Telluride Inside… and Out take a half day off

Telluride Inside… and Out take a half day off

Water, water everywhere – and I drank plenty.

3 Musketeers On Friday, Clint and I decided to take a half day off from Telluride Inside… and Out. He headed off to assist on a Telluride Adaptive Sports Program hike with a favorite client. My fact-finding mission was mostly play: What's all the fuss about the river sport du jour, Stand-Up Paddling?

Bettie Hastings picked me up bright and early in her Mini convertible and we headed to town to rendezvous with our friend Susan Dalton at Jagged Edge. In summer, Jagged Edge is central ops for the Telluride Kayak School, where we hooked up with our instructor Andy Bagnall. On a cloudy day, order up Andy. I mean the guy is sunshine incarnate. He radiates nothing but positive energy juju.

Andy And he's not just a pretty face.

Andy was born to be a river rat. He grew up just outside Philadelphia in Amish country, hunting, fishing and kayaking on local waters. At one point in his life, he was an Eagle Scout, which is a good thing. Remember the Boy Scout motto? Be Prepared. That about sums up Andy's job description all day, every day, including Friday. Here we were, three never-evers all past our 39th birthdays headed for Trout Lake to try our luck standing up on a long, narrow flat board, nothing but proprioception and a paddle to keep us upright.

Susan D. And guess what? Thanks to Andy's careful instruction –  basic strokes, braces and edging,  but mostly, there are no rules SUPing – it worked. Well, mostly. Bettie never dunked. Susan and I? Three times is the charm, right?

Hint: Stay forward on the balls of your feet. Get back on your heels and  splish splash you are taking a bath.

They're Up! The goal: Take me to the river.

Bottom line: Despite our involuntary baptism, we loved the sport. Hope to be back out there practicing again soon.

Our recommendation: Try it. You'll like it.

Photos by Andy, Bettie and Susan (the other)

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