Saturday, May 30, 2015

Kettle River

Packrafting the Kettle River:

Launch for a multi-mile whitewater pack-raft on the Kettle River. Deathrider, Neil and I are the only players.

Seconds after the launch we group up so we can stay together and talk and enjoy the river together. Bridges are always a guaranteed launch site as well as take out. We know the take out is a canoe launch/landing many miles and many rapids downstream.
 Whitewater or Rapids are frequent but a little small as the water is too low for it to pile up into class II or Class III but we take what we get and have a blast.

Calm drifts between rapids are a time to snack and relax and secure anything that came loose or shifted the last time we got thrashed about in the waves.

 All the drifting is fine but a game of bumper boat is always fun.
 Crash into anyone you can or team up and double team someone.

Bumper boat is only played for a few minutes. You wouldn't want to break anything or flat a boat so we all grim up and get back to rafting and eating taffy.

 Playing in the rapids, holes, is a way to get the most of the low water. We find holes from time to time and paddle upstream to surf them and gain some experience playing in larger water.

 Below: getting into the hole.

We find a section of river that is bigger than everything else so we eddy out and hike up the shore to run it a second time.

It doesn't look big from this side but if you see Deathrider (center) he is about to enter a 3 foot standing wave (water pouring around the corner created a huge hole) followed by a series of class 2.

Something like 3 hours later we arrive at our take-out and have to ride our 'shuttle' bikes back to the car. Fortunately, pack-rafts stow well and we don't have to drive back to get boats like we do when kayaking with plastic boats.

So that puts us back where we started.