Monday, March 24, 2008

Wind River Race '08: III-IV+

Long boats, playboats, cats, and rafts all came out to race the upper Wind River on Easter Sunday.

Joe Stumpfel warms up his Wavehopper while Rob Virostek looks on.
Joe easily took 1st place with a time under 20 minutes.

Austin Rathman keepin' it real in a sea kayak while Nate Bell is rolling the Corsica.

3, 2, 1, GO!

The long boaters fightin for an early lead.

ORT coming in hot to the finish line.

All these rafts and no carnage?

Style points for pointing at the crowd while crossing the finish line.

Shootin' the shit after a fun race.


Long Boat Kayak
1st Joe Stumpfel 19:17
2nd Austin Rathman 20:04
3rd Nate Bell 22:06
4th Christie Glissmeyer 22:48

Kayak (Under 9 feet)---Times “rained out”
1st Greg Mallory
2nd Tony Skrivanek
3rd Rob Virostek
4th Jim Kennedy
5th Roberta Grant
6th Luke Spencer

Cataraft---Times “rained out”
1st Dave Hagmeir
2nd Zachary Collier
3rd Val Shaull

Paddle Raft
1st Oregon Rafting Team (ORT) 22:44
2nd California Women 23:17
3rd Bigfoot (R2) 27:09
4th ORT Rookies (R2) 28:55

Happy Easter... The PBR egg is crucial!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

The Northshore Project: Video by Fluid Groove Productions

Thanks to Cliff Langley and Joel Decker of Fluid Groove Productions for providing this glimpse into the whitewater of Minnesota and the Lake Superior region. This film features Devil's Kettle, Rainbow Falls, the Cascades of the Cascade, and much more. Spring is almost here!

Monday, March 3, 2008

Rock Creek, WA: Video and pics

Rock Creek, WA is a classic grade IV creek with a couple Vs and a couple optional portages. Sunday March 2nd we had an estimated 400-600cfs, slightly above the minimum. We were able to drive about a mile or two through the snow before we started hiking the rest of the 5 mile road to the get-in.

I'll kick it off with the vid.

Chris Arnold, Allen Satcher, and Eli Loper pondering the road after part of Chris's undercarriage ripped off.

Left, Left, Left Right Left. Eli braves his second hike-in of the weekend.

Runnable 35 footer - a little low for my taste.

The first major rapid - an 8 foot boof into a canyon.

Looking up at Heaven while standing at the gates of Hell. This series of ledges is a ramping 10footer(Heaven) and a sliding 25footer(Hell).

Eli and Chris scouting Hell.

An aquamarine colored hole blocks the entrance - at high flows it has a 5 foot face!

We all aimed for the kicker, but only Chris nailed it.

Paddling up to this waterfall is really cool when it's high.

The scenery is great, lots of waterfalls and moss-covered canyon walls.

3 Swims Falls, we portaged. This falls drops into a very tight slot.

Panther Creek into the Lower Wind, WA: IV-V

In its last mile before it meets the Wind River, Panther Creek is a steep boulder garden that has some serious gradient. It's compared to Gettin' Busy on the Little White and to a cleaner Trout Creek. The level was between 21-24" on the stick gauge which seemed like an optimal flow - some pretty chunky holes, but still plenty of eddies. Mostly boat scoutable with the exception of 2 or 3 rapids. Eddy hoppin', boulder garden steepness - it was really fun. Eli Loper and I put on just in time to catch up with Ryan Cole, Chris Arnold, Garry Truyens, and Eric Arlington - a good crew!!

Scouting the entrance to one of the steepest sections. Avoid small F-U logs, rockslide the tight slot of your choice, punch the big hole, repeat.

The second part of this section.

Chris catching his breath after some steepness.

Ryan boogying and enjoying the amazing scenery. Moss-covered trees, rocks, and mini-gorges characterize this section.

Garry enjoying some more good clean boulder bed.

Ryan snarling and looking hard with a bloody face. It's not all fun and games here!

Gary and Eli polish off some steepness before Panther meets the Wind.

Once we hit the confluence and got onto the Lower Wind there was some serious volume. None of us had ever seen the Lower Wind with this much flow before. The flume became a big water rapid with some huge breaking wave-holes. Beyond Limits was awesome - ride the tongue into a huge thrasher, then hold on for the next big one. Eli and I were the only ones who ran it and we both cleaned it. Shipherd's Falls looked insane.

Chris probes the Flume.

Beyond Limits with a fish ladder "sneak" on the left.

The entrance to the fish ladder was sketchy at best.

Eli probes Beyond Limits, rated V+ in the guidebook. Kind of like a juicy BZ Falls.

Keeping it together through the last hole.

The first falls at Shipherds is unrecognizable compared to summer flows.

The second falls is super burly at this flow.

If you survive this set of drops there is still a lowhead dam to contend with.

Garry probing the mandatory cliff jump on the portage.

Eric was happy that hotsprings were waiting just downstream of this swim.