1999 Moose Race

Waiting for for their start at the Moose River Race (l to r) Jeff Snyder, Justin Beckwith, and Mike Burns. Photo: Ken Beckwith

In a stunning upset at the 5th annual Bottom Moose Extreme Race, youngster Justin Beckwith edged wily veteran Jeff Snyder by 15 seconds to claim the Brothers Cup for the fastest overall time in the class 5 competition as well as first place in the Cruising Boat class.

The Brothers Cup is annually awarded in memory of Chuck Kern and Luka Sribar who perished paddling class 5 water in Colorado and California. Willie and John Kern and Rok Sribar-surviving brothers of the pair-are all long-time Bottom Moose regulars.

The result was particularly surprising because Beckwith, of Holland Patent, NY, finished the five-mile run in 30:20 while paddling a Prijon Taifon-a 13-foot plastic touring boat. Snyder’s time of 30:35 was completed in a fiberglass downriver kayak.

Beckwith is a highly regarded Nordic ski racer for Middlebury College and his training regime might have proven slightly more intensive than that of the 37-year old Snyder. Snyder’s effort was good enough for first place in the Race Boat division.

Shannon Carroll captured first place in the women’s division in a Prijon Cyclone with a time of 34:20-good enough for a fifth place overall finish.

The Bottom Moose Extreme race starts with competitors plunging over the 48-high Fowlersville Falls and concludes as the base of the class 5 Crystal Rapid. In between, racers negotiate six other class 4-5 rapids. Levels for the Moose on race day were 4.26′-a high flow.

Rok Sribar and Andy Opler turned in the best wipe-out of the day when they pinned their Eskimo Topo-Duo while attempting the challenging Alpine line at Crystal. The two self-rescued, but the nine minute delay dropped the pair from fifth to last place in the standings.

Chris Koll on rec.boats.paddle

PlaceFirst NameLast NameClassTime
October 16, 1999 - Bottom section of the Moose River, Lyonsdale, NY