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Beaver Fest Part 2

Friday-Monday Sep 2-5, 2005
Participants:
Kayak: Rick Cooley, Simon Wiles, Cheryl Robinson, Jake Whitcomb, Chis Skalka, Bobby Pfister, Dave, Max, Jon M, John Bungard, Steve Graybill, Ed Clark and plenty of others
C1: Alden Bird, Joe Stumpfel
Difficulty: advanced WW
Level: medium
Author: Cheryl

My stomach churns, my hands are sweaty...I am thinking about running a huge technical drop...I am actually day dreaming. The sickening feeling is my car sickness taking a hold. The miles and miles of dirt road are starting to take its toll.

"Where the hell are we?" I impatiently shout at Simon "nearly there" he replies.

An hour later we arrive at the SoftMaple campground.

I am excited we have three days of solid boating ahead and it all begins here..

Taylorville

Si "advised a nice easy grade3" lulling me into false sense of security. I learnt early on in paddling not to read guide book descriptions. They are just there to scare you into not running anything other than grade2.

Our first run wasn't pretty. We were the first on the river and somehow three of us ended up in the same hole at the same time. One swimmer, mangled bloody knuckles and a good trashing wasn't a good start to the day!!

I think we even managed to scare some of the kayakers watching, who wisely decided to put in below the first drop.

The next drop...The slide..wow 30ft of pure pleasure only to be thrown right into a hole at the bottom...we survived this one unscathed and upright.

The next rapid ate me for dinner and spat me out with a black eye. It obviously didn't like the taste of an English chick.

The rest of the run we had a swimmer here and there. The whole run was fantastic drop, pool slide pool drop pool drop pool...play spot the perfect river.

We did a second run and revenged it big time, and we even ran the slot chute a couple of times for fun.

Afterwards I read the guidebook Dennis's description perfectly describes it.

While most of us headed back to Camp to lick our wounds and cleanse them from the inside with Alcohol. Si and a few others headed out to the Oswagatchie.

Day 2 Moshier

You know it is going to be a good river when your paddling with the likes of Freddie Corriel, Justin Beckwith and Alden Bird!!

Freddie wowed everyone with his grace and finesse by running a supposedly unrunnable nasty first slide, clean and uneventful.

First was a nice clean 12ft waterfall, which was great to practice the boof stroke and get the muscles warmed up.

The second a waterfall followed by two nasty holes...scary so I portaged!!

After a couple of grade 3+ rapids the Encore arrived a long grade 5 rapid...but where was the water?? Oops it looks like we got ahead of ourselves.

When the water arrived the drop was run over and over again...I watched from the bank...The lines looked fairly clean, I was tempted...okay maybe next year.

On the second run the water was higher and the last hole had kayakers for Lunch breakfast and dinner and even two at time...serious carnage!!

Eagle...

Well I didn't even bother kitting up for this. I watched in amazement as paddler after paddler like a line of lemmings run through this narrow grade 5 run....it looked fun, and scary.

It is a steep, rocky, narrow, ledgy run all in one, it is a steep creek lovers dream.

The carnage was minimal, but when it did happen the unfortunate kayaker got cheered and clapped from the huge crowd that had come to watch "those crazy people".

The final day had arrived and I was thankfully that a group consensus enabled us to paddle at Taylorville one last time...That is definitely one of my favorite rivers now. With my boofing perfected I nailed my lines like a dream. The highlight was running the 30ft slide a couple of times.

We then moved on to Raquette. Alden hadn't run it before, and I felt kinda sorry for him when the group decided he wouldn't be allowed to scout anything...on that note I volunteered to be the groups shuttle bunny...I have run the Raquette before, but I am not confident enough not to scout. So I sat in the sun, borrowed a Dog and stuffed myself on cookies and beer...it's a hard life.

The guys on the other hand raced down the river two times...I think they almost ran out of water on the second run.

They came armed with tales of fist fights in eddies and broken boats from badly run waterfalls (none of them were our group).

Huge smiles, beers and new friendships ooh and cookies seemed to be the perfect ending to the weekend!!

WARNING the English are taking over!!! I was surprised at the amount of English paddlers I met over the weekend...

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