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I almost drowned today
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photonicgirl

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August 20, 2011 - 8:27 am
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I almost drowned yesterday in a favorite river spot. Not boating, swimming….at a boating spot.

I was playing in the current for about 45 minutes with a friend who is a very strong swimmer, and kept feeling cold. I normally would wear a wetsuit if the water is that cold but since it was hot at my house…I didn’t.

The current was strong, and the wave is higher right now. A little hydrolic was so strong it almost pulled me under. THEN finally, Mother Nature told me to get out of the river by totally cramping up my legs in the deep end, so hard that I had to hold onto my foot to keep it from completely popping my ankle out of the socket.

My friend Morgan, a very strong swimmer, was at the other end of the wave and there’s no way she could have saved me had I sank like a stone while holding onto my foot…I couldn’t swim, I let the current carry me around the bend.

The ONLY reason I am alive to tell this story today folks, and I mean that in all sincerity, is because I was wearing my PFD, which I always wear while playing in the river.

I was hypothermic, shivering with goosebumps when I got out of the water, and it took me about 30 minutes to warm up as the temps completely dropped then the rain came.

I will be offline for a week, so if you don’t hear another response from me that’s why. I wanted to post this to the paddling community because I know you can appreciate a near miss.

Jules

Peace, paddling, and yoga :)

whitewater girl

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August 20, 2011 - 9:29 am
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Yeah, both cold water & higher-than-normal levels can have consequences…and yes you can get hypothermic on a nice day in August (been there – seen others there as well…weird, but it happens)…

…glad you’re OK…stay safe…

BobN

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August 20, 2011 - 12:12 pm
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Dang, Glad you are ok. I also swim with my PFD on when in the river. Just makes things easier and more carefree. Hope you get better quick

mrod911

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August 21, 2011 - 11:48 am
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Glad you are ok, being close to the edge in the end teaches us something.

the river will always find a weakness no matter how small. i have the habit of barging in to a paddling group and tell people to wear a pfd when i see them paddling without one. usually they nod and think i am a nut. but i had to help a guy this summer from a kayaking group who ended up swimming without a pfd. he got creamed in a hole and it was messy but we got him out and eventually recovered his boat a couple of miles down river.

lets all take care of each other, this is the best sport in the world.

kbenjamin6

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August 21, 2011 - 6:16 pm
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Close call…glad you’re alright. One of my good friends went swimming in a quarry when we were 16…wasn’t there that day. He jumped off a 30 ft ledge into the water…very cold water…fed by an underground river…was 90* out. He cramped up and drowned…that fast!…you never know when things are going to happen…glad you’re o.k….

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photonicgirl

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August 29, 2011 - 12:00 am
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Thank you all of you. I just returned from a week camping in VT, and my calves finally unstuck themselves from the cramping. A friend gave me acupuncture which did the trick. This has never happened before and hopefully will never again, but I can tell you this, I didn’t swim across the reservoir in Plymouth, VT like I normally would to the rope swing this year. The water was cold, and I stayed close to shore. Lived and learned. Thank you for your stories and comments.

Jules

Peace, paddling, and yoga :)

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mattm

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August 30, 2011 - 5:52 am
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I take magnesium to help with cramping. Last time over in Montauk my calves cramped on every good ride while body surfing, but I had left all my vitamins home.

scagrotto

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September 20, 2011 - 3:31 pm
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[quote author=whitewater girl]
and yes you can get hypothermic on a nice day in August

I once read that most cases of hypothermia happen when the temperature is above 50º. When it’s really cold people prepare for it, even if they don’t prepare well. When it’s merely "cool" people don’t appreciate that it’s still 30º colder than the body temp at which they’ll die if somebody else doesn’t step in and help them.

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