Membership & Introduction to Mountain Home
NEW PADDLER INFORMATION
Mountain Home offers new paddlers free paddling while you explore our club, practices, training style, and O'Hana. If you are a new paddler to outrigger and Mountain Home, don't be nervous to ask lots of questions. There are many of us who have been paddling for years and forget how many questions and concerns can be in the minds of new people on the water. Email our New Paddler Contact and ask about coming out for FREE. While you explore Mountain Home we'll be there to answer questions and keep you company on the water!
Monday 6-8pm, Wednesday 6-8pm, and Saturday 9am-12pm
McCuddy’s Marina, 2915 NE Marine Drive. Entrance to the marina is gated. Please ask for the access code and write it down in a secure place in case you forget it. The MHCC clubhouse and boats are east of the east dock ramp.
Sign a Waiver:
You will need to sign two waivers before you begin to paddle with Mountain Home: one club waiver, and one insurance waiver. Please protect yourself and help us to stay compliant by signing the waiver located in the boathouse. A waiver is located at the bottom of this page to print off ahead of time.
Restrooms are available west of the west ramp. You may also use them for changing, filling up your water bottle, or showering after a practice.
When you first arrive on the dock, find the USACK and MHCC waivers to sign by touching base someone. You will see several people standing around chitchatting. Don’t be bashful. Introduce yourself to whomever is near. There will be some scurrying about as paddlers prepare the OC6s for launching (bailing out rainwater and putting PFDs in each canoe). Once enough canoes are in the water, everyone jumps into a boat following the coaches’ instructions. Sometimes it’s all girls and boys or many times it is mixed.
In the cold winter months, wear layers as it may be windy, wet, and cold. You will definitely get warmer once you start paddling, but starting out warm is important. You can always peel off extra clothes so it is better to over dress. Try an under layer of some polyester fabric. Avoid cotton because it soaks up the water and stays cold. Your outer layer should be water and wind resistant. You will get wet, primarily your upper body, unless it is raining, then you may get wet all over. It’s a water sport! Neoprene gloves are great to keep your hands warm, as they will be coming into contact with the cold water. For shoes, try neoprene booties or old athletic shoes with fleece or wool socks. Bring extra dry clothes to change into after practice. When the weather warms, shorts, tank tops, and sandals are fine. Many go barefoot in the canoes, as it is tradition. Be prepared for any weather condition our great Northwest provides.
Carrying your own water is essential. A water bottle works, but most paddlers prefer hydration packs. The fanny kind is preferred because the back mount moves around when paddling. On longer Saturday paddles, you may want to bring along a power bar or some other quick nutrition.
Life jackets (PFDs) on the boats for every paddler are mandatory per Coast Guard regulations, however most paddlers prefer not to wear them unless the weather conditions are adverse. The Club will provide basic PFDs or you may opt to bring your own paddling PFD. If you are an inexperienced swimmer or can not swim, wearing a PFD every time you are on the boat should be considered.
The Club also has guest paddles available for your use. There are many ways to size a paddle. Ask a club member to help you pick one out. Once you’ve fallen in love with this sport, it would be wise for you to purchase one of your own. Ask a coach or other experienced paddler for their ideas on how to select one. You may even ask to try out different paddles that members own just to see how the different styles and lengths fit you.
Positions in the Boat:
There are 6 paddlers in each OC6. Seat 1 and 2 (front of the boat) are the strokers. Seat 1's main concentration is staying consistent, yet being able to adjust when the crew needs something different. Seat 2 works with Seat 1 to keep the momentum of the stroke and the rhythm dynamic between the two. Seat 3 usually calls the switches and or runs the boat, letting the crew know what is needed to push, power, change tempo, relax, and calls encouragement throughout the race. Seat 4 and 5 are the power seats. Seat 4 watches the ama and seat 5 helps the steersperson who is seat 6.
An experienced steersperson takes years to develop an individual language to their steering that makes a crew who they are. We recomment all paddlers try steering to better understand the water, current, balance and surfing to catch waves. Paddlers within the crew that understand the water through steering will be a benefit to the steersperson in all types of water, from a quiet river to even the most difficult of ocean situations. Steering is something every Mountain Home member is encouraged to try and on certain days we encourage rotating all paddlers through Seat 6 so that everyone begins to understand the responsibility entailed in this position.
Every other seat paddles on the opposite side of the boat for even power – so all odd seats paddle on one side while all even seat 5 numbers paddle on the other side. Every 12-15 strokes, the caller yells, “hike” – seat 2 will hell "hut" as everyone takes one more stroke and then switches paddling sides from right to left or left to right, maintaining the cadence of the stroke. If you are new to OC paddling – ask someone to give you a quick run down on how to switch – there are a couple of tricks that make it a bit easier. You will appreciate switching sides as it conserves energy and allows for equal development of both sides of your body. You may find that you favor one side over another but that will pass – the goal is to feel equally comfortable on either side.
After the Practice:
While it looks simple, paddling is a very complex sport. The stroke that is used requires a challenging learning curve. Expect your first time out to possibly be confusing and maybe even frustrating. You will be tired and sore from your newly developing muscles. Be patient with yourself and ask questions if something doesn’t make sense to you. We are here to support your interest and desire to paddle. Outrigger paddling is also a very fun sport with a lot of culture and history behind it. It will be more enjoyable as you become more proficient, so hang in there. It is a great full-body exercise and a social sport where a lot of wonderful people convene. We hope you will keep coming back to experience the fun side of paddling.
Equal Opportunity Policy
Founded in 1993, Mountain Home Canoe Club is a well-established club with a membership ranging in age from 28 to 60, free of discrimination and where diversity is valued. Our Equal Employment Opportunity Policy (here applied to Membership) ensures that all members are treated equally regardless of their race, color, age, sex, religion, gender identity or sexual orientation, national origin or citizenship, mental or physical disability, marital status or veteran status. The Board and the club committees oversee events, practices, communications, website and other activities to ensure best compliance with this direction.