Monday, May 24, 2010

Weekend Update

Little Goose and Lower Trout Lake Creek.
Went up to run Kenobi Gorge on Sunday. I doubt this will be run again anytime soon, there is wood everywhere. Chewie and Sarlacc Falls both have really bad wood.
The wood in Chewie (as is often the case: all photos by Matt King)
The wood in Sarlacc. It doesn't look unrunnable here, but Matt assured us you would not be able to run this drop without crashing over/through a branch. With the wood in that hole, a less than perfect line would be very, very life threatening.
There is also a lot of other wood. Nick and I tubed this run last summer and none of this wood was there, so its all new this year. Looks like it will not be going anywhere as well. So after hiking our boats in and doing a bit of scouting, we hiked right back out. It was still cool to be back to this place, really a gorgeous place, with the area around Imperial falls being super unique. The walls are crumbling columnar basalt that is really pleasant to see. These walls are worth the trip on its own. I haven't seen anything like it before (except of course the last time I was here with Nick).
The rock cycle in progress.
The spring right next to Chewie is really tasty as well!
We still wanted to go boating, so Dan, Robby, and Matt headed for the Truss, while Shane and I headed for lower Trout Lake Creek.
I had only heard about one group of people running Trout Lake Creek recently, which is unfortunate. This run is a perfect next step up from the Middle White Salmon and a good intro to adventure boating. The run isn't very hard, but has quality whitewater without many dull sections. I was expecting "The Ledges" to be maybe III-IV, but they were solid class 4 and really fun! This was Shane's first class four in a kayak and he killed it! He was following me down, but I eddied out behind a hole and he kept going, probing the second half of this long drop. He hit his lines and punched all the holes perfect, nice work!
There are a couple drops that are hard to scout without going onto private property, but the owners were super nice and waved us over to let us know we could walk through their yards and even open there gates if we needed so long as we didn't let their llamas out. I won't describe the drops much because these are fun ones to figure out on your own. I was surprised by the many small horizon lines and high quality of rapids. Once the stream joins with the White Salmon, the flow doubles and there are some splashy, pushier rapids. All class three and fun. The geology starts to look like the Farmlands at this point, but the rapids don't get big. We took out at a bridge right above a lowhead dam on what I believe was Little Mt road.
Levels were just over 3.5 ft on White Salmon at Husum. I would strongly suggest kayakers who feel they are ready to do class four try out this creek. Just be polite to the landowners and try to stay near river level. Also know that portaging the Ledges would be near impossible on river right without trespassing. Even though the landowners have been gracious, river left might be a better option, actually, the best option is to just run them.
The other crew had a good run on the Truss, with Dan getting his first no portage descent, and Robby (less than ten times in a raft ever), ran everything except BZ. Matt sacrificed running Big Brother in order to set safety, but said the center would go well at that level, and had a good run in general. Dan decided he was running BZ whether anyone was in the raft with him or not. Now, BZ isn't a tall falls, it is just a really big hole. With most big holes, speed is a part of the plan, not the case this day. Dan's plan was to drop in, get surfed, have Robby or Matt (who was clipped in to the walkway) throw him a rope and pull him out. The first part worked (the getting surfed part), however, he was immediately pulled back in, flipped, then recycled a couple times out of the boat. Finally he balled up, hit the bottom of the river, then squatted off downstream, being under for half a minute without a breath. Matt gave chase to the raft, almost losing his paddle climbing into the raft, then eddied it out below Maytag and R1'ed it back up the eddy after retrieving his paddle and getting his boat into the raft. Saving the crew a lot of hassle tracking it down on the Middle White.
Dan redeemed his Karma at the BZ takeout, then we went back to Troutdale, then on to Monmouth. I finally arrived home at 2:30 after a couple more stops, long day.
Special thanks to Kait for helping drive, and spending the whole day following us around.
All photos by Matt King

1 comment:

心良 said...