Precipitation has been falling across Oregon for the last month and it was time to see what all the high water levels had to offer. After cooling off from the initial 20,000 CFS that had been coursing down the McKenzie, Nick Rice and I decided to see what Clover would look like at 15,000 CFS. We were pleasantly surprised to see the second wave at Clover was pumping, had defined shoulders, and looked sticky enough to throw some aerials.
Loading up Ms. Suzy.
The top wave was a little washed out – still surfable if you have a longer boat – so we mostly kept to the second wave in the set.
Of course it’s not a real river trip until someone says, “It’s bigger when you’re on the water”. Here is a nice shot to give you some perspective.
Blunts are one of my favorite kayaking moves. The right shoulder built up nicely allowing for good speed and bit of air time if you timed it right.
Kelly throwing a lefty blunt.
The ferry can be tricky but if you catch the waves forming the shoulders of Clover the move becomes much easier. After flushing, the boils coming back into the eddy can be difficult to navigate and it’s usually a little easier to come in lower in the long eddy.
After surfing for an hour or so, it was time to take a break so we hauled the boats up onto shore and bathed in the sunshine, keeping a sharp eye out for rivermaidens.
Nick’s elbow has been a little tight recently but it didn’t keep his spirits down.
After a long day of paddling, we headed for shore. The permagrins haven’t left our faces yet.
Can one ask for a better day on the water? Smiles all around.
Thanks to James Fredericks for the river beta at this water level!