Will Lamm, 20, has lived close to the Missouri river most of his life. So this year, when he entered the Missouri River 340, he felt pretty prepared for the rigors of a cross-state race in a kayak.
“We live real close to the river there, so I’ve been on the river for a long time in a boat,” Lamm said.
He first heard of the race at his job at Boone Hospital where he works in maintenance.
“We got on the Web site and started looking around,” Lamm said. “And I thought, ‘Wow, that’s something I’d really like to do while I’m young and I don’t have any obligations to anyone.’”
Lamm signed up to put himself through the grueling challenge of 100 hours in a kayak alone. Nonetheless, he is excited for some time alone on the river and is looking forward to seeing Missouri in this unique way.
“I’ve pretty much seen every square inch of river between Jeff City to about the New Franklin-Boonville area but that’s it,” Lamm said. “So I’m kind of excited to see the rest of the Missouri River and the rest of Missouri.”
Lamm chose to row alone, and in a kayak, for the sake of comfort. He says the kayak offers more back support and speed. He’s using a plastic 18-foot Wilderness Systems kayak, designed for longer trips.
As this is his first attempt to cross the state of Missouri on the river in under 100 hours, Lamm is realistic in his expectations.
“I want to see how well I can do, but I don’t expect I can win,” Lamm said. “But I really think I’ll finish.”