Saturday, November 05, 2011

Yuba Gap

Just when you, or some other people, think the California Class V whitewater boat riding season is over, a little stretch of river receives just the right amount of water thanks to some dam maintenance. The stretch we're talking about here is known in kayaking circles as the legendary Yuba Gap run. Few attempts, fabled with epic accounts of carnage, charging, burl, swirl, and the gang, gives way to a sense of adventure when putting on this gem. Luckily for me, I live in close proximity to the mighty South Yuba river, which locals regard as the Center of the Universe. Unfortunately, the Lang Crossing gauge that measures the flow in the Yuba Gap was on the fritz, further leading to the speculation that it was indeed running. On a hunch, from seeing the HWY 49 gauge reading around 420 CFS, I drove to the put-in for a reality check of the good kind. Indeed, the river was running what looked like an optimal 350CFS. Game on! We rendezvoused at the put-in for some rockstar shuttle action. Meeting Taylor Robertson enabled us with a shuttle driver, his lovely wife Jen. Time to Charge! This run is full throttle right out of the gates. Over the course of the next four days, I encountered many burl-swirls that tested my might. I persevered of course. The slide that measures time, aka hourglass, took a toll on me my final run, but it won't hinder my high view of this run. Running it four days in row enabled me to dial the countless rapids in there, giving me a new found love and confidence in this demanding stretch. I captured some stellar eye candy whilst traveling through this beautiful canyon. I made a short movie with some of my buddies. Chargers include Justin Patt, Taylor Robertson, Thomas Moore, Jim Addington, Sean Manchester, Middy, Chris Tulley, David Maurier, Jared Noceti, Rok Sribar, and the elusive Taylor Cavin. Cheers!

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