The personal first descent is one of the most fulfilling experiences one can have on a river; no matter how popular or regularly run something may be, achieving a goal and running something new always feels like a great accomplishment. Leading someone down a river for their personal first is similarly awesome and gratifying. Looking at the river for all its lines and intricacies, finding the best places to set safety, being super diligent about having good communication, maintain a good group dynamic (smiling!), and assembling a solid crew ensures a great day on the river and makes for a successful personal first.
Last weekend, Anna Herring made her first descent on the magnificent Little White Salmon. A river that many of us know so well, and still we find so much pleasure passing through that canyon time and time again. Nate, Lucas Glick, and I accompanied her, with Lucas and I setting safety at a few of the more consequential spots (Boulder Sluice, Sacrilege, S-turn, Horseshoe), and Nate leading her through everything. It worked great, and Anna absolutely killed it. It's a mark of a good boater when they step up to something new and are more than ready for it, those are the boaters I want in my crew!
One awesome thing about going in there with Anna and setting safety, I was able to bring my camera, getting out at spots in the river I never have before and getting to know the Little White a little bit more intimately. Also, it was great to work with Nate and Lucas and line out the best rescue options for each of the big drop. Setting safety made for some sweet photo angles too, as you can see below. Most of all, it was wonderful to see Anna kill it and another fantastic day on the Little White.
|Nate Sluicin into the light|
|Anna's Sluice run after styling Gettin' Busy!|
|Nate digging into Sac|
|Anna Styling again|
|And she styled S-Turn|
|Airborn at Wishbone|
|Still Stylin at the mental crux; Horseshoe|
|Glick was fired up, I almost missed him boofing hard|
|The perfect crew (Oakland not withstanding)!|