Mexico Creeking ClinicsTrip Report - December 2007
In December of 2007, we branched out our creeking clinics to include 2 week-long classes on the warm rivers and waterfalls of San Luis Potosi state in Mexico. Forming a partnership with the brand new Huasteca Secreta resorts, we headed south of the border for a couple of weeks of boofing, waterfalling, eating and sight-seeing.
We rolled off of Brushy Mountain in early December loaded all the way down with 12 kayaks and Dooley's canoe strapped onto the van in various ways. After a huge number of emails back and forth with our host - Huasteca Secreta owner Juani Torres-Landa - we had a good feeling that this was going to be an incredible trip. We didn't know the half of it.
Our drive to Mexico took a week, with stops to visit family and the wedding of some friends along the way. We arrived at the Huasteca Secreta resort at El Salto on the 9th around 7 pm - about 1 hour before the plane carrying our first crew of boaters landed in Tampico - and met up with Juani (the younger), the owner's son. Around 11:30 that night the crew rolled in from Tampico, having been picked up by Juani (the elder) and his daughter Jimena. Everyone was tired from all the travel, so we all headed to bed so that we could get a good start the next day.
On both clinics, everyone arrived in the dark, so it was quite a treat to wake up and see our surroundings in the morning. The resort is a beautiful place to stay, and after a delicious breakfast we spent the first morning outfitting our fleet of brand new Pyranhas in the grass between the bungalos and the river. On the second clinic this process was much quicker due to the hard work the first group put in getting the boats set up.
After outfitting boats, group 1 piled on to the "Ultimate Shuttle Vehicle" (USV) for the trip to the river. It was a really cool ride up there checking out the views of the towns, countryside, and mountains, but it was also slow going in the USV on the Mexican back roads. Juani made the play of the day by switching us into vans to speed up our ride and get us on the Ojo Frio in time for a run before dark. From then on the USV would preceed us to the rivers each day with the kayaks, and we would follow in the speedier van.
On the first clinic we were so late that we didn't get any pictures of our run, but we got some shots on the second clinic. Ojo Frio is a great warm-up for Mexican travertine whitewater, with probably about 100 ledges from 2-10 feet in its 3-4 mile length. It's the perfect place to get a lot of practice working on stroke timing and placement.