“(Rowing) is for the community, especially the youth community,” said Erika Bruser, speaking on behalf of the newly-formed group. “It fosters the qualities of leadership and teamwork, collaboration, physical fitness, and discipline. It’s an opportunity for youth in this area. You don’t get the same sporting opportunities as the city when you live on the side of a mountain, so this could provide some of that.”

In the wake of the 2018 Carr Fire, the Redding-based Shasta Rowing Association found itself at a crux. The organization was unfortunately a victim to the devastation in August, and having lost their store of boats, oars, and an outboard motor from their main building posted at the fire-ravaged Whiskeytown lakeside, they were left with an unsure future and little resources.

However, a group of enthusiastic Mount Shasta teens and their PE teacher were recently granted permission to create a satellite organization at Lake Siskiyou – thereby expanding the rowing association into new territory following the loss. Some of the remaining usable equipment from the Redding center was donated to Mount Shasta to aid in their startup of the club, including three training singles, three four-person rowboats, eight sweep oars, one set of sculling oars, a dinghy, and a trailer for use by the coach.

“(Rowing) is for the community, especially the youth community,” said Erika Bruser, speaking on behalf of the newly-formed group. “It fosters the qualities of leadership and teamwork, collaboration, physical fitness, and discipline. It’s an opportunity for youth in this area. You don’t get the same sporting opportunities as the city when you live on the side of a mountain, so this could provide some of that.”

Bruser teaches at the “I AM” School in Mount Shasta and she’s an experienced rower, having rowed and competed in single scull and pair in Australia, as well as single and double in New Zealand. She has been on the rowing scene for more than 20 years, from the Under 21 age group through to Masters. She has also rowed surfboats in both Australia and New Zealand at club and national level.

As of now, the rowing association is looking for high school students from ages 14-18 to participate as youth, and adults to participate as Masters. The Masters age group serves to provide a foundation to the club – supporting the youth through a committee, and staying fit with a group of fun, like-minded people.

Masters, contrary to the implication of the title, do not need to have any rowing experience to start.

For those interested, a learning day has been planned for the near future for youth and adults alike to try their hand at rowing.

The Shasta Rowing Association can be found at their website: www.shastarowing.org, and the Mount Shasta satellite club can be found on their Instagram page, @shastarowing. Bruser is also reachable by email at erikabruser@gmail.com.