, and more! The first few moves were OK with rock boofs and multiple channel navigation, trying not to get lost. Then came the words "Integral siphon" and "must make stop". After catching an eddy way too high, I managed to get out of my boat and see what all the fuss was about. A house size boulder had fallen into the river and now, ALL of the water was being pushed under that thing. Yep, it didn't take long to decide and walk that part. Then we got back in our boats, with fairly evasive description of the rapids and continued our way down the river. After another must make stop, I turned around and watch Evans being swept into a different channel facing backwards! Under 5 seconds I was out of my boat running and jumping from one boulder to the other hoping that no other integral siphon existed on that stretch. After a rather nerve raking 2 minutes, we found Evans stopped on a rock laughing at how he ran the section backwards!
We could then resume our holiday paddle and face another rather steep section (that I walked), filled with under cuts and unconvincing rock boofs. We finally lined up for the last bit, where our guide told us he didn't remembered the line, since "it changes all the time"! I finished it gracefully with my boat half sunk under a rock and almost loosing my paddle with the story of a guy who rolled on that stretch and ended up with 22 stitches playing in the back of my mind!
Once you think you're doing pretty good on your home rivers, it never hurts to go see elsewhere! The ever evolving rivers of the Alps just add another layer of challenge to running class V. Instead of just trying to stay on line and nail your boofs and leans, you also have to stay aware of the undercuts and possible new features and siphons.           

   

 

Yours truly not so sure about the up coming section!

Rock boofing the entry to the steep section of the Veneon

Hitting a rock and almost loosing my paddle

Carefully navigating the multiple channels in between boulders

Round 2 on the fun section at the end of the day

Feeling a little more relaxed and confident



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Double Action

September 27, 2014

Maybe I am a bit late boarding this train but recently I have found a serious love for double kayaks. A friend of mine had been grilling me all summer about teaching her to whitewater kayak. Everyday's conversation started with, "So when are we going to go kayaking?" Having worked every single day this summer (as guides do), the last thing I wanted to do was to teach someone to kayak on a day off. But with her 'through the roof' level of enthusiasm coinciding with a weak moment on my part- I promised her we would go before the end of the summer. 

So, I sent her a text with a time and a place... she wet her pants with excitement and we were off! We got to the put in of the Kananaskis River, I gave her some Level Six gear to look cool and stay warm, then we got on the river and did some successful practice rolls.

 

Well accept for that roll... Yeah we both earned a booty beer that day (note how she is still a 10 on the stoke-O-meter). Anyway, we had so much fun- me trying to drench her in any wave I could find, and her screaming before every wave she hit!

  

We also had a good time watching our buddy/ safety boater/ photographer paddle through some 'honkin' waves' as she called them.

After our two runs down the Kan, we surfed the bottom hole a few times where we finished off her day with a swim.  Even though she didn't exactly learn to kayak like she though, she said it was way better than she could have imagined. Also, I had no idea that dynamic duo's were so responsive and easy to steer! They are a great way to get someone introduced to the sport without having to spend time in a pool or on a lake.

 

Anyway, at the end of the two laps I had to sneak some time in for myself and I finished off my day with one more lap and some soul surfing! 

Happy Paddling!

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Canadian R6 Rafting Championships

September 26, 2014

Canadian Rafting Championship 2014 from Jean-Philippe Paiement on Vimeo.

 

In between two work trips, I managed I little time off to get back to the river that saw me grow as a paddler. The Canadian R6 Rafting Championships were to be held on the different sections of the Rouge and I was mandated to cover the event with photos and video. I set out for these 2 days with the growing anticipation of trying to plan the shots and point of view for the different events.

The nervousness disappeared as people started gathering and getting ready to go on the water. At the same time, I realized that a LOT of people rely on Level 6 to keep them warm or dry or both when on the water. The 2 days went pretty smoothly and I am pretty happy with the quality of the pictures I was able to take and also a little overwhelmed with the 5 Go of footage I have to work with! Hopefully I'll be done soon with the event by event videos.

Cheers!

 

 

 

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2014 Korea Whitewater Festival

September 25, 2014

On Saturday, September 21st, the kayaking community of Korea held its first whitewater festival in Inje, Naerincheon River. We had Kayak Cross, a relay race, and silly activites such as a standing kayak race and throw rope competition. About 100 paddlers and their families participated. We enjoyed such an awesome autumn day despite the low water level.

 

 

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Gym Class

September 22, 2014

While the BC teachers were on strike, what was one to do with an active 9yr old..? A little biking was on the agenda, along with some hikes, but then finally when the weather warmed up we decided it was time we do some kayaking. 

For those of you who have taught children to kayak, you know it isn't something you typically push on the kid. You don't want to freak them out and have them hate it. It can sometimes be a very slow and long process until they feel comfortable. 

And although I have tried a couple times to get my own kid into the sport, I have tried not to force it. I figured if I proclaimed my love for kayaking enough, eventually she would take the hint and want to give it a go..... and success!!  

And so began our water themed gym classes. There was a lot of 'follow the leader', and a bit of 'I bet you can't beat me to that rock island', and a ton of 360's. Teaching, or should I say tricking, kids is super fun when they have no idea they are learning.

As we approached the last set of rapids (the biggest of the day) her stoke was high, my stoke was high, and all I wished for was all to be super stoked at the end. 

