Getting Ready For Racing

OK, I’m whipping myself into shape to paddle in the General Clinton this year. Due to unusual circumstances, I will have very little time to spend with my paddling partner. In fact, I expect to meet him for the first time about 5 days prior to the race. That’s when we will determine who’s going to be in the bow and how to trim the boat et cetera.

We will be paddling a Sundowner.

When ice out comes and I can get on the water again, should I spend most of my on the water time paddling tandem with whatever partner I can find…or would I be better off paddling my Prospector solo and leaned?

hey, Joe …
(whatcha doin’ w/ that paddle in your hand ?)

Who’s gonna provide the play by play if you’re on the course ?

“Time in the boat” is what’s recommended & better than time spent on shore, but I’d say sit & switch paddling would be much better training than healed over, j-strokeing.

I get together w/ a # of folks from Jefferson Co for some long paddles prior to the Clinton & will keep you advised in event you chose to join us ?

A’m Goin’ Down to Paddle My Ol’ Lady
ya know ah caught ‘er messin’ 'round with another man.

Play By Play & Paddling
As for the play by play…I don’t care if your Mama does it! I’ll even give her all my notes from prior years.

From the first time I went to do the coverage I have been enamored with the Clinton…and have been seeking a paddling partner for years. There have been a couple “good intentions,” but this is the year I finally get to do it.

It’s a shame, because I really wanted to enter in the Masters division, but now I have to go into the Seniors.

I’ll gladly take you up on the invite to paddle with you & some Jeff Co paddlers. I’ve already spoken with a couple as I continue to gain insight into the race.

I’m very impressed with your tune-up trip from Lows Lake down the Oswegatchie in a day. It’s not the paddling, but the carry at the end of the lake that sticks in my mind!

I may take a crack at duplicating it when my partner shows up in late May.

another option

– Last Updated: Dec-28-07 6:24 PM EST –

another option that would help would be to acquire a Wenonah, Sawyer, GRE or other sit and switch solo and practice with a bent by yourself.

Time spent J stroking a Prospector at a standing heel from a kneeling position might as well be spent in a bar. Neither will help with strength, motion or balance and both will have little endurance benefit.

Didn’t I see this same post or a similar
one last year?

Maybe it was for someone else.

I have never done the Clinton, but I have done the Adirondack 90 miler several times and the Suwannee 52 miler. -Both times tandem.

What I found is prior time in the saddle will make for a enjoyable experience.

“J” stroking just won’t get it.

You should pick up any partner that you can and then work yourself up to 35 or 40 milers doing sit and switch.

I had always thought I would like to do the Clinton, but after listening to several different pit crews talk about the early morning cold that every one suffers with and then the fact that you start out in the dark, finish in the dark and then everyone goes home without meeting any one else has kind of soured me on doing it.

It is a awesome race for the elite paddlers, but for us middle of the pack paddlers it doesn’t sound too good.

Have you ever done the 90 miler?

That is an experience that will definately call you back each year.

good luck and happy new year,


Hey Jack!

– Last Updated: Dec-29-07 1:40 PM EST –

Didn't think we'd be hearing from you for a while. Glad you found access to the 'net.

Hey Joe Lillydipper, pay attention to Jack. He knows endurance... on the bike and on the water. I know about endurance on a bike and a little bit about endurance in a kayak.

If it was me, I'd find a partner and go tandem if at all possible. Go solo if no partner was available.

Good luck!

Hey Jack, one good thing about the drought is I was able to set a personal best mileage record for 2007. Hardly any rides rained out.

Hey hey hey JackL
I have never finished the Clinton in the middle of the pack. ( Well maybe twice when I paddled with canunut) I always was in the last wave!

And I still want to do it again!

the Cold feet suck big time though…


I have finished
The Clinton 6 times in different classes and been there taking pictures, after doing the 18 miler, 3 times.

You don’t start or finish in the dark unless you use more than 14 hours. It is almost dark when the rec class start in the morning, but only once will I call it cold. The first half of the race is extremely fun (I think) with a lot of twists and turns. This is tecnically challenging and you have to practise doing these kinds of turns with your partner to use as little energy as possible in the turns. The energy will most certainly be needed in the last half of the race where you will meet a lot of shallow water. I have seen a lot of paddlers using to much energy and distance on that river because they could not steer the boat. My firs Clinton was in a C1 and I think I might have used at least 30-60 minutes less time with good steering tecnique.

Reading a river, finding the fast water, using the eddies as help for the turns, using hit and switch, having good paddles and a lot of hours in the boat will be very important. Use the time with your partner to find a good pace and learning to steer. Conditioning and time in the boat can just as well be done in a C1.



– Last Updated: Dec-30-07 4:31 PM EST –

Look on this site.
Tha lady has an excellent story of her race.

It might give you some insight.

Hey, that’s my site!

– Last Updated: Dec-30-07 7:04 PM EST –

Wow, thank you! That's my site. I was just about to post and say I did both the Clinton and the 90 last season. Both for the first time. I am definitely a "middle of the pack" paddler, although in both instances I was really at the end of the pack because of later starts and I'm just slow. I will be doing both again this year because I loved them both. The Clinton and the 90 are each valuable in their own ways. Both are challenges that I did soley for myself.

I can't help you with the canoe aspect, as I'm a kayaker, but "butt time in the boat" was the mantra that every experienced Clinton paddler gave to me. I found out they're right.

To the poster that said about the Clinton, "It is a awesome race for the elite paddlers, but for us middle of the pack paddlers it doesn't sound too good." Just my own personal opinion, but it's fabulous. It was worth every minute and every mile. I can't wait to do it again.

Susan (Scroll down a bit to see the General Clinton and the 90 reports.)

Cold !
I have always camped out and I always have had cold feet in the mornings waiting for the starting whistle.

Of course I live in North Carolina so I am not use to Cooperstown weather on Memorial day.

Jack in the Clinton
Jack (if you’re still online & not blissfully paddling away in sunny Florida), I think you’d do really well in the Clinton and would enjoy the experience. Most of the mornings I have started have been beautiful, calm with a mist rising off the lake. The course is varied & challenging starting with the twisty Swamp, the mellow upper river, the portages, the drops, shelves, and quickwater, and sometimes the long and shallow finish. But there are always paddlers to catch and paddlers catching you, and lots of people on the shore encouraging you. It’s not a boring race, and you’d have to be really, really slow to finish in the dark. As a kayaker I’m usually catching up to the C1s by the finish (I think they start first) and most of the pro-boats pass me around midpoint (they start last). But I think you’d really enjoy it, it’s something you should at least experience once, and it can be quite addicting. Besides, we need another Clinton kayaker! Pam