Cliff Cave Park Ride – 5/30/2017

We decided to have a family bike trip. OK, Corvin was not there, but Danelle and Sonora were. I picked Cliff cave cause it has a nice flat lower section and though it would be nice and easy for all of us.

The first thing I noticed when I came into the park was that it was under construction. It was always a bit dangerous, but that was part of the excitement for going there. I didn’t get any photos cause I was driving and was in shock at all of the trees that were cleared. The cliff part that was always just fine was now labeled as unsafe/no trespassing.

Enough of the bad stuff. It didn’t take long during the ride to realize that we may not be able to go very far, the recent flooding left the park with lots of water in various places that would normally be dry.

In the photo above, there is a clear line in the trees showing how high the water had been during the recent flooding.

I’m working on my unicycle skills, so I decided to ride in harder mud filled areas of the trail to get better. They say if you’re not falling, you’re not getting better. So maybe I’m better?

Hogan Haake

South Dakota Kayak Challenge – 5/25/2017

The South Dakota Kayak Challenge is a 72 mile paddling race down the Missouri river. Danelle and I had previously completed this race and though it would be fun to do it again with friends. I borrowed a 4 person aluminum boat and talked Andy and Terica into joining us for the trip. We only had two training runs in this boat, but I was confident we would fare fine as we are all distance racing veterans. So off we went to KC on Thursday night with the kids to drop them off at my parents house.

With the kids gone, we snuck out early from the house for the remaining 5 hour drive to Yankton, SD. Along the way, we were passed by Rusty who was able to drive a bit faster than me. As luck would have it, we stopped at the same rest area for a break and had a nice chat before heading back on the road.

Like last time, we stopped at a high point to check out the course and get a break from the drive.

We were in contact with Terica and Andy during the drive, but they were a few hours behind us, so we didn’t wait for them. Once in Yankton, we unloaded and got settled. Our large aluminum boat sitting next to a more competitive boat…

Then I drove to South Sioux City, Nebraska where the race finish is. There, I would park the van and ride a shuttle back to the start of the race. I caught up with Terica and Andy here, always in great spirits!

After checking into the race, we led them to the The Riverfront Hotel (they were staying at the same one we were). On the way, we were bragging about how awesome the rooms are. For some reason, they were out of space and we had to walk to their other building, so we all took the hike together. When we got to Andy’s room, our mouths dropped. His room was $20 more than ours and it was nicer than my house. Oh yeah, it also had a walk in safe!

Saturday morning, race time! When we woke up, it was lightly drizzling rain. I love paddling, but I always prefer when its dry. I was worried it would be a miserable day of racing. But to keep things light, we had some laughs before the start. Danelle, Terica, and I all colored our hair. Andy said he would wear a wig if we brought one… He was a great sport and let us get a photo before putting it away.

The race went great. The team did a great time together and we had lots of hilarious conversation. Many paddlers were shocked when we passed them mostly due to our boat size. They commented that they could hear us coming but could do nothing about it. Needless to say, we had a fantastic time!

One other interesting note, I broke a carbon fiber paddle. I traded paddles with Terica so she could try out a shorter one and she liked it. So I started using hers and I called out a 20 count (20 hard strokes to get the boat and blood moving). On my second stroke I heard a loud snap! I looked down and realized the paddle snapped.

We were fortunate that we carried a spare paddle and kept going. We finished the race in 10 hours and 41 minutes.No one said that racing was easy!

We were too tired to think after the race, or we would have gotten a team shot, but here is Danelle and I the next morning.

Another fantastic race in the books for us!

Hogan Haake

Bad Haircuts – 5/21/2017

I let myself get talked into a bad haircut again. I didn’t loose a bet, I just wanted a colored mohawk to celebrate summer and the upcoming South Dakota Kayak Challenge. It started off with Sonora pretending to be a cat, and then a turtle…

We tried adding hair to Corvin’s chest to make a man out of him 🙂

Corvin decided to get his hair cut first. He eagerly took his shirt off and received a chopping from Danelle.

Eventually, it was my turn and Danelle decided to have fun with me. We went through several bad styles before landing on the last bad one.

An attempt at a traditional bowl cut.

The final bad cut…

Styled it was a bit better.

 

Eventually we got some color and it looked better…

Somehow we missed the family shot of the 4 of us with colored hair this time. Maybe next time I”ll pay for the bad haircut and then dye it myself!

Hogan Haake

Weldon Springs Training – 5/18/2017

We’ve officially signed up for the South Dakota Kayak Challenge. The team is Andy Clones, Terica Bergin, Danelle and Hogan Haake. We’re borrowing a 4 person aluminum boat from Bernie Arnold and this is our first training run. The plan is to paddle after work from Weldon Springs to Blanchette Landing in St. Charles. We’re fortunate that Terica’s mom, Sharon is providing the shuttle before the paddle starts.

I had heard that Weldon was a bit flooded, but ignored it figuring that it would all work out. The road stopped into water just after the Katy Trail parking. That left us a lot of flooded fields to cross to get to the water. It was decided by the team but pushed by me that we had a boat and could easily get to the river. So we decided to go for it. Sharon would wait 30 minutes in case we changed our minds.

There should be a road here to get to the boat ramp.

Terica is a bit camera shy!

Still camera shy, but I’m working on her 🙂

Getting to the river was a mix of paddling and navigation. Then the flooding ended and a bit of a portage…

Last minute gear check.

And carrying a 150 pound boat on a road.

Will the madness ever end?

Eventually, we got to the river and paddled all the way back without issue.  A successful training run with no serious issues. This proved the race was going to be possible and fun!

Hogan Haake