Saturday, April 09, 2005

ELF Boating: Fall in the Wall

Looking upriver from Island Drop

Our low water mis-adventures continue! This month's installment: Fall in the Wall on the upper South Fork Snoqualmie.

Steve Munk, Joe Sauve and I decided the time had finally come to hit Fall in the Wall. We'd talked about it many times, but road conditions, flows, and logistics had never worked out right. Now most of the regular crew was headed down south to Copper and Canyon Creeks, and we just couldn't bring ourselves to travel that far for the fourth time in ten days.

Photos are available in the Gallery.

When we reached the putin, there was a solid 8 inches of snow on the ground. Flow? Under 100 CFS. Probably closer to 50. Hard to say, cause I ain't never run something so low. Steve was pumped to hit Fall in the Wall itself, while Joe and I put in at Limbo Log.

Video: Fall in the Wall

Steve drops Fall in the Wall.

Video: Joe's seal launch

Joe runs left at Limbo Log. Note the pin spot on the right.

Shortly below Limbo Log came the first of many very narrow slots. Here, Joe gets up on two wheels to slide through.

Joe hits a narrow slot.

Next up, after a short entry ledge, comes the Fearsome Foursome. Why it isn't the Fearsome Fivesome I don't know, but I guess the first ledge isn't scary enough. Collectively, these five ledges are a hoot! There were no big hydraulics today, but there was enough water to scrape and slide down. We can't wait to see this one at higher water!

Video: Above Fearsome Foursome
Fearsome Foursome 1
Fearsome Foursome 2
Fearsome Foursome 3
Fearsome Foursome 4

Joe lines up on a slide, Fearsome Foursome.

Steve nails the final drop of the Fearsome Foursome.

The author in the final drop of the Fearsome Foursome.

Shortly below the Fearsome Foursome is a trashy little boulder garden that had us out of boats dragging over the shallows. We shortly arrived at Island Drop. This drop offers up to four routes. From river left to right, channel 1 had wood, 2 was clear, 3 had wood, and 4 needed more water.

Video: Island Drop

Below Island Drop come three fun drops: Fisherman's (a fun double drop), an unnamed drop in a sharp bend to the left, and the Green Room (a steep slide into a hole). All were clean and needed more water, but were plenty of fun.

Video: Fisherman's

Steve runs the bottom half of Fisherman's.

Video: Below Fisherman's

Video: Green Room

Steve lines up for the Green Room.

Joe prepares to check into the Green Room.

Shortly below the Green Room, Joe and I took out and headed downriver to setup for Steve's run at Rootball. There's some new wood overhanging the main drop, but at these flows there was no trouble.

Video: Rootball

Steve nails his line at Rootball.

We thought we were done for the day, but Steve was eyeing the next horizon line. "Looks like it goes," he said. So we setup. Unfortunately light was no good for stills, but here's some vid captures and the clip.

Video: The Big Slide [hi-res]

Steve nails the big slide below Rootball.

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