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Paddling thru Middle Earth

Friday Apr 21, 2017
Kayak: Ryan M, Dave P
Organizer: Ryan
Difficulty: advanced WW
Level: low boatable
Gauge (cfs): 800
Author: Ryan McCall

Doesn't it always start with the question of where to go????  I know I feel like I never get it right when its early season and I have no idea how do dial back my expectations and wide-eyed excitement.  By 3pm though in April, you had better have a plan or you are going to run out of day light.  So after scouting every damn tributary between Patterson (The White) and Shepherd Brook in the Mad Valley, Dave and I decided to go somewhere that the geology made sense instead of following the USGS gauges.  If it was gorged in then what little rain we got would make sense.  Off we went to Flint.  For an early season run it wouldn't hurt that it may be on the low side anyways.


We got over the Whoopty-Doos on Roxbury Gap from the frost heaves and found Flint to be fully boatable from up high on down to the hard right hand turn w/o any portages. Winning!


Putting on up high have a few short rapids and eddy hopping to get us geared up for a pretty complex boulder/bedrock rapid.  The water was medium low, so the pushiness was on the low side and you were able to link moves together.

This gorge is on par with being down in the Midd in places although not as committing, with higher water it definitely will stack up quickly and push you around corners.  The run is almost exclusively bedrock slides and ledges in the same vein as Patterson only steeper and more continuous. 


The biggest hazard on the river is the potential for wood off of the high walls and then at the end of the last straight away is a large multi drop waterfall that thus far has not been run and looks relatively terminal.  You would really want to know where to take out above that so not to get flushed into it.


We wrapped up the run in the dark shy of the final straight away but plan to get back in there again in 2017 with some saws and boats to really get after it.  Totally worth the effort if you are in Roxbury....

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