Sunday, January 10, 2010

Yaquina River

We did an exploratory run on the Yaquina river this weekend.  It is near the town of Summit, OR within an hour of Corvallis.  The run started out with a nice 7 ft ledge that deflected off a ledge at the bottom.  We all ran this well then an immediate portage around a log.
           Just downstream was a set of ledges that Eric Almost ran, a good thing he didn't because it ended with a forty foot waterfall!  This falls may be runnable, but it was hard to see with all the brush, I might go back in the summer to check out the depth of the pool.  Following this were two large waterfalls, the first landed on rock and was about fifty ft, the second was an awesome slide to vertical that looked good except for a log across the lip.  We ended up having to portage this entire set of drops, which was a long arduous process, but eventually we made it back to the river right below the slide to vert drop.  We walked around wood for about fifty yards then put back in.  Below here the creek was all bedrock for awhile but was only twisty class III, it would be an awesome section of class IV with more water though.  We may have had a short portage in here, I don't really remember.  After this I figured the run was over and would be flat till the end, but whenever I thought this was the case we would find another section of class III-IV bedrock slides.  The longest drop on this run below the falls would have been very difficult to scout, with our low water level I was able to just walk down the bedrock to see the drop.  Eventually we were portaging a log and saw a horizon line downstream, we scouted on a trail on the right side and discovered a nice waterfall!  It was about fifteen ft with a ledge drop-land on rock lead in.  The main drop was super smooth and Chris dubbed it "Muddy Boof Falls" because he dried out in the center of it and hit some plant matter/dirt in the center of the drop and that caused the falls to be muddy for a couple minutes.  Also it was a nice boof at the bottom. If this was a run that was going to get repeated very often we might have whipped out the Thesaurus, but we were satisfied with the name.  Below here I don't recall any rapids and the logs started piling up.   There were probably just under ten in this section.  Overall we were approaching twenty portages.
            We had incredibly low water.  Just enough to be considered kayaking.  This run would probably only be a true run if everything was just sort of flood.  When Sweet creek is too high, this probably goes.  We had 450 in the NF Alsea, 1500 SF Yamhill, and 2500 in the Luckiamute.  You would probably want around 1000 in the NF Alsea, and 2500 in the SF Yamhill.  At flows higher than this, it would become very dangerous because of wood, but the runnable sections would be really fun at high water.
Thanks to Chris Arnold, Eric Arlington, and Josh Grabel for carrying their boats through the woods with me, along with kayaking a bit.  Also to Chris Gabrielli for helping with shuttle and helping us figure out portage routes.

1 comment:

Daphrenologist said...

Any chance you could shoot me some directions (Roughly). I live in Corvallis and would like to check it out. Possibly floatie parts on a hot summer day. Thanks