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.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Raquette Releases - Summer Action

....currently the only action in the Ottawa/NY/QC zone if you want to paddle a creek.

The Raquette is classic NY boating that runs reliably every summer on scheduled release days. The weather is always hot, the water is always warm and the rapids are always amazing. It's also a real resource for kayaking that doesn't see the use that it should.

The Raquette is good stuff - it's hard kayaking for the area - certainly one of the harder stretches in the north Adirondack zone (if you run everything). That being said it's quite accessible due to the short length of the hard stuff, it's usually warm during the release days and scouting/portaging is a piece of cake. I have seen many strong class IV boaters paddle the Raquette safely while having fun by going with a strong crew and partaking in judicious scouting.

A lot of capable boaters who are probably gone for another day on the crowded Ottawa or Black or Rouge or Gatineau are really missing out by not heading there. Grab a creekboat and fire it up!

The current process on the Raquette is easy - you show up and the river starts pumping 720 cfs through the dam at 10am - this hasn't always been the case and may not stay that way. Here's why, as explained by Chris Koll on NPMB:

"According to the license agreement, in order for a release to take place, a minimum of three boaters must notify the utility 48 hours before the release date. However, because of the consistent activity shown during the early years of the release program, the utility graciously simplified the procedure: on a release day it simply turns on the water and requests that paddlers register at the sign-in log found at the put-in.

Unfortunately, for some of the release dates during the past two years, there has been either little interest shown or paddlers have failed to sign-in. Consequently, there has been days when the water has been turned on with little or no documentation of recreational use. If the simplified—and much preferable—version of the release procedure is to be continued in the future, boaters need to better demonstrate that Stone Valley is a valuable whitewater resource by visiting the section (or making sure you sign-in when you do)."

I think this clearly says what the issue is here. Chris is a well respected member of the NY boating community who has been involved in all kinds of these issues over the years - what he says is the truth. Aside from it being fun, you'll be helping out the boating community out by going down to paddle a few laps on the Raquette - be sure to sign the register!

If you want to know more, click this link for the river beta and check out the Raquette video guide, put together by our co-conspirators over at Five2Nine. The first release is this Saturday, July 10 so break your plans and head for the Raquette. The five other releases are July 24, August 7 and 21 and September 4 and 6.

Liquid Lore - Raquette Video Guide from Five 2 Nine Productions on Vimeo.

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