Top 5 Capsizes
Over the years, we have had the pleasure of witnessing some funny capsizes on the river. The Bow River sits around 4 degrees Celsius over summer so falling in is definitely not something people aim to do! Thankfully though, every guest that capsized has walked away with a smile on their face.
Here are some of the most memorable ‘Epic Fails’:
1. Two guys out in kayaks one day were lining each other up and charging at each other using their paddles as jousting sticks. They flipped twice in the space of an hour but they were literally loving life at the time, not even remotely bothered about the chill factor.
2. A Russian couple that spoke no English tipped and somehow managed to get the canoe caught under a fallen tree. Parks Canada had to interfere to remove the tree. It ended up being a hilarious 2 hour rescue mission but the guests were laughing about it the whole time.
3. Blue Canoe staff member Kate Mee was marshalling the canoe docks when she had to go rescue two guys who were drifting towards the Bow Falls, as she engaged in communication with them the wind overpowered her and she was struggling to get back. Heroic Nick Palko ran down the side of the river to save her. He then jumped into the canoe, which had been occupied by the two guys and immediately lost his paddle in the river. So we had two staff members struggling to overcome the wind pressure and get back to land. Embarrassing epic fail by two “experienced” Blue Canoers.
4. Washing lifejackets whilst standing up, Harry Shuttleworth lost concentration, lost his balance and fell emphatically headfirst in slow motion into the freezing cold river. There was not a staff member upset at seeing Harry fall in fully clothed.
5. The father of Blue Canoe owner, Jonathan Welsh, was visiting Banff on holiday and decided to go for a paddle. Unfortunately, whilst getting out of the canoe he stood up, lost balance and fell out… on the river side. Thankfully, Jonathan saw the funny side to his father going for a dip in the Bow River.
Don’t worry though, capsizes are extremely rare and all Blue Canoe staff are trained Waterfront Canoe Instructors. But a dip in the Bow River glacial water is a story you won’t forget!
Submitted by Harry Shuttleworth