We both smash through the waves (the very cold waves might I add), and before we get to the end she screams 'that was turbo awesome, can we do that again?'. Phewf! We're all stoked.

We left the day wanting more... thank goodness for that because now I will always have a paddling partner :) And although the teachers and kids are now back to school, our gym classes will still go on because, hey, why not! Kayaking is 'turbo awesome' some might say!

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#levelsixgauley Photo Contest!

September 17, 2014

ATTN Gauley Fest Goers: Do you follow us on instagram?! 

Here's what we want you to do:

Whether you are on your way there, partying there, paddling there, or even if you went in the past and have some vintage Gauley pics - we want to see them! But only if you add in the hashtag #levelsixgauley - that's the only way we will see them! 

WHY?! 

How does a 75$ gift certificate to levelsix.com sound?
All for a hashtag! 

BE SURE to tag your pictures #levelsixgauley and @levelsix so we can see your rad pictures and ultimately pick one to win the $75 gift certificates! Share your pictures on Twitter and Facebook for extra points!

Oh, and if you don't follow us on Instagram, follow us so you can participate! 

We will pick a winner shortly after Gauley Fest!

 

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Jacques-Cartier Nord-Ouest

September 16, 2014

 

 

 

One of the most mythical sections of whitewater around Quebec is definately the Jacques-Cartier Nord-Ouest. Some people say it's Taureau's big brother. There is not a lot of infos about this section and only a handfull of people have been into this deep canyon. Every time we were running the Taureau, we were able to see this steep and deep crack comming from the west getting into the Jacques-Cartier at the bottom of the Taureau section.

Last spring,  we decided it was time for us to go in this crack.

 

We drove as far as we can in the wilderness and camp at the point where the road was not praticable anymore. The next morning, we had to get into the epic hike that made the reputation of the JCNO. 

 

The whole adventure was epic and we were all super stoke to be at the bottom of this run. It is a mission but definitely one of the sickest place we've seen. This river is the main tributary of the Jacques-Cartier. To paddle continuous class IV-V (full of sieves & undercuts) in that huge canyon for a whole day is pretty intimidating but an incredible feeling

 

So there it is, one of the rare videos of this mythic section, featuring a quick shot of the third descent of Landslide rapid,  some clues to reach the canyon and a lot of good whitewater images. 


ENJOY

 

Jacques-Cartier Nord-Ouest river from Quebec Connection on Vimeo.

 

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Experiencing more First Descents

September 10, 2014

I have done more kayaking for myself this summer than I have in the last 8 years.  I have ran waterfalls, boofed hundreds of drops, stuck challenging lines and 'ran the gnar', feeling stronger than ever.  And, as much excitement as all that arouses and as many "likes" as that gets on facebook, there is one thing that sticks out that surpasses all that personal attention . . . and, that is being a part in others' "First Descents".

The month of August consisted of me driving to Montana to lead my first "First Descents" camp of the summer; then, off to Salt Lake City for the Outdoor Retailer Show; followed closely by two weeks in Southern Oregon on the Rogue River for more "First Descents".  I never thought I'd be on the 'back end' of that busy August, but now that I am and have time to reflect, it consisted of the most amazing events of my summer.

Lodge on the Rogue River

It's difficult to sum up my FD experience this season, as each camp was unique in its' own way.  Words cannot even describe what goes on in the 5 days of an FD week.  We share laughter, tears, fears, love, meals, "love" notes, silly "awards" and so much more.  So instead, I'm just sharing with you a few photos.

If you would like to read a more personal write-up about this experience, please visit this website.  (plus there are more photos)

As I've said in the past, "you walk in as strangers and leave as family". 
"Lox" and I getting ready to make some money for FD ~ who do you think won?  Beach day and Rugby  FD family jam in Montana
Chilling in our evening "family circles"  Gearing up for a day on the river  6:00 a.m. surf session

 

Mrs R (me) and Mrs. Kemp (both nicknames)  Helping Lilo with edging  Sundance Kayak School ROCKS!

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2014 European Championships

September 09, 2014

From the 27th to the 30th of August, the European Championships took place in Cunovo, Slovakia. Best of European athletes stood there, ready to smell blood.

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Sungai Singor: A hidden gem in the Malaysian jungle

September 05, 2014

Where is MalaysiaOn our first trip to Malaysia back in 2012 we missed one river, the Sungai Singor. The last known full descent of this gem was done by the Tribe crew around Pat Camblin, Ben Marr and Andrew Pollock in 2009. They thought they ran the Sungai Mangga, which is just one of tributaries of the Singor. So we weren't sure what to expect when we started our trip, the shots of the Tribe crew looked like some substantial big water class IV-V in an absolutely remote area. So what if this really was just the tributary?

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spring 2014 destination pyrenees, between Spain and France.

September 03, 2014

It’s time to try the new canoe! we decide to go in the pyrenees, we start with the California stuffed with food and 

enthusiasm!

 

 

 

our first stop’s the french part of  the pyrenees, we don’t find so much water in rivers, but the landscapes are incredible and there’s wild nature everywhere.

 

 

 

During the trip we meet the second group of paddlers, some our close friends from past adventures, and we decide together to go North, Spain is waiting for us.

 

 

 

the pyrenees, wild landscapes, crystal water, we just been there and we’re already thinking about a second come……

 

 

have a good paddling Gigi :-)

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