White River: Wamic-White River Bridge to Tygh Valley

On Saturday, April 19, 24 paddlers in 22 boats from two clubs (LCCC and Beaver Canoe Club) descended on the White River and ran it at 610 cfs. There were about four wood portages, including one long nasty one, but other than that the run was spectacular, the day beautiful, and the comaraderie wonderful. A big thanks to Ted Housen for once again organizing an epic trip. Due to the long drive, the portages, a flat tire on the shuttle, and dinner in Welches (el Burro Loco), many of us didn’t get home until around 11 p.m. But we all went to sleep with smiles on our faces.

Butte Creek in Springtime

Seven LCCC members did a low water run of Butte Creek. For three of the paddlers, it was their first time running this Class 3+/4 creek that goes through Scott’s Mill. In the past, we’ve always used Pat Welch’s guesstimate gauge to determine level, but there is now a USGS gauge at Monitor for Butte Creek. The level for this run was 6.8 feet, and as I said, low–as in bony. I’ll continue to calibrate my impressions with this new gauge. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to run one of my favorite rapids which had significant wood in the runout. First timers included: Karl Dinkelspiel, Chuck Wilkinson, and Bob Pool. Also on the trip: Denny Egner, Kendall Springer, Audrey Bergsma, and myself.

2014 LCCC Sweetheart Paddle

This year for its annual Sweetheart Paddle, the Lower Columbia Canoe Club actually went paddling on the lower Columbia. We put in at Lewis and Clark Park on the Sandy RIver, paddled out the Delta, taking the east channel out to the Columbia. Once on the Columbia we paddled around Gary Island, then headed west towards Portland, taking out at Chinook Landing. Eighteen paddlers participated in a variety of craft. A big thanks to Mary Ann Jordens for organizing, herding, and nourishing the group with chocolate cookies. She also took all the great portrait photos at the end of the video.

Lightning Lonnie Through Baby Bear on the Molalla

Last Sunday Denny Egner coordinated a club trip from the base of Lightning Lonnie on the Molalla below Copper Creek to just past Baby Bear. Level was 1630 cfs. Chad and I were in canoes. In kayaks, the notorious Pool brothers (David and Bob), John Maroney, Laurie Crabbe, Eric Lindenauer, and Denny. The level was a little low at first, but not bad. It was great for the rest of the run after the confluence with the Table Rock fork. The version of the video that is embedded here uses a song from Pretty Lights. There’s a version that uses a Jimi Hendrix instrumental (“Born Under a Bad Sign”) at: https://vimeo.com/89372375

Paddling the Salmon River (Oregon) in Tax Season

The reason for the title will become evident in viewing/listening. Last Saturday 14 club members put on to paddle the Salmon River at a moderate level (approximately 2700 cfs based on the Sandy at Marmot gauge), but only 12 finished. One took out deciding the continuous nature of the river, gradient (60 ft/mile) and technical nature was a bit much. The other took out just above the one rapid eveyone scouts after a swim left him on shore but his boat disappearing down the river.The boat was recovered two miles downstream by some kind souls living along the river. Denny found the needle in the haystack by spotting the person’s paddle in a log jam. He and I hiked back upriver with our boats and managed to recover the paddle. In the video, you’ll see two other swims–both on the one big rapid. I put these in to show that ours is not an easy sport and we’re all just between glorious moments in the boat and less glorious ones in the water. Of course, that might depend on your perspective. I’ve had swims that were as much a hoot as journeys down a rapid, but from a safety aspect, staying upright is preferable. All in all, it was a fun day down a river we don’t get to paddle that often. Michael Allender was our special guest, joining us on the run after showing his latest video to the club the night before.

Devil’s Lake Fork of the Wilson (March 2014)

A group of LCCC paddlers caught the Wilson at 4400 cfs and falling, an excellent level for running the Devil’s Lake Fork. Unfortunately, I caught only about 1/3 of the run before the rain shut down my camera. It has recovered, but there was much more excitement that I wish I could have caught on film. Nonetheless, this 3.5 minutes of video will give you a good idea of how great a day it was out there.
A big thanks to Bill Jordens for coordinating the trip.

November on the Bull Run and Sandy Rivers

Five open canoes and four kayaks caught a little bit of last fall color this past weekend. The Bull Run was at 400 cfs and the Sandy was getting beefy at 10.3 feet. Shortly after we got off the Bull Run, it started a fast climb up to 1900 cfs. Paddlers included: Ted Housen, Bruce Thompson, Bill Jordens, Robert Frisbee, Carl Poston, Ray Koleser (from Anchorage), Alan Douglass, Will Gehr (in a kayak!) and myself.

Catching the Upper Kalama During Hunting Season

When the gates are open, the paddlers will play. Not only was the LCCC on the river, but we ran into a pod of 15 other paddlers and then a pair of kayakers later–30 people on the river including our group of 13. In this video you’ll see Ken Keating, Bill Jordens, Will Gehr, Bruce Thompson, Ted Housen, Alex McNeily, Gerry Orr, Chris Watson, Kendall Springer, Karl Dinkelspiel, Greg Davenport and Jim Coker. To determine if the Kalama has enough water, we go by the flow of the EFL, which was running 970 and dropping. This turned out to be a great level with lots of excellent surf waves.