Jul 17 | The Art of Reading Water

by Andy Hinton

Andy Headshot 1“Running whitewater is not a battle but a dance.” Duct Tape Diaries’s newest contributor, Andy Hinton, poetically delves into the beauty and finesse of running the perfect line, and the time and practice it takes to master the art.

Scouting is not just about figuring out where to go, but also how to get there.

The river is cold and clear, radiating with hues of emerald green. As it cascades over small drops, ribbons of white bubbles rise from the depths, crashing, colliding, rolling, and toiling about each other before falling off a five-foot ledge into a narrow chute. The resulting froth surges and recedes with no semblance of order or sanity. Then it converges between two boulders and dissipates into a large pool.


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Jul 13 | Meet the NRS Kayak Fishing Team

by Mark Deming

Today we’re pleased to welcome four new kayak fishing ambassadors to the NRS family. Robert Field, Chad Hoover, CJ Siebler and TJ Strong have been strong advocates for our brand over the years, and as we prepared to launch a new kayak fishing apparel collection for 2016 (details coming soon), we knew it was time to make them official members of Team NRS.

Robert Field is President of the Kayak Bass Series, Vice President of Manley Rods and owner of YakFish TV; as a videographer, he has twice won the Kayak Angler’s Choice Awards for Video of the Year.

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Jul 10 | As Oarlock Turns Part 8: A Final Cup of Joe

by Kyle Smith

IMG_2592The final cup of camp coffee has been drunk. The last guest’s hand has been shaken. It’s time to de-rig, clean up, patch up, pack up and close shop. The snows that will fuel next year’s season are starting to carpet the Sawtooths, as Smitty and crew head for second homes. Wherever that may be.

The current slowly pushes this rubber craft downstream. This 20-year-old raft has seen more miles on the Middle Fork than I will probably log in my entire life. And, at this particular moment, we’re headed toward a smorgasbord of rocks to wrap, or at the very least, to booger upon (i.e. get extremely stuck).

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Jul 9 | North Fork Championship 2015 Highlight Video

by NRS Staff

In 2012, our friend James Byrd came up with the seemingly crazy idea to stage a kayaking race through the meat of the burliest rapids on the North Fork of the Payette River here in Idaho, including Class V+ beasts Jacobs Ladder and the Golf Course. Four years later, James and his wife-slash-partner-in-crime Regan have not only proved that it could be done, but they’ve made the North Fork Championship the premier whitewater race in North America, if not the planet. Sometimes crazy ideas are just crazy good.

We’re proud to support the NFC and the Melt Awards, (the pre-race media stokefest in Boise) and feel fortunate to have these events take place in our own backyard. See you there next year!


Jul 3 | As the Oarlock Turns Part 7: Don’t Feed the Wildlife

by Kyle Smith

IMG_2592Just when you rest your head on your pad, your muscles start to relax…Metal bangs, guests scream bear, and it’s up-and-at-em before a single snore can escape. Headlamp on. It’s the duty of the guides, the enthusiasts of the outdoors, but sometimes guide versus nature occurs more often than one prefers.

There I lay on my inflatable sleeping pad. Two inches of foam wrapped in synthetic material. My sweaty back makes contact. Sticky. Gross. I scoot the sheet over the exposed plastic. A sleeping pad and full-sized pillow are a luxury on the river. My lumbar moans as gravity relinquishes its grasp on my muscles. Muscles that have been lugging heavy boxes, tables, and sometimes small children when they fall out and under the boat, over awkward terrain all summer long.  Lying beneath the stars never felt so damn earned.

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Jul 2 | The Best of #Guidevibes | June Edition

by NRS Staff

The first month of the #Guidevibes campaign has flown by with countless images. Many of your posts awed and inspired us, while others made us nearly spew coffee on our monitors with unexpected laughter. To say it’s been difficult each week to pick one winner would be an understatement. It’s obvious that pro photography skills exist in the guide world, and we’re excited to say we’ve received more than 600+ submissions in the first 30 days. This kind of participation is beyond what anyone here at NRS expected when we launched #Guidevibes. We can’t thank you enough for taking the time to participate and share your life on the water with us.

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Jun 26 | As the Oarlock Turns Part 6: Luxuries of a Dead Head

by Kyle Smith

IMG_2592When the waters get low the crews cross their fingers, hoping for the decision to Dead Head. It’s one aspect of the job that makes low credit, negative 401K balances, and the lack of permanent residency all worth it. Will Smitty and crew score the luxury of a dead head?

The shade of the cool warehouse encompasses the pre-trip briefing, a circle of plastic lawn chairs, guest rosters and guides. The cold cement is a nice reprieve from the July sun beating down outside, terminating snowpack as we speak. The river level is dropping. Days on the water are growing longer and longer, as the downstream current diminishes bit by bit. My shoulders can feel it. Oarlocks are working overtime, pushing to make camp in a timely fashion. Each grunting backstroke tests the craftsmanship of our oars; dodging new rocks where waves, holes and hydraulics once resided. All a direct correlation to the falling digits on the gauge.

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