The thought of a paddle adventure on these rivers would get anyone frothing but there’s no place for the reckless. My first sup journey experience was a three-dayer. My buddy Todd Lawson was the one who cracked the can of worms and got me and another friend, Trevor McDonald, instantly hooked. Paddling in the warm water was like soaking in a Jacuzzi after shivering in the glacier-fed rivers, and the summer weather made it sublime. It was not only a blast but a whole new challenge to combine our skill sets—skiing, mountain biking, climbing and surfing boosted our balance, but it didn’t add up to what was required to withstand all that the river threw at us. We were flung from our boards in every direction—the one skill we could have really used was how to ride a bucking bronco—and laughed at each other and ourselves. The rapids were Class 3, the campsites were serene and the pubs offered a couple of cold ones to bring back to our tent. I knew right then that this would become a big part of my future.