The Guidebook

To visit the LiquidLore Guidebook, click right here. It's the starting point for all kinds of whitewater beta and the main reason this site exists - be sure to check it out.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Mid Winter Update

It's been pretty quiet around here lately. Don't worry, LiquidLore isn't fading away - even though we can paddle all year on the west coast it is still winter and there are other things to do instead of going and finding rivers to put in our guidebook!

Here are some random thoughts, and a report about a trip I took last summer, my third visit to California.

Big Silver/Shovel/Tretheway IPPs

First off, cheers to everyone who sent in comments about preserving recreation on these rivers. The response, particularly from people outside BC, certainly raised the attention of the proponent and the regulatory bodies.

Callaghan Race 2012

This winter is turning out to be normal, despite the threat of La Nina (which often means above average snowfall, like last winter). The race will be held around the same time as the previous years (late July) and will probably offer up similar or lower levels then the last 2 years. It's really impossible to speculate what the level will be when considering spring weather, how much more snow we get over the next month and the weather in the week leading up to the race.

California 2011

I've been to California several times to go kayaking, however any time I've been there it has been later in their runoff season and I've never had a chance to paddle some of the 'early season' runs. Due to a record setting snowpack last winter many of the runs that flow in May/early June didn't come in until late June/July meaning that a trip where we hoped to paddle some of the classic grade V multidays turned into picking off some of one day runs that are currently en vouge. It was nice as I didn't do any rivers I've done before.

This trip started off by having a quick stop off in Hood River for a trifecta of Little White Salmon laps, then rallying straight to Cali. In the first three days we were successful in smashing out the South Branch Middle Feather, Big Kimshew and the Upper Middle Cosumnes. The South Branch and Big Kimshew are classic runs. South Branch is as described in the glut of blog posts you can find about it on the internet. Big Kimshew had a lot more mank then I expected, but the core sections of whitewater are fantastic, challenging class V. I broke my boat there.

The UMC - beta for Upper Middle Cosumnes found here - is a good run, but I would not consider it classic. The granite portion of the run is only a mile long, and there is a relatively long paddle to the take out. This in itself isn't so bad, but it had (at least the way we went) a long shuttle, probably longer than the run was when it was all said in done. The water was a bit low, which might have tainted my opinion, but I wouldn't rush to get back on this one.

We finished off the trip by paddling a selection of runs in the American drainage, and the three day trip on the Middle Feather. I was dubious at first, but turns out it's a wonderful, relatively low stress V- trip (2800cfs putting on). If you think it won't be gnarly enough for you, just fire it up at high water. We also hit 49 to Bridgeport, another classic low elevation day trip. Work and severe poison oak stopped us from getting on the SF Merced, which just came in when we decided to head home.

Check out some photos from the trip, and the UMC.

A trip to California always fits well with a few laps down the Little White. This rapid, Boulder Sluice, is an outstanding boof.

Cody Howard runs the last rapid on the South Branch - even though it was late June, it was rainy in California for a few days.

A solid miscalculation on Big Kimshew, near the start.

A random bedrock rapid during the paddle in to the good stuff on the Upper Middle Cosumnes.

There are a few annoying portages on the UMC.


Philip Kompass, typical whitewater of the UMC.

Portage above Skate Park. Probably fine with a bit more water.

Skate Park.

Nearing the end of the granite mile, this small waterfall is named after the late Lars Holbeck.

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