Sunday, February 2, 2014

Fife Brook - February 1, 2014

Taking a break in the flatwater
below Hangover Helper
We’re having a heat wave this weekend with temp’s getting up into the 40’s. While most rivers are still iced in, there are a few running. One that always runs is the Fife Brook section of the Deerfield. I was the only open boater in a group with 6 yakkers (Andy, Mike, Jeff, Denise, Sage and Kelly).

The river was at a nice level – around 1,500 cfs. Temperatures were in the mid-30’s. We had a little rain while we were paddling, and a few flurries on the drive home. It took us about 3 ½ hours to do the five-mile run. We had only one swim – it wasn’t me, but I was involved.

Andy running Zoar Gap
At the top of a rapid called Pinball, I pulled into what looked like a nice long eddy, only to find a strong downstream current. I got pushed to the bottom of the eddy and pinned (still upright) against a rock. Unfortunately, Denise followed me into the eddy thinking that she could stay high, only to get caught in the same current. She pinned against my boat pushing the stern back out into the current. Once my boat hit the fast moving water, it pivoted off the rock and literally ran her over. No wonder yakkers stay away from us open boaters!

By the time we got to Zoar Gap I was tired. I paddled down to get some pictures, but I wimped out and walked my boat around the two big drops. I probably should have run it – everyone said it was fun.

Running Freight Train


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