Eneko Yarza Kayak

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RIVER TRAVELS:This blog talks about my travels around the world, as a passionate nomad kayaker and as a river guide.
VIAJES POR RÍOS: Este blog habla de mis viajes por el mundo como kayakista y guía de ríos apasionado y nómada.


Waterfalls TRUCHAS 18m + TOMATA 23m (MEX,eng)

@euskara                        @hispano

     --> Last mission to finish the Mexico 2010 Zorriak chapter. I came back to Tlapacoyan area in Veracruz decided to jump 2 waterfalls that couldn’t run the last visit cause an ear damage.

    --> I arrived to Aventurec campsite and joined with 6 Pyrenean kayakers (Eric, Bastien, Fafa, Thomas, Gael and Aniol). I didn’t have much time so after kayaking Alseseca Roadside section the engine was heated and the blood looking for an adrenalin shot.  


     -->      Dec. 20 we started the mission to run Truchas waterfall on the Alseseca river. Holed road trip, trekking through the jungle, rappel from a tree, cross the slippery river bed and finally we arrived to the pool above the fall, where the heart starts pumping faster. 

-->      Beautiful place and not much water. The rapid above the 18m fall was interesting too. Analyze the water movement, choose the appropriate line and I left first running the 2 rapid-falls straight. All good except I landed with a bit of angle and felt it on my back because there wasn’t much water. Next time I’ll go one with the water. 


      --> Chente the local boy was the next one: freewheel on the first drop and landed in Truchas with the face! Me watching it close. He is strong and all good. 
     -->     The next one in Truchas threw his paddle, leaned forward, took position like jumping headwards to the pool and went into the water like 2 parallel arrows the arms-head and the kayak. Flipped took out the helmet under the water, he grabbed it from the ‘gopro’ and made the roll with the helmet on the hand! Uau! I’ve never seen this technique before.  

-->      Nobody was hurt, and everybody can be seen happy in the photo: Bastien, Chente, Gael, Eric, Fafa and myself. With the photos Netta and Thomas. For celebrating, each of us ate a trout at Truchas restaurant, the one with chipotle being the hottest. 

Eclipse Solstice

-->      Dec. 20-21 night was special for terrestrial beings. A natural cycle finishing and a new one to start. Winter Solstice in the north hemisphere, the daylight is in the shortest. The Gregorian calendar we use in our society doesn’t take in mind this, it is an artificial invention out of the nature. The calendar should base in natural rules and cycles like our ancestors used to. 

-->      In addition, in this 2010 Winter Solstice we had Full Moon, special. And apart from that, from this Mexican side of the planet we could see a Total Eclipse of the Moon. So we were under the influence of various elements.

      -->      I couldn’t miss this appointment with Gods, and while the others were sleeping I was on Aventurec swimming pool watching the sky. The full moon total eclipse in winter solstice started, the shadow growing and turning red. Inside my mind visualizing next day’s 23m Tomata waterfall in kayak. With this I’d say bye to the kayak for a period of time, the end of a cycle and the beginning of a new one. After the shade of the earth the rays of the sunlight started directing to the moon and illuminating my eyes.  I am ready.  


     Dec.21. We went to Tomata 1 waterfall. Low volume of water, we knew it, the day before Aniol broke here a rib. Eric Deguil and I said yes.

     It took time to organize everything well. Bastien did the rappel and was down the fall kayak safetying. Above it Thomas and Potrillo with the video, Chente with photos. Fafa down to help going out the canyon before Tomata 2 waterfall.

     Eric and I are on river left viewing the line from there. In this moment I should have my mind right here, and I have it.   
                         Eric asks me:   -“Y tú con qué lado vas a buffear?” 
                                             -“Yo con la derecha, soy canoísta de derechas, jeje” 
                                             -“Yo de izquierdas! Jejeje”

     He goes into his kayak and tells me “Ahora o nunca!” (now or never!). ‘Ready’ signal to everybody. He is going. Left last. Throws the paddle. A bit separated from the water and a bit of angle. Pum! Hard landing noise. Didn’t flip. I ask him signalling: All good? And he: All good.           It's my turn.

     This is the present. My existence is here. Another visualization of the line and movements.

     The characteristic of this waterfall is that from flat water passes in 90 degrees to a 23m free fall. Difficult to control the fly, and with few water the landing is hard. For that reason I want to be with no speed on the lip; and in the fall one with the water, body forward and control the direction with a long right paddle overcoming the water speed; after that protect holding the paddle, tense the body stiffly and pass the landing hit like an arrow coming back to the horizontality.

     I’m going into my BlissStick-Mystic kayak. Something wants to explode from my inner tubes, but I’ll not let it. This is the fear for some. I think the victory of controlling the fear is what makes us addicted.

    I’m concentrated.                          Something asks me: Eneko, where are you? And I answer: Here
Eneko, what time is it? Now.  
Eneko, who are you? This moment. 
-->      I’m going to the horizon line. Back strokes loosing speed. One meter from the horizon line short left stroke with proper angle and body forward to overcome the 90 degrees. In a few hundreds of a second of this moment have to be taken all the necessary information, take decisions and react, testing the nervous system to the maximum. 

     --> Body and right blade forward searching for water. Eyes well open I see where I’m going. Wait, I’m going good. Wind on the face and dreadlocks on the air. Free fly feeling. Wait a bit more. Now! Right controlled stroke to the goal, my speed overcomes the water’s, body very forward and eyes opened; I’m going good, the landing soon; defence position: head inside, close eyes, stick the paddle to the kayak, cover the head with left elbow, and tense all the muscles of the body stiffly!
-->      I felt inside how all the falling movement passed to the horizontal forwards, and I surfaced straight down the river, but with not hit?  EXCELENT jump! And not feeling the landing hit, incredible.

     --> What was in my inner tubes before the jump exploded now, it has been a pleasure explosion.

     --> However this pleasure sensation lasted only for a single minute. Bastien and I went to Eric in the rocks in the middle of the river. Eric wasn’t feeling well, had big pain on the lower back.

      --> When we went out of the canyon to the road Eric fell to the ground. In ambulances to hospitals. Eric had broken a lower back vertebrae in many pieces, although the inside nerve tube was fine. He’ll be good after resting some months.

                      --> Viva Eric good heart champion!!

       --> Thanks to Toño owner of Aventurec and the insurance company Eric and I flew by an air ambulance to Mexico City. 

     From here Eric was brought to France by another airplane and I came to Brasil without kayak.  

     --> An Eclipse marked the highest waterfall we ever jumped. I was touched by the light, and for Eric was the shadow.  I don’t think we’ll look for higher waterfalls for now.  

     --> Beginning of winter… marked cycle change.  

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