Friday, January 2, 2015

New Year's Day run at Tville - January 1, 2015

Heading to the put-in
“Winter is not just about skiing”.  That’s what Jo-Ann told the reporter from the Hartford Courant who came to get some pictures of our New Year’s Day trip on the Tville section of the Farmington, and she was right.  New Year’s Day runs are definitely a tradition around here.  Ian said “to have a good year if you’re a whitewater boater, you have to be in the water on the first”.  Well, I was!

This year, I had a couple of options for trips on New Year’s Day, but I decided to join a group from the Where’s the Whitewater at group on Facebook to run the Tariffville Gorge or Tville section of the Farmington.  The run itself is short - just 1.5 miles - but there are play spots for paddlers of all skill levels.   At yesterday’s level (2.1 feet, 900 cfs on the Tariffville gage) it is a class II/III run.  The difficulty increases as the level rises.

Running the Ledges
We met at Tariffville Park to run the shuttle down to the take-out on Tunxis Road below the Route 187 Bridge.  The temperature was around 30º so we didn’t spend a lot of time hanging around.  The river starts off easy with the few small ledges and nice surf waves.  The best of these are Cathy’s Wave and the Horseshoe Ledge.  At this water level, you can surf these waves for hours. 

As you enter the gorge the intensity picks up a bit.  I ran the Bridge Abutment Rapid to the right, and the rapid approaching the play hole to the left.  Below the play hole is a small ledge.  I eddied out on the left before ferrying to the middle to run the drop.  I ran the ledges further downstream by doing the opposite - eddying out on the right, and ferrying to the left to run the drop.  There is a nice surf wave (Typewriter) as the river turns left around an island, but I wimped out and didn't try to surf it.  Good time as always – Happy New Year!

The crew takes a break

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