Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Eight Days in the Middle Kings

Leisure Tour '09

Gambling on the dates that the water would be good we bought plane tickets to Fresno (shizblarnigan #1) to set out for the Middle Fork of the Kings. We almost got the flow right this time. After paddling the river at high water in 2005 (the flow peaked at 2200 cfs on the Roger's Crossing gauge) we were looking for a low water descent. Hoping to put on at 1250 and have the river drop, we ended up with flows holding steady around 1350cfs, I think this would be considered medium flows. Our plan was to take our time and enjoy being in the canyon as long as possible. Three groups passed us while we were on the river. The first came through with those wild eyes on a mission to get out quickly and be somewhere else, the next we juggled back and forth with as they spent time patching boats but a well planned day off allowed us to get behind them by a day. The final group came upon us while in Tehipiti Valley and only taking an extra long lunch on the Garlic Falls section allowed us to fall behind this group. You may be thinking "Wait, I thought to be a bad ass kayaker you have to bomb the run and be the first ones off the water, training for the green race everytime you paddle." Sure that's fun, but what are you missing?

Getting ready, practicing "HighFive!"

Bryce in front of the Inconsolable Range

LeConte Canyon

Product shot: I show off my Pyrahna Burn and Werner, Tim grabs his nuts, Broiler shots the bird. These are the photos that can get you free gear.

Some early mank

"Meet my right and my left"

As we appeared to the other groups kayaking the river, sitting on the bank in Arab fashion, although Tim is sporting more of the mammy look here


While the other group repaired their boats, we did this:

Where I got hammered in '05, which is just below where The Broiler was hammered this year, and right above where Helms and DeLa were hammered several years ago.

Some Class III in the Bottom 9
More Leisure Time

Previous high water trip in '05

Notice how much more sunny and happy this trip was...

Team Jib's exclusive California Highway Patrol escort into the fire zone... no shit, I'm serious.

Just like the Little Dutch boy at the dyke Bryce plugs the hole in the tire with his finger... The Broiler, with his hands on his head, wonders if the shizblarnigans will ever cease.

for a great summer read