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Interview with Tyerl Bradt, who recently ran the 186' (57 meters) Palouse falls!
Hi Tyler. You’ve managed to successfully huck the highest waterfall ever attempted by man in a kayak, 186 feet! Congratulations! Tell us about the preparation leading to such a monster drop.
In essence I spent my entire life training for Palouse. I started kayaking at age six and it certainly took every bit of my ability and concentration to run Palouse successfully. Waterfalls have been one of my focuses for years, this helped me build my experience, make a calculated decision and run the falls safely.
Why did you choose this waterfall exactly? Had you been eyeing it out for some time already?
The first time I saw Palouse was about four weeks before I ran it. Palouse is a unique waterfall as it was created by the Lake Missoula floods. Millions of CFS created the pool and canyon in a matter of days. The pool is huge and the lip is about as good as it gets. It is truly an anomaly. I have never seen a waterfall that big that looks so good.
There are many people out there stating that you’re simply crazy. What is your response to this?
My team and I have spent years researching waterfalls, honing in our skills and developing experience necessary for running something like Palouse successfully. It was not a mindless huck off a waterfall and hope you live type of thing, it was a calculated decision. The descent would not have worked out like it did otherwise.
Do you see yourself, or anyone else, running waterfalls higher than this?
The thing with waterfalls is that anyone can attempt them regardless if they are qualified or not. There are some crazy people out there so I do think someone will eventually run something higher. I hope they are ok. It is certainly possible to run something higher but I think the potential for serious consequences will stop the majority of people from doing it.
I hear you’ve been working on some specialized equipment to aid with running these huge drops. What can you tell us about that?
I am working on an invention that will allow us to run rapids and waterfalls without the fear of equipment failure. The paddlers on the top end of the sport are paddling on a level their equipment is not designed for. This is a step in the right direction to bring the equipment we use up to speed. I would have not been able to stick Palouse without the device. It is a safety precaution necessary for the paddlers running class 5+ when there is no margin for equipment failure. It will save lives. Keep checking out www.rev-inn.com for information on it coming soon.
What do you think about Felix Lammler's ‘record’ 2 years ago?
Your kayaking feats are an inspiration to many paddlers out there, do you have anything you’d like to still add to this interview?
I hope this does not inspire people to run high or higher waterfalls but to understand you can accomplish what you put your mind to. If you see something as impossible than it is. We all create our own realities and set our own limits. There is nothing concrete except for what you believe.
Thank you very much for your time Tyler! Good luck with your future endeavors and we look forward to hearing more about your exploits and also about your innovations in equipment design.
PS See also the upcoming 'Africa Revolutions Tour' DVD.