Idahoans With Whitewater Running Through Their Veins
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Hometown: American Falls, ID
Current Location: Hood River, OR
First Descent: Outlet Falls, WA
Erik Boomer is sitting in his kayak looking down on a calm pool that feeds into an 80-foot waterfall as his buddies lower him down with a rope tied to the tail end of his boat. The entrance to the falls is unrunnable so this is the only way he can get to the drop. Without a second thought, Boomer leans back and severs the rope with his river knife, sending him plunging toward the water. As he’s falling the 15 feet toward the pool, he leans forward and grabs his paddle with both hands. His first stroke plummets him over the falls. Aside from a cut to his head, he styles the drop. Calmly, and quietly, as if all this chaos was normal.
That’s pretty much how Erik Boomer, 26, rolls. He’s like an unassuming rock star, if that’s even possible. He’s a ridiculously good boater but talking big isn’t his thing (think Slash—the Guns & Roses version), going big is (think Robert Plant with Jack Johnson’s attitude). He’s been the first to huck monstrous waterfalls from Hood River, Oregon, to Michigan’s North Shore to Quebec. He’s been featured in countless high-end whitewater videos and been part of some fantastic exploratory teams all over North America. But still, he’s just an unassuming kid from Idaho, who learned to boat from a family friend in junior high when he was living in American Falls.