Thursday, August 19, 2010

annual Lewis River Trip

I try to get on the Lewis at least once every summer. It is one of my favorite runs in one of my favorite places. The drops are all large enough to be exciting, and there are just the right amount of large drops in exactly the right order. We started off this trip by driving up to Twin Falls. We carried boats accross the Lewis then up the hillside to reach this waterfall.  We looked at the falls from the lip. I took note of how the falls didn't create a boil and looked like I would expect a shallow falls to look. I wrote it off as myself misreading the water, since I had run this falls a few times before. I headed up to my boat excited to be starting the day with this sweet 20-25 footer. I hit my line perfect and launched out headed for a flat landing. Sometimes I get ansy in the air, so I decided to throw the bow down a bit for style. It worked, but left my back upright, which is usually not a problem for me when I throw the bow, since that motion takes away the impact. This time however, I connected with a rock 2 feet under the surface right under my seat. It definitely hurt and it took me a second to collect and make sure I hadn't injured myself. I then paddled back into the falls to check the landing. I shoved my paddle down in two spots, one was right where I had landed in "the boil", the other was farther stream right where I thought it would be deep. My paddle hit very quickly on both accounts and I waved off Nate and Chris.  We hiked down and got ready for the rest of the run. I was amazed at the change in the landing zone from the last few times I had run this falls. I had even intenionally plugged it once before and only lightly touched bottom. The pool has obviously filled in significantly and is no longer safe to run.
20+ feet till touchdown
We drove down to the trailhead near Quartz Creek with high spirits. I was unsure about how my back would deal with the impacts of the next few falls, but was willing to give it a go. We skipped the trail scout and took a look at Taitnapum from the lip. It was good to go. Nate and Chris fired the center (watch out for the rock lurking behind the vail, just waiting to catch your tail), while I went left. I was able to get forward at the very end, but still felt a bit of impact.
Chris fires up his tallest falls to date with a great line.
At this point I ruled out Upper Lewis Falls. We ran the next couple of drops, with only one violent piton to speak of (just keep your nose up when it looks like you should). We then scouted the first tier of Upper Falls, a unique entry into an 8 foot boof. Nate went first, and then Chris's boat went. I heard Chris yell "where's my boat", then "*&^%". I hopped in my boat to help Nate with the chase, seal launched into the drop and hopped out, only to see Chris's boat disappear over the nasty apacolypse drop on Upper Lewis. Nate clipped into a rope I was holding, and recovered the paddle. I then roped Chris across and we headed down to where a bunch of hikers informed us the boat had gone over both the twenty foot first tier, and the lower 35 footer. Chris took off running down the trail while Nate started getting psyched for the big drop on Upper Lewis. We roped him down, and there he was, all alone and commited to a pretty big drop. He looked stoked to be there though and I looked down with envy, remembering how cool it was to be in that spot. He got in his boat, slid backwards into the micro-eddy, then pealed out and dropped 35 ft down a slick ramp. He was really excited in the pool below.
Nate accelerates down the face of the lowest tier in Upper Falls
I saw his line and was pretty sure I could run it with minimal impact to my back, I also really wanted to be in that spot right above the drop again. So I doubled up the rope, and lowered myself down there. I followed Nate's line, dropping over this falls for the third time so far, having a totally soft and upright line. I was really glad I had run it. We reunited with Chris (who retrieved his boat minus the front wall and with a new dent in the front) and headed downstream. Shortly thereafter Chris was located with said front wall and we were back in business. The next section involved us getting out of our boats a couple times to walk across the wide bedrock channels in order to avoid abuse on our boats. One slot in here is very small, but goes. Shortly downstream was Middle falls, which we ran multiple times, and butslid as well. One of my favorite drops, especially with water, because it is large and super easy. Next was the low water fun down to Lower falls, this went by in about 20 minutes, then we were at the grand finale for those who so chose. After much deliberation, Nate stepped up to the plate. We set up some solid safety, then watched as Nate tried out a new line. At low water, there is a flake in the center of the falls that attracts a fair amount of the flow. Most people are concerned they will hit it, Nate decided he wanted to hit it. He hoped it would lift his bow just enough to kick him away from the cave on river left. We sent three logs over. The first pitoned hard on the flake, then fell over the handle bars into the pool below. The second did exactly what we hoped Nate's kayak would do. The third had three minutes of downtime... Nate decided to give it a go and set up for the run with a multitude of onlookers. He came off just as planned with the perfect amount of speed, dropped his bow and hoped the flake would do as planned...

Nate fires the biggen'
It kicked him hard right (away from the cave), he adjusted in midair and hit the pool in control. He rolled quickly against the right wall and floated out through the most exhilerated 50 yards of flatwater I have ever paddled, and I am sure he was feeling the same. Chris and I jumped off the right side into the pool to congratulate him. Then we hiked up and out, totally stoked on the day. Not many people run the Lewis as a run, mostly just for park and hucks, but it is one of my favorite runs in one of my favorite places. I highly recomend that anyone capable and willing to do a bit of dealing take the opportunity to experience this place from a boat. "Lewis river above muddy river" should be below 500 for the Lower tier of Upper falls to be maneagable (because of put in shelf), and lower falls to be sane. we had 350. -Jacob

Sunday, August 1, 2010

100 Streams

I'm trying to have run 100 streams. They are all streams I have done in a boat designed for whitewater. I am just posting to keep track of it and to motivate myself. These are not sections of rivers, these are different streams (ie. the farmlands, truss, middle, lower, and lower lower sections of the White Salmon all count as one for my count [white salmon])Probably going to be really boring to read all these to yourself, so pass on that and I'll try to get a real post up soon.

  • Sandy
  • Bull Run
  • Gordon Creek
  • l***** s****
  • Salmon
  • Zigzag
  • Still
  • Beaver
  • Clackamas
  • NF Clack
  • Roaring
  • Hot Springs fork
  • collowash
  • blister
  • eagle
  • rock (clack trib)
  • nf deep
  • fish
  • washougal
  • nf washougal
  • hagen
  • wildboy
  • dougan
  • canyon
  • rock(columbia trib)
  • ef lewis
  • copper
  • king
  • rock (ef lewis trib)
  • yacolt
  • Lewis
  • canyon
  • quartz
  • twin falls
  • canyon
  • ohanepecosh
  • nf cispus
  • yellowjacket
  • tieton
  • white salmon
  • trout lake
  • dog
  • little white salmon
  • summit
  • Hood
  • ef hood
  • wf hood
  • Eagle Creek (columbia trib)
  • deschutes
  • white
  • ---------50-------
  • north santiam
  • breitenbush
  • little north santiam
  • gold
  • Henline
  • South Santiam
  • Canyon Creek (s. santiam trib)
  • Quartzville 
  • Elk Creek (Quartzville trib)
  • butte
  • abiqua
  • little abiqua
  • silver
  • rogue
  • illinois
  • sf coquille
  • drowned out
  • nf mf willamette
  • molalla
  • table rock fork molalla
  • sweet

  • salmon (id)
  • snake
  • Owyhee
  • john day -------75----
  • grand ronde
  • Little Luckiamute
  • luckiamute
  • rickreall
  • yaquina
  • slick rock
  • Little Rock(near corvallis)
  • hunter
  • Willamina
  • wind
  • trout
  • panther
  • sunshine
  • johnson
  • wilson
  • jordan
  • devils lake fork
  • Wildhorse
  • milk creek
  • canyon(milk trib)
  • Grays
  • Thompson
  • Deep
unless I forgot some, then...