When you point your kayak over a waterfall, one generally expects to hit only water on the way down. Bouncing off rocks? Not really advised. American kayaker Chris Korbulic got lucky – and took some time to show us the incident, and the aftermath.
Of course, this was just a moment on one of the coolest first descents of all time – the first run of Papua New Guinea's Beriman Gorge. You can learn more about the adventure on Red Bull TV by checking out the Explorers Series documentary, Locked In.
One of many waterfalls on the trip
While Korbulic was mostly glad not to be injured (he came out "intact, smiling, thumbs up!") the impact still left a mark – on his boat. One that would take six-plus hours to undo. He and the rest of the crew had to get the dent out using only the tools they had. That meant boiling water to produce steam and heat up the plastic.
Hold on tight
Why did it matter? The sizeable dent meant less volume in his already smallish kayak, which translates to less float, shoddy steering, and overall poor performance. It also means a higher susceptibility to more permanent damage – the kind that could be very troublesome to deal with when you're locked in a canyon with that boat being your only way out.
Sound like an adventure? It is. See the whole thing on Red Bull TV.