Friday, October 31, 2008

El Rio Desahue

We were stoked to leave santiago in search of some real kayaking. Ian bought our new dope ass ride, a chevy luv 4x4. We left San Alfonso at like 4pm and drove to Pucon, something like a 10 hour drive.

Our dope ride on the way to Pucon.

We slept a bit, then met up with rodrigo for a day of rediculously sick kayaking.
El rio Desahue, one of the main Pucon area creeks. This river is probably the best river I have ever paddled. There are about 100 perfect 10footers, amazing fun rapids, and two 30ish footers.

Rodrigo showing us what up chillean style. check out

Me on one of the upper rapids, what an amazing river.

We came to a rapid formerly known as the "portage" a nice 30ftr with a shallow landing.

Ian gave ´er first with a very nice line.

Rodrigo ran it second, also having a beautiful line.

And then Evan with the classic evan steeze off that bitch, layin treats fo sho.

I figured I would walk it, lots of consequence, and I was str8 off the couch.
We ran 20 more perfect ten footers.

Evan running a tricky log duck with a stout hole.

The end of the run is the best, where the ojos waterfall awaits.

Evan on the entrance.

Evan boofing demshitz. Layin Treats

Me running the right side, a nice perfect 30.

Me layin them treats on the left side. I be gettin that fo sho.

Evan as usual with the dope ass steeze yo.

Pucon area is one of the most beautiful places i have ever been. I plan to return many times in my life. Its halloween so im off to the bars, check back for more dope updates fo sho. also check egcreekin

Saturday, October 25, 2008

El Rio Coyanco 1st Descent

After a dope asada last night with plenty of steak, and sausage. Pangal told us we would be waking up early to do a first descent of a tributary to the Maipo, the Coyanco. We woke early, drank mate and headed to the take out. We planned on using mules to carry our kayaks up the river valey, but the mules got scared when we loaded them up with four boats each so we resorted to carrying our boats up. The hike was decently long, probably like 3 or 4 miles, where we reached a decent rapid. Most of the group stayed there while Ian and Pangal headed up more in search of more rapids. They found a couple ten footers, and some manky boulder piles. We took a short nap in the chilean sun while Pangal and Ian paddled the upper section. We then geared up, and ran the most signifigant rapid, a class 4 ish drop with two tiered boofs, one being like 6 feet. We then ran the rest of the river, which consisted of lots of manky class 3, with two fun class 4 ish drops. It was a good time.

We loaded up Sergio´s little ranger with ten boats haha.

Trying to get the mules stoked about the trip.

The Mules crossing the creek.

We finally resorted to hiking

Ian on the trek.

The first signifigant rapid we found.

Evan layin treats on it.

Ian fired up that he didnt just hike 3.5 miles for one rapid.

Ian boofin that shit.

Pangal takin er to town yo.

The truck full of kayaks.

The view from pangal´s house, the Maipo valley is pretty.

Cactus and stuff.

Stay tuned for more EXTREME adventures.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Chile 2008

So here I am at the rio Maipo close to santiago. It was an epic transit here with very icy roads from Carbondale to Denver. Then we arrived at the airport, where we of course ran into trouble flying with a boat. American Airlines doesnt check boats, so i was forced to refund my ticket, and buy a new ticket with Delta because they would fly my boat. The delta ticket ended up bieng way cheaper costing 1200 rather than 1500 with american so that was sick. After a 300 dollar fee to fly with my boat, and my paddle bag, and my duffel, I was off to Atlanta where i would then connect to my flight to santiago. The flight was hellishly long, i think it was like 10 and a half hours. I arrived in santiago, bought my visa, and was fortunate enough to have all my bags make it. There I met Evan and Ian Garcia. Their paddle bag didnt make it down so Evan stayed in santiago with his lady while Ian and I traveled to San Alfonso, a small rafting town on el rio maipo. The chilean kayakers here are super cool. Although the Maipo is not our destination for the dope yakin, it is a beautiful valley, with tall snowcapped peaks and desert like vegetation. We are figuring out logistics right now so that Ian can buy a truck, and head to Pucon where stout waterfalls await us. Untill next time, ciao

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Snowmass Creek 1st Descent

Located in the Maroon-Bells Wilderness at the foot of Mount Daily and Capitol Peak, Snowmass Creek is a high alpine creek located in pristine wilderness. This creek provides bar-none the most extreme, rigorous kayaking yet discovered in the Roaring Fork drainage and certainly some of the most intense kayaking in Colorado (probably minus the Black Canyon, Pandora’s Box). Roughly an eight-mile long run this creek provides a one mile section of straight whitewater dropping roughly 750 ft per mile, with the crux section dropping 900 ft per mile. The rest is continuous class 3 to 5 boogie water depending on the level and section.
Fred Norquist, Alex King and Jake Sakson discovered the gorge at the end of June 2008 and they weren’t even looking for it. On a scouting/flossing mission to the upper stretches of the creek they thought the run out was just boogie water. A deafening roar and an inevitable look proved otherwise. Two hundred yards of slides and holes led into a massive sixty foot waterfall, that lead into essentially 2 plus miles of continuous, steep whitewater. Why look any further after discovering one of Colorado’s tallest waterfalls and some of the most intense rapids in the Colorado River drainage? After scouting the bulk of the whitewater the team decided that it was arguably all run-able but was a little bit too intense due to the continuity and stomping holes of the high flow. They decided to hike in when water levels dropped.
A month later the run hardly looked the same, after a very grueling six mile hike in with boats, paddling and camping gear the scouting and flossing mission ensued. Disappointingly, the now seventy footer landed on rocks and a few other rapids were a little too hard/sketchy for them to run at the low flows but at least the holes could not devour school buses. The run was still continuous, steep and technical and certainly demanded difficult moves and not-negotiable eddie catches. Alex King dropped out of the descent crew. The descent of the gorge was without disasters, but not without close calls.
Photos by Tess Freeman, Colin Osborn, and ALex King.

Fred and Jake after a fit-full sleep with a long day of kayaking and logistics ahead of them.

The super beautiful campsite we had, that place is pristine!!

Jake running a narrow slot boof just above the top slides.

EXTREME!! haha

The upper part of the top slides.

Jake on the top slides from above.

Jake again laying it down on the top slides.

Fred running the top slides

Fred at the end of the top slides. That was a fun rapid.

Fred in the small, must-make eddy just above the no-run 70footer.
The first rapid, a long multi-tiered slide with a narrow slot entrance, and a small must-make eddy proved easy enough for the paddlers. They were both happy not to miss the eddy, and go over the 70 ft waterfall to rock.

Jake scouting the 70 footer that lands on rocks :-( We wanted to give 'er pretty bad.

The BIG ONE from above.

The Portage was kinda rough, some sketchy moves to get back down in the gorge.

The first semi-sketchy rapid in the gorge.

Fred and Jake contemplating a successful line down the rapid.

A nice view up the gorge.

Fred had a nice line fading off the left of the ridge.

Jake being super studly.

Jake killed it of course, stomping the line riding the ride all the way down on the far right.

Another cool pic of Jake killing it.

Jake running a manky run-out

Just after the first rapid of the gorge is a very sketchy rapid that we dubbed Elbow. We were hesitant to run it due to large pin potential.

Elbow, sketchy fo sho.

Another view.

We then portaged elbow, seal launched just afterwards.

Fred performing a typical branch duck. Just after the portage.

A little tight boof section just after the branch duck. This then leads into a narrow slot, shortly afterwards leading to an un-runable 30ftr.

Jake at the branch duck.

Jake dropping into the tight slot.

Fred in the narrow slot.

This is where the close calls start. Fred, after running the tight slot missed a very tricky move into a tiny eddie that left him hanging onto a rock just at the lip of the no-run 30ftr. This lead to Brian Butcher on safety having to grab the bow loop, and pull him into the eddie away from danger.

Jake with a sexy line down the tight slot.

Jake and Fred with a tricky portage of the sketchy 30ftr.

The put-in after the 30ftr, entering the lower gorge.

Jake killing it after the un-runnable 30.

Just after the un-runnable 30.

Jake cleanin up some mank on the lower section.

A sweet slide at the end of the gorge section.

Colorado's new class 5 run, get in there. Check back for more updates from Chile!!