Sunday, February 17, 2008

TR: Upper Wind River IV+-V

With Dan and Will still in town and a successful run down the Washougal with my wife we decided that we could step things up a little bit. After gathering some beta from the group of rafters that had hit the Upper Wind the day before we made plans to do the run. I was still a little nervous about Danielle going, but Will is a very good rafter and Danielle had the right attitude. With Dan's car fixed, we car pooled up to the take out which was still covered in 1 1/2' of snow. This was going to be a beautiful run. The water level was a little higher than I had run it in the past, but it looked good. We quickly piled everything into Will's truck and headed up the road to the put-in. We found 3'+ of snow, but easy access to the river.

Dan and Will getting ready for the Upper Wind.
Danielle getting geared up. (Thanks Will for the dry suit)
Will decided to run the raft as an oar rig today with Danielle adding paddle assistance when needed. I wasn't able to get many pictures as the whitewater was continuous and my camera is hard to get to. In any case, it was the best time I've ever had on the Upper Wind. I was a little fuzzy on the rapids so it turned into some of the best read and run whitewater I've done in a long time. I was truly amazed at how Will was able to move that raft. It was so much fun. Danielle had a great time and the scenery was incredible. The only minor problem occurred at Climax. The hole was a little retentive and pulled Dan back in for a second ride. Of course the raft couldn't see this so I quickly threw up my hands to signal the raft to hold up so they wouldn't drop in on him. Unfortunately that's all it took for an eddy monster to grab my boat and flip me into the wall. A took a hit to my back before I could locate my paddle and snap off a quick roll. Dan came out and rolled up.

Dan works on getting the raft down to the river.
It was a really nice day on the water and fun all the way around. Danielle has started entertaining the idea of future river trips. (Provided Will is at the oars) I'm looking forward to our next chance to get out on the water.

The water was just going through the horns on the gage rock
providing a nice medium/low level.
Danielle has a little fun in the snow while Will and Dan run shuttle.
You can also read Dan's write up at The Water Cycle and Will's at Tales from the Rio.

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