Thursday, December 29, 2011

Little North Fork Wilson

Pete brought Andrew and I along on an adventurous trip into the Wilson river drainage Thanksgiving weekend, 2011.  It was a fun adventure, and I'd go back if using a lower put in.  Here is Pete's account of the trip.


Stream: The Little NF Wilson enters the main stem about 1 mile before the Wilson enters the Tillamook Valley.  The upper reaches are steep and wood ridden, only seek this out if you enjoy adventure boating as you will spend time problem solving on the banks.  There are some steep boulder piles that have some futuristic lines in them up there.

Lower down, near the confluence with Shadow Creek the stream matures and starts to become quality from a whitewater sense.  The best of the rapids are class IV, and there is a healthy dose of these class IV's.  The access situation isn't ideal, but the road-less nature of the stream is a big part of it's charm.
Flows:  We were there on Nov 27, 2011.  This was a good first time flow (low, but still worth doing at that flow).


There is another gauge to look at that is more similarly sized to the LNF Wilson than the Wilson and not too far away.  However, it's not in the same drainage so it is there to compliment the Wilson gauge, not replace it for guessing whether the Little North Fork Wilson is in.  This would be the Scoggins Creek gauge, and it was at 120 cfs the day we ran the LNF Wilson.


Access:  Take out at the Mills Bridge Drift Boat Launch along Hwy 6, at the confluence of the LNF and mainstem Wilson Rivers.  45.4718, -123.7391

To get to headwaters we drove 12 miles up Hwy 6 from the take out and crossed the Wilson on Cedar Butte Rd, which we followed for 2.2 miles, then veered left.  1/4 mile later we turned right, and followed this road to a bridge over the stream 45.5611, -123.6386.  It was tiny up here, and the first few miles were enjoyable in the sense of adventure.  There were a few engaging rapids, but also a healthy dose of portaging. 

If I were to do the run again, I'd drive 6 miles upstream from the take out and turn left on Coast Range Rd.  I'd take that 4.7 miles and use an old spur to walk down as close as I could get to the creek, then schwack the rest of the way to the creek 45.5253, -123.6855.

I recommend anyone doing this run take a look at a map and find the way that looks best to them.

Sunday, December 18, 2011


Anna stands guard over the realm of the falls.

We got on the Riverhouse and Dillon Falls section of the Deschutes this weekend.  Andrew came prepared with his new rear mount for the Gopro which resulted in some cool shots.

We all did many laps on the 25' dam at the put in which is a total blast.  This drop is really easy center right, but has a pulsing hydraulic on the left that is either a smooth ramp or sticky hole depending on the surge. There was an exciting moment when Nate got caught in this hydraulic, but a combo of composed surfing by him and Skip being on top of his game (especially for a non-boater) got Nate out of there safely without a swim.
Nate and my first run went as hoped.
Dualing Green Nomads

We did the rest of the run without scouting from shore (which would have been a pain with the thick brush and sharp rock) which upped the fun level fun.  Every drop was boat scout-able except one which we ran blind.  There were two others that wouldn't hurt to scout.

There was some good quality stuff in there.  This would be a great backyard run.

We then headed up to Dillon Falls.  Everybody was a bit cold, but Nate and I still decided to give it a go after various heating techniques were applied.

  Nate had a sweet boof line down the left into the fold, and I did a delayed boof in the center.
Nate with a silky line.

 We waited while Anna decided to join, she wanted to seal launch in below the falls and just run the gorge.  There is a notoriously sticky hole just below the falls that she was funneled right into the center of.  She was able to roll up once but after multiple ends pulled and swam to the right shore.  Her boat pinned on the left in the gorge.
Last breath of air for awhile.

Nate lowered me in my boat to a point I could connect another rope to her boat.  He pulled me back and we struggled getting the pinned boat to budge.  We had a pin kit in the car, but the ground crew was unable to find it.  With darkness closing in and no pin kit, we left the boat tied off to a boulder and headed downstream through the short remainder of the gorge.  We changed and by the time we made the short drive to Bend it was dark.
Nate and Andrew cold, but happy with the day.

We spent 5 hours getting dinner then off to our final destinations for the evening.

Andrew made a quick video of the two bigger drops using his Gopro mount on the back, then the normal use of a Gopro, then a final one of it mounted on a boom.  It turned out well I thought.  Here it is.

Riverhouse run Upper Deschutes from Andrew Bradley on Vimeo.

It was a long trip, but without water over here in the Valley its a worthy journey.  With many runnable sections, the Deschutes offers a low water respite.


Thursday, December 15, 2011

Third Person Mount

1. Remove all gear in the stern of youre boat and take off rear grab loop , nuts and bolt.
2.  We went to a Ace hardweare and looked around in nuts and bolts for awile picking out the things to use for the mount. We had some scrap sheet metal laying around that we used to connect the nuts and washers. Also it was used for the base and top of the mount where the gopro sits and the mount rests a square peice of quater inch tubing was used to get the height for the mount.
3. Welding the peices together we did not use stainless steel so we painted everything after it was all said and done.  The bracket that the mount connects to we spot welded.
4. Bothe of the pictures show front and back side of bracket we welded. We did this so the bolts do not have to be held on the inside when taking off the mount or putting it on the bolts will not spin on you.
5. We drilled the holes on the boat just alittle bigger so we didnt have to force the bolts in.
6. Measuring the hole distance for both the the mount and bracket.
7.  The flat part of steel that base started out as for the mount we bent with a rubber mallet to form to the outside of the boat.
8. As one person drilled the holes on the mount the other took the back piller out, to put the bracket in.
9. Holes are drilled for the mount put it on and bolt it down. Make sure every thing is done and set with the brackt you may have to bend it up at an angle to get the piller to sit back in its spot.
10. Foam piller is back in make sure it is snug and in the right spot.
11. If you are to set your boat up in this way I would recomend making your bracket peice very strong. The way we set it up is we can innerchange both the mount and the grab loop in a few minutes so you do not have to paddle with the mount for the whole run. Also using a pool toy noodle as a soft out side and leash on the gopro and to help the mount float if it is to get nocked off on the water.

- Andrew

   ~Andrew Bradley

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Black Rock: Under Crossed Polars

I had a team video project for school and we decided to make a film about a fellow Earth Science student Patrick Stephenson, and the Black Rock mountain biking area that he rides and builds at.  It was my first attempt at documentary style movie making instead of just eye candy (there is still some of that at the beginning and the end).  There is one kayaking shot of Matt King, then Andrew Bradley running Spirit Falls.  I know some of you are mountain bikers and have visited this place so you might appreciate it.

We will probably show it again during the academic showcase this Spring, so it should be a bit more clean cut by then.


Saturday, December 3, 2011

PDXfilm festival

As is par for the course for me, I wasn't able to go to the film fest this year.  I did spend an afternoon editing something for the blog, then figured what the hey, might as well enter it in the film fest.  I had some issues with the school network so could not come back and take this any further than a rough draft, so please excuse the cheesy, choppy introduction.

If nothing else comes from this video, realize there is still good stuff out there to be explored.  Don't be a part the 99% who have never run anything not in a guidebook ;)

Ok, two cheesy thoughts on one blog post is enough, here is the video!

 *Most of the footage was taken by Ryan Scott.