‘My Home Run’: Discover Backyard Whitewater by Standup Paddleboard

Whitewater SUPing can be found nearly everywhere. It’s about your love for the sport, who you’re with, and a whole lot more that makes a river truly feel like home.

NRS’ “My Home Run” series is about just that — paddlers exploring and sharing their home runs (as in rivers). The latest episode features Tito Onyekweli and a run in Pittsburgh’s Stonycreek watershed.

“[Paddling] allows me to cope with life. Life is stressful,” Onyekweli wrote. “Being Black in America is really stressful. Having a place where I can just know that I can relax is like nothing other.” For Tito Onyekweli, that place is on the river.

“I am the kid who is still playing in the creek,” he said. “Now, it’s just with all this fancy gear. And I’m doing it a safer way, in the sendiest way possible.”

Some background: Onyekweli learned to SUP on the Potomac River. But now, as a student at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, new rivers like Stonycreek are his whitewater home.

Want to watch him get sendy? Watch the 3-minute film.

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Mary Murphy

Mary Murphy is the Managing Editor of GearJunkie and serves as the leader of Lola Digital Media’s DEI Committee.

She has been writing about hiking, running, climbing, camping, skiing, and more for seven years, and has been on staff at GearJunkie since 2019. Prior to that, Mary wrote for 5280 Magazine in Denver while working as an outdoor instructor teaching climbing, kayaking, paddleboarding, and mountain biking at Avid4Adventure. Based in Denver, Colorado, Murphy is an avid hiker, runner, backpacker, skier, yogi, and pack-paddleboarder.

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