Friday, January 27, 2012

Winter Update... It's been good

This winter has been the warmest and wettest since I moved to the Southeast, a distinction that has led to some excellent kayaking. To top that off, my shoulder has finally come around to where I've been able to visit some old friends I haven't seen in years like Linville, Raven, and the Bear. I haven't been at my most diligent when it comes to getting good photos during this stretch, but I