Saturday, February 05, 2005

EF Lewis -- Falls Run

Dragon's Back with Screaming Left in the distance.

A wonderful day on the Falls Run, this time with flows slightly higher at 540 cfs. Still low, and I look forward to seeing the run at 700 cfs next time. Shaun and I met up with boaters from Bellingham and PDX, and I'd list names, but there's no way I get them all right. Suffice to say we had a great time -- and thanks to everyone who came out.

Photos are posted in the gallery.

Video: Sunset Falls

This run begins with Sunset Falls -- the purpose of our whole trip. Shaun was excited to try his first waterfall, and I was hoping to actually stay in my boat this time. First, however, I had to have a boat. My Wing is out of commission til I repair the seat attachment, and the NRS boat was down with one foot peg and both thigh straps being busted. Nothing for it but to get creative at the putin:

Brian's jury-rigged IK. SIX structural straps.

It worked though, and I made a successful run:

That's me. In my boat. At the bottom of the drop. Took a big brace, but damn was it fun.

Below Sunset Falls, the river offers class II and III riffles until Hippie John's, a short drop with a large midstream boulder. Either side goes at this level.

Video: Hippie John's

Hippie John's.

A typical drop in this section.

Next up, in quick succession, is Sky Pilot, one of my favorite drops on this run. We had a bit of carnage here, but everybody came out safe and sound.

Sky Pilot.

Shaun says "I like creekin!"

There's a funny shallow ledgey drop between Sky Pilot and Screaming Left. Stay right. Beautiful section of river.

Roughly fifteen minutes below Sky Pilot come Screaming Left. I enjoy the line in this one -- it's one of the toughest on the run. At this flow, the far left chute at the bottom goes, which makes the line a bit easier if you get pushed too far left on the right-to-left move.

Video: Screaming Left

Shaun gets it done in Screaming Left.

Immediately below Screaming Left is Dragon's Back, a steep ledge hole best run on the right.

Video: Dragon's Back

Shaun gets a lively tailstand in Dragon's Back.

There's a beautiful but short gorge here, with wonderful pools. Too bad the EF Lewis couldn't give us a version of Final Five Canyon ...

The canyon below Dragon's Back.

Below this scenic gorge, one final drop awaits: John's Swimmin' Hole. This starts off with a lateral curler before dropping over a nice ledge hole.

Video: John's Swimmin' Hole

The author in John's Swimmin' Hole.

Just below John's Swimmin' Hole is a short ledge drop above the Copper Creek confluence.

Once below Copper Creek, the East Fork loses a bit of punch. Rapids are mostly class III, with a couple of larger drops.

One of the bigger drops below Copper Creek. Somehow, somebody swims this one every trip. Keep a brace handy!

Video: Horseshoe Falls

Last but not least, Horseshoe Falls awaits, for a final fun drop.

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