Saturday, October 24, 2009

April 30, 2001 and June 17, 2005

More river journal:

Monday, April 30, 2001, a.m.

Well, right now I'm sitting at the eddy for the scout for Lava.  We did get up and out early this morning (on the water before 7:30 am) and then decided to hike for a few hours after we scouted Lava from river left.  We rowed over to river right and watched another trip run Lava.  One boat totally lost an oar and the paddle boat had a swimmer.  The rest ran it with little problem.  Our group is going to hike for a few hours, the idea being that the river will be going down (Sunday water) and the rapid will be a bit friendlier.  I'm not hiking because I don't think my blisters and my hiking boots will get along very well.

We did find an eddy beer this morning.  Good omen?

Monday, April 30, 2001, p.m.

Lava was fine.  A great ride with the biggest waves.  We had what I thought could have been three bad omens but everything went well.

The three omens were a big horn sheep skeleton, a contrail X in the sky and a lizard fight.

Writing in the moonlight ergo the messiness.  Camping at 185.  Peaceful calm late afternoon five mile float.

Friday, June 17, 2005

Camping at 185.5 camp - river right.  Nice sheltered area, fairly gentle eddy.  Steep drop off so the tide could be interesting.

Last night was horrid.  The eddy was so rough, it drove me to the beach.  I was so sand-encrusted I couldn't stand myself.

My old nemesis, chilblains, reared its ugly head again.  Probably from all the standing in the river barefoot.  I think I staved it off for so long by wearing my sandals and by wrapping my feet in duct tape.  Tai suggested that I put Bag Balm on them which only exacerbated the whole sand issue.  Today, I wrapped them in duct tape and wore bike socks under my sandals.  That worked pretty well.  They seem to be ok right now.  But then again, it is dark, so who knows?

I got out in the inflatable kayak yesterday and really liked it.  I played in the eddy for a very short time and then ran National Rapid ~six times.  Since I enjoyed it so much.  I decided to ducky the almost 12 miles to Lava today.  I ran two+ rapids.  It was fun but it was also a lot of work.  It got windy and I had to do a lot of extra paddling to stay out of the way of the rafts.

Now to Lava.  Steve ran third after Tom and Jason.  He had a good set up and easily missed the ledge hole.  However, we entered the V wave too far left and got pushed into the right wave which surfed us hard.  I watched the right front tube come up over my head and thought we were going over.  As the raft settled back down, I looked behind me in time to see Steve disappear off the side of the boat.  I looked at the rapid and decided I would just have to ride it out.  I saw we were wide of Cheese Grater Rock and realized that I had to get into Steve's set in order to get the boat to an eddy.  Just as I was turning around and getting up to do so, I saw Steve climbing back into the boat.  I have never been so happy to see him and told him so.  He got back behind the oars and finished the rapid.  All of this happened in less time than it takes to read about it.

After five more miles into a really strong headwind (not as bad as June 6), we arrived at camp for Formal Night, Phil's birthday and my last night of cooking.  Hot dogs!

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