We all woke up quite excited to be loading up all our gear to leave for a day on the river. Yes, it was quite chilly but nothing was going to dampen our excitement. Everyone arrived, some new to kayaking and some that have joined us in the past. Upon arriving, I was quite shocked to see the start of the river had no rocks above water.
We had checked the river flow gauge before leaving, and it read about double what we normally run it in the middle of summer. No big deal really, just not what we are normally used to seeing.
We started out slow, because we had one newbie along for this journey. Although, I must admit, he did really well for his first time, and wanted to try everything, which is normally not the case. When we arrived at a big rock structure that my son and husband love to climb to the top with their kayaks and slide down into the river, we asked who was all going to try this. All but myself and one other person decided this looked like fun. So up they all went and came splashing down with smiles across their faces!!!
The next rapid on this river is known as “double drop” because there are two rapids back to back. This is usually the rapid we spend the most time at when the water is warmer. We love to boogie board and surf these two rapids. Today however, the boogie board was left home due to the cold water, and I did not feel like getting too wet, being I was already shivering and had a lot of the river to go yet. So, my dear husband said he would assist me in getting out to portage and he would just ride my kayak through. No problem, all I asked of him was to try and keep my seat dry!!!!!. If you knew my husband, he enjoys being upright as much as he enjoys being under his kayak, so I knew the chances of my seat being returned dry were slim, but I had to make the request anyhow. Sure enough, he decided to try and surf this rapid with my kayak and with the water being much higher than normal, it did not treat him kindly. He ended up getting turned around and then stuck in a sucker hole that would just not release him.
Resulting in a flip, a water exit and needless to say, my kayak being returned with a VERY WET seat.
We then switched back to our own boats, and then it was my son’s turn to surf “double drop.” He did much better and did not get stuck in the same hole as dad did, so he did not have to go swimming at all.
Our next rapid on this river has beautiful scenery. You are looking from above a high rock cliff with this old broken down building in the distance. It’s quite fun to imagine what they did in such a huge mansion of this size.
This is the biggest rapid on the river, and is quite mean and furious if you do not have the proper experience to kayak something of this size. We do not do this. My husband tried once, it did not end well, and he promised me I would never have to watch that again. Now some of us do just the bottom half and some portage the entire thing. It is a great resting spot about half way to the ending and a perfect place to have a snack and reapply sunscreen.
All in all we had a great day, the sun was shining and everyone left happy and very tired. We arrived at the end take out and everyone got changed in the little hut they have at this particular take out just for kayakers.
This is the one thing that is sometimes a challenge because some take outs are on the edge of highways, and you sometimes have to drive home wet, or just be creative. We have a great plan when all else fails, but here we never have to go that route.
After changing we all eat, because you can not imagine how hungry a day on the river makes you. Our dining table is the tailgate of our truck. And you gotta love the Christmas plates I grabbed, I figured it was appropriate, because I knew the water was going to be cold:)
It was a fun day, with a fun group of people.
QUESTION: Would you ever try this if you had the chance?