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My First Trip Down River



My First Trip Down River
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 3 to 4
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   3.07

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    Greeeaaat, kayakers, kayaking, keyhole, opening, portage, put-in, resistant, tipping, upright, confidence, kayak, swallowed, material, local, trailer
     content words:    First Annual Orange River Paddle, Race Class II, III Rapids Meet, Orange River Technical College Campus Saturday


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My First Trip Down River
By Beth Beutler
  

1     I saw this full page ad in our local newspaper:

First Annual Orange River Paddle Fest and Race
Class II and III Rapids
Meet at Orange River Technical College Campus
Saturday, June 15
9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Kayaks, Canoes, and Rafts welcome
$20 per entry

 
2     "Let's do it!" Tom said.
 
3     "Let's do what?" I answered.
 
4     "Do the Paddle Fest."
 
5     "Are you crazy? What do you know about paddling?"
 
6     "I know plenty. Just ask my parents," Tom said with a grin. "Just kidding. I never got paddled. But I have been kayaking lately."
 
7     "I didn't know that."
 
8     "My dad and I just started. It's pretty fun. We have an extra kayak. Why don't you join us?"
 
9     I agreed reluctantly. I'd been in canoes before. Once when I was about 12, we tipped over, and I fell into the water. Water went up my nose, and I also swallowed some. It was scary for me, so I never got in a small boat again.
 
10     However, I did not want to admit my fear to Tom. So I agreed to go.
 
11     On Saturday, I woke up early. Not because I was excited, but because I was nervous. What had I gotten myself into!?
 
12     Tom and his dad picked me up at 8:00 a.m. and we headed to the put-in. (I learned that a "put-in" was the place on the river where people "put in" their boats.) When we got there, Tom's dad outfitted me with a life jacket and helmet. Then he said, "Here, put this skirt on."
 
13     "Skirt?" I asked in shock. Since when do male kayakers wear women's clothes?
 
14     I soon discovered that a skirt was a piece of water resistant material. Tom came over and showed me how a skirt fits over your clothes and then attaches to the keyhole, the opening in the kayak. "That way, if you turn over, your boat won't fill with water."

Paragraphs 15 to 27:
For the complete story with questions: click here for printable



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