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Uncle Owen, this R2 unit has a bad motivator!

I’m a big fan of the R2. Two people, one small boat, lots of harmony (lots of swimming). Don’t get me wrong, I like to row. I like the sole responsibility of taking my boat through the rapids. I like the ability to carry more gear, beer and food than I can possibly need for my time on the water. I like being able to carry people who can’t boat and dogs that can’t swim. I like the feel of a floating ’74 Country Squire station wagon when I’m on any river for more than a day. But I also love the R2 and here’s why:

I’ve got a 12 foot Avon Scout. I can roll that boat up, stuff it in a boat bag and take it anywhere in the world. I can get it on the water before you even have your frame strapped down. At the take out, I’m off the water and on the road before you’ve even humped your cooler up to the parking lot. I love the simplicity. I love the simplicity. I love the simplicity. I don’t have to give a bunch of thought to getting on the river. I don’t have to weight the time and hassle of getting all my gear together against the small amount of actual river time. My R2 question for getting on the river is super simple. Am I willing to drive? Yes or no to that one and I’m either getting on the river or working in the garden.

The R2 time on the water is totally different from my 15’ Expedition time on the water. Am I gonna run Rainey Falls in with four days worth of gear, my girlfriend and two dogs? Not if I still plan on marrying the same girl. But you throw me and my girl in a little rubber sports car and we’re happy to sign up for the guaranteed flip & swim.

Here in Northern California the quickest whitewater to get to is the South Fork of the American and that trip can get pretty boring pretty quick. But shrink down the size of your boat and suddenly you’re on a whole new ride. The holes look bigger. You’ve got whole new tight routes you can take. Anywhere you see kayakers surfing, you can duck into the eddy and jump on the waves as well. And unlike a gear boat, you’re not all stressy about flipping. Heck, flipping’s just part of the fun. Flipping, swimming, it’s just like being a kid again.

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