Jim Falls (WQOW) - A quarterly event allows a special
class to take place in Jim
Falls. A special water
release from the Jim Falls Hydroelectric Generating Station helped train
several boaters. Jim falls safety days, an instructional class offered a few
times each year, gave canoers and kayakers a chance to learn more about safety
in swiftly moving currents.
"As you work your
way up the progression of class one through five, and you start becoming a
stronger boater, safety becomes pretty top of the list."
Beginners and more experienced
kayakers and canoers were near Jim Falls under the old County Y Bridge Saturday, taking
advantage of a special water release at the Jim Falls
hydroelectric generating station to learn about safety.
"We do land basing,
and what we do is we just explain everything, and everybody has a chance to
work with throw ropes and do scenarios on land bases before we get in the
water. So then when we do get into the water, and a moving current, they know
what they have to do and they're a little more comfortable with it."
The American Canoe Association,
along with canoe and kayak club Rapids Riders help put on the Jim Falls Safety Day, which is in its 5th year of teaching students not only how to help
themselves, but others as well.
"I'm ok with the
self-rescue, so this is more that I'm trying to learn how to help other
"One of the biggest
fears beginning kayakers have, or canoers, is the idea of "What happens if
I swim in this moving current." And the goal of this course, the main
objective is to try and get people to feel comfortable outside their boat
swimming aggressively and defensively. Knowing how to do that properly and get
to the safe eddies where there is no current."
The event has helped educate 130
participants in its 5 years. They come from not only Wisconsin,
but Iowa, Illinois,
The special releases from the
hydroelectric station will happen just three more times this year. This was the
last beginner class being offered for the year, although there will be an
advanced course on August 18th.
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