Post by Brent Samples on Mar 24, 2019 7:17:05 GMT -5
Date: Saturday—March 22, 2019 River: New River Dries Level: ~2300 CFS Coordinator: Brent S. Participants: Don B, Matt T., Shane G., Dave B., Nick P., Christian M., Adam R., Kevin F., Michael C., Lacye C., Harry N., Mike B., Dave W., Molly W.,Bryant B., Meghan F., Sam, Nelson M., and Brent S. Comments: Brookfield provides their first scheduled release today (thanks to AW and the local constituents who negotiated these releases).
A few of us had been losely planning this trip through the Montgomery Pool sessions for some time. Most of our talk was speculation on when will the New drop low enough that a release can happen.
We met up at CVS around 11:00 AM. A starting group size of 18 takes a little time to get organized between loading and picking up folks at put in and what not
We sent the rafts ahead to air up at the standard put in. The rest of decided to walk up to the dam and put in since it was the first official release.
Some put in above the first drop, others below. The shoals to the bridge were a good warm up. We mde it to the bridge in short order and ran the Cotton Hill slide rapid with no problems. We continued into Surf City/ Big Kahuna and into the next two drops. The first of these is a easy s turn and the second is also a s turn however tighter and requiring a move close to a rock. The second of these had one of our party pinned momentarily. The worrisome part was a gentlemen from another party had pinned and exited his boat with a shoulder dislocation before the boat completely disappeared under the rock. The boat was recovered later in the day. Christian noted she went far left in this drop and pretty much avoided everything in the drop.
We continued into Preludes and Mile Long enjoying the small rapids broken up by pools. We stopped for a moment above Landslide to discuss options. Half of us took the third slot, half of us took the second slot.
We then headed through to the Power House and Train Wreck rapids and paddled down to the campground to take out.
It was a very good day on the river. The water temperature is coming up, the weather was great. This trip was the first time out for a few this year and also a PFD for Lacye, Michael, Adam, Kevin, Christian, and Dave.
Release level it was a happy medium with enough water to get a small raft down yet plenty of slots, eddy lines, and waves to play. The consistency will allow paddlers to learn the drops and lines. This level is a step up from the Middle Gauley/ Cherry/ Lower Yough and one gets a dose of funny water thrown in as well. The release will be perfect for aspiring NRG / LG boaters
Post by Tony Daniel on Mar 24, 2019 8:42:33 GMT -5
"the second is also a s turn however tighter and requiring a move close to a rock. The second of these had one of our party pinned momentarily. The worrisome part was a gentlemen from another party had pinned and exited his boat with a shoulder dislocation before the boat completely disappeared under the rock. The boat was recovered later in the day. Christian noted she went far left in this drop and pretty much avoided everything in the drop"
All that sounds an awful lot like the drop I carry at really low flows. Given the fact that you had ample water for a small raft you should have had plenty of room in a more central or even on the far left all be it in a very scrapy channel run. At really low flows there is a small ledge you can portage over in the center of the river to avoid the sieve (river right). The seive does have a runnable route, hanging a hard left in front of it but make no mistake the rock itself is ugly and the backside at really low flow looks bad as well.
I agree with what you described as "This level is a step up from the Middle Gauley/ Cherry/ Lower Yough and one gets a dose of funny water thrown in as well. The release will be perfect for aspiring NRG / LG boaters" I do think the remoteness and carnage factor (class 3 rapids with class 4 consequences at landslide as well) is something to consider. I'm not a bit surprised by a pin and dislocation on an initial release and consider at very low flow "the sieve" and "landslide" as the key moves, and depending on conditions (water levels) have often portaged them. Amazingly, landslide is pretty straight forward at super low flows (below 5 feet on the actual dries gauge) because all the water funnels into door number three. I admit though I have always carried it at real low flow because the lead in is rocky and the cracks look scary, although the move looks pretty simple. It is cool that we are now getting a cfs correlation that is more accurate. Your run peaked yesterday at 6.5 feet, I've gone down as low as 4 feet (with two carrys required) and would like to try 5 feet on the dries gauge for my next attempt for a successful minimum run that can be done safely without portages.