Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Surfing in Holyoke: A growing trend.

From surfing the web to surfing the river, Holyoke has much more opportunities than most people are aware of.

This afternoon Tim Lastowski (co-owner of True Resolution Photography) and I were out and about making photographs of the after affects of the over abundance of rain that the valley has accumulated in the first half of the week. It began with my idea to make a panorama of the Connecticut river from the Mass Pike. We pulled over on the Pike in order for me shoot the image below. I wanted to show the high levels of water that are fast approaching the edge of the levy.

Pano of Ct River and Holyoke_Chicopee

A short time later we were heading down rt 5 in Holyoke. Our destination in mind was the Oxbow. We were going to do some landscape images of the massive flooding that was bogging down the fields. Instead we noticed the influx of cars parked at the dinosaur tracks. This meant one thing. There were people in the river kayaking. Every year the melting snow and rain that we get brings the rivers up very high. Which also brings avoid kayakers from all over New England. Last year we met some people from Vermont and Rhode Island. This year, well, this year we met some very brave individuals who brought out their surf boards to catch the waves that the river was throwing out. Below are images made by Tim Lastowski and I during a few minutes of watching. We had a chance to talk with them between their trips through the rapids.

A very curious man stands watching the show.


Anthony Grassetti from Agawam, was the first person we saw to take on the waves. I was startled to see him heading out into the river. It took me a moment to realize he was on a surf board. DSC_0261 DSC_0155 DSC_0169 DSC_0203 DSC_0235 DSC_0237 DSC_0313 DSC_0322 DSC_0342

Joshua Copen takes a moment to sit and try and gain some warmth. Joshua explained to us that the water was frigid and that his suit wasn’t meant for the extreme cold.


Jeff Belanger was among the individuals who were kayaking through the rapid.


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Among the three whom we spoke with, there were a few other people out enjoying the Connecticut River.

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Copyright Jeffrey Byrnes and

These next photographs were made by Tim Lastowski

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There was even a tire out catching some rapids.

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Anthony going for a second spill.



Copyright Tim Lastowski