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California Trip Report '07

Summer '07 is game-time for researching the River Gypsies' Guide - our first stop is California to check out some Sierra classics. Here's the report:

That afternoon we ran into another group who was just taking off the East Fork of the Kaweah, but we couldn't talk any of them into going back for another round the next day. We headed back the to the campground, thinking that we might not get the East Fork after all.

That night at the campground, we were pleased to see another car pull in with boats. The East Fork being a pretty serious run, I didn't want to just walk up to a couple of strangers in the dark and ask them if they were doing the East Fork and if I could come along. After a while one of them came over and asked what we were doing. It seems they had only two people and one car and were looking for someone to do the East Fork with. Things were starting to look up. A few minutes later the other guy walked over, and after talking in the dark for a couple of minutes I got the sneaking suspicion that it was Josh Bruckner - a former fellow southeastern creek boater whom Andria and I have known for years - we wouldn't even have to drop into the East Fork with strangers after all! His buddy Shawn turned out to be a really nice guy and solid paddler as well.

Andria and I are not in top paddling shape yet, so we decided to use a bit of a lower putin to avoid two of the more strenuous portages.

Josh and Shawn in the Upper Gorge.

East Fork resident right where we put in. Watch your step!

Shawn on the first good one - Double Drop.

Andria on a big clean steep slide.

Josh in the lower slides section.

Josh on the last good rapid - a big boof.

The East Fork is a grueling day with about 15 big clean bedrock drops. In between there are miles of boatable class V mank, and several tricky or strenuous portages. If you're looking for a day of adventure creeking in SoCal, this is a good way to get a bit of California experience.

Finshed with our hit list in the Kaweah drainage, we made the radical move of driving straight north to the Yuba drainage to try to catch a few things up there before the water ran out.

Stay tuned for update 2 - the Yuba Drainage