Sun shines on Ft. Langley Cranberry Festival Canoe Regatta – Gung Haggis places 2 teams in A Final

Gung Haggis dragon boat team places 2 teams in A Final at Ft. Langley Cranberry Festival Canoe Regatta.

2008_Oct 035 by you.The Gung Haggis Fun Cranberry team takes the inside corner to pass another boat.  Gung Haggis “rookie of the year candidate” Alissa Fletcher lead strokes our team, Jane and Keng in 2nd seat, rookies Brooke and Karl in 3rd seat, followed by rookies Marion and Ryan in 4th seat.  – photo Todd Wong

We arrived before 9am, and the temperature was just above freezing.  Fog hid the river.  But the sun came
out… and it warmed us.

We had 2 teams:  Gung Haggis Fat Turky and Gung Haggis Fun Cranberry.  We had a strong and enthusiastic dragon boat team this year.  Last year we 7 non-Gung Haggis paddlers join our two teams.  But this year, we had 20 current Gung Haggis paddlers + 3 Gung Haggis alumni.

It's a crazy race finale.  Put 10 voyageur canoes on the water – 100 paddlers.
Point them in the same direction up river.  Sound the horn.  drop pumpkins in the water. 

Paddle towards a pumpkin.  Fight another team for a pumpkin. Paddle under the bridge.  Take a 1.5 km loop.  Go around a marker go to the other side of the river, where a paddler jumps onto the beach.  They balance a glass of juice on their paddle and walk up the beach, before jumping back in the boat.  Go back around the marker, then under the bridge to the finish line.

Do canoes bump into each other going around turns, and along the straight-aways?  You betcha!

But first of all, each team had to race 2 preliminary heats: 2 laps around a 250m length with turns for a possible 1.5 km distance.

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Here's the Gung Haggis Fun Cranberry team showing good form with big reach. After lots of initial boat bumpings in their first race, they broke free of the pack in their second race, and finished 1st – sending them to the A Final.

2008_Oct 081 by you.
While Karl and Raphael walk up the beach balancing glasses of cranberry juice on their paddles, the Gung Haggis Fun Cranberry team tries to catch up to the Gung Haggis Fat Turkey team. – photo Deb Martin

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With Karl and Raphael back in the boats (look for a yellow vested Karl who managed not to get run over by the boat), the GH Fun Cranberry team blocks the GH Fat Turkey Team from going forward.  But really both teams need to turn right to catch up to the Pirates team, who finally bailed their boat that they tipped over at their beach landing. – photo Deb Martin.

2008_Oct 083 by you.

Free from the beach, Gung Haggis Fat Turkey team goes after the Pirates.  Tzhe in lead stroke, Kristine and Hillary in 2 seat, Joe and Stephen in 3 seat, Jim and Dan in 4 seat, Raphael and Debbie in 5 seat, Todd steers – photo Deb Martin.

2008_Oct 085 by you.

Gung Haggis Fat Turkey team catches up to the Pirates team on the turn, and grabs the inside edge.  They will effectly hold off the Pirates team and beat them to the finish.  The Gung Haggis Fun Cranberry team is still catching up – photo Deb Martin.

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