This summer started very well with a trip to italy and Austria with new Levelsix Teammember and friend Casper van Kalmthout. Finishing study the week after I was up for a whole new adventure in a region of Europe I had never been to, Norway. I have to say all the things they say about Norway are true, yes it has some of the most beautifull rivers I ever paddled, yes girls are pretty and yes, beer is crazy expensive!
Starting the trip in Voss was amazing, the first day on the river Myrkdalselvi which is one of the best treats in the area. Not competeting in the Voss ExtremesportVeko (low on cash, uggh) let us paddling some of the best rivers in the area. Some good friends were made here, special thanks to Benjamin Hjort for guiding us here and further.
Next up was a travel up all the way to nothern Norway, some 10 hours drive to up above Trondheim. There are so many rivers in this area you won't believe it, it might just prove to be the next boating-mekka in Europe. With daylight 24/7 days are long and paddling a lot is guaranteed. Slides, waterfalls, big volume, low volume it's all there right at the road. The new Whitewater Norway Guide will provide some rivers in Northern Norway, definetly worth checking!
The Sjoa River Festival was a blast, starting with the legendary Pimp 'n Hoe (or however you spell it) party, girls dressing like boys and visa versa. You simply have to be and been there if you travel to Norway. Next day is the race, the prelims went pretty well taken in mind my headache and just feeling plain ill all day! The Ula extreme Race I was looking forward to, for I never paddled this infamous stretch, the Ula falls and Slides. Taking a surf during the race placed me somewhere down list but it was all good fun. Honza Lasko took a win here, as well as the Sweet Rumble race on the Sjoa River. A sweet event, visited by many paddlers and I ws suprised how many kayakers Norways has.
The last roadtrip went to many rivers, together with some other Dutchies and Belgium friends, going around the Fjords and amazing mountain peaks. I remember names as Stordalselvi, Ulvaa and the Rauma being amazing runs you cannot miss. The group was the perfect mix of fun, serious boating and beer, which the Belgiums brought plentifull. After five weeks of sun, rain, and paddling almost every day it was time to say goodbye. After a finishing party with a lamb (BBQ) and a paddle down amot we started the long drive home, with many perfect days in memory. Let's hope we can bring a playboat for the Eurocup in Norway next year and do it all over again!