Dave Demaree in sternA job changed Dave Demaree’s path in the boating world. It was a simple job, working in a field office for the Army Corps. But it made him relocate to the banks of the Savage and North Branch of the Potomac in Bloomington, MD. There, he’d paddle the rivers frequently, sometimes using the work truck for the Army Corps of Engineers as his shuttle.

After a few years working for the corps, Dave began a three-year stint as manager of Wilderness Voyageurs. There, he and his brother Dan guided a host of boaters down the Upper Yough, turning it from seldom paddled stream into a river famous across the country. And like so many boaters at the time, Dave competed in both whitewater slalom and downriver canoe racing. In 1978, Dave teamed up with Payson Kennedy, founder of the Nantahala Outdoor Center, to win the National Two-man Open Canoe Slalom Championships.

Today, he owns Demaree Inflatables, located in Friendsville, MD.