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Wednesday, 16 March 2011 19:45

First major paddling race of the season

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Watch world-class paddlers compete in both downriver and slalom competitions in the season’s first major competitive event on the Nantahala River March 26-27.

Paddlers from across the country will be compete in the Bank of America U.S. Open, which serves as a qualifying race to make the USA Canoe/Kayak team. Nantahala Outdoor Center is hosting the event, while the Nantahala Racing Club is the organizer.

There will be two events: whitewater slalom, where competitors must weave through a series of gates hung over the river, and wildwater racing, where competitors paddle down a section of river in the fastest possible time.

In slalom competition, competitors are allowed two runs of the course, which are usually paddled in less than two minutes each. The paddlers negotiate 20 gates and get a two-second penalty if they touch one and an insurmountable 50-second penalty for knocking a gate by more than 45 degrees, proceeding in the wrong order or passing through upside-down.

Wildwater racing features both a Sprint competition, where the course is 500-750 meters long, and a Classic competition, which could be up to nine miles long. In wildwater racing, all paddlers compete in one run, head-to-head.

Go to for more information and click on events.

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This Must Be the Place

  • This must be the place

    art theplaceMary Harper was quite possibly the first real friend I made when I moved to Western North Carolina.

    With my apartment a few blocks away from the Water’n Hole Bar & Grill in Waynesville, I ventured down there at night trying to see what was up in this town, trying to make some friends, and trying not to feel alone and isolated in a new place where I was unknown to all who surrounded me. Harper, with her million-dollar smile and swagger, immediately made me feel at home. 

    Written on Wednesday, 23 April 2014 00:00