Canyon Creek

Off to the Canyon Creek they go…

Myself, Austin, and Christie headed to Canyon Creek back towards Portland and then an hour northeast. With just one vehicle we were standing around playing river poker on the shuttle options. Everyone was feeling lazy and inventing reasons why they should be the one to run shuttle and not paddle.

The conversation was verging on ridiculous when Eli and Tony showed up, on a similar one-vehicle mission. Problem sorted, and as always once the laziness was thrown aside, it was another fantastic day on the water. God, I love this sport.

Austin charges off, setting the early pace…

Eli and Tony above the same drop. Eli, although he didn’t know it at the time, was inspecting his line into a scary swim…

Tony follows the centre line, pushing through the hole. Eli’s line dropped him into the river-left hole and both he plus boat disappeared for a while.

He washed out quickly enough, but the boat reappeared just behind where you see Christie doing rescue – washed under the rock on which she’s standing. Not nice.

With everyone still intact we headed on. This is one of Christie’s fav rivers in the area. Lots of boof ledges and clean drops. Austin boofs…

Tony went for the line on the far side, driving hard to cut the corner…

He cut the corner a little too tight and squirted out along the far wall. All good clean fun.

I’m not quite sure what’s going on here, but it’s Eli running something backwards. Deliberately I’m sure.

This is me on the lead-in to the same drop. Most of the river valleys in this part of the world are like this – steep-sided and forested, with this amazing water – if you were going to sell bottled river water, I’d suggest the Pacific Northwest for your bottling plant.

The water’s mighty cold though, hence the shiny drysuit. I take back all the slagging I ever gave anyone about wussy drysuits. Wussy drysuits rock!

The final drop is a clean (I’m really overusing that word, but it’s appropriate in all cases here) horseshoe fall into a lake. Eli takes the plunge…

By this stage I’d been messing around with the new boat and with the seat moved all the way forward, I was feeling snug in there. Just need to sit a little more forward…

The paddle out is down the lake to the dam and then back up a different river for a half-mile, climbing out at this bridge…

Then it was off to Portland to eat some fairly amazing Thai food and borrow a T-Canyon for Christie for the upcoming Wind River Race. It turned out that the guy loaning out the boat was Rob Kerr, grizzly old-timer who wrote the Oregon river guide book. An interesting guy, still fired up about boating.

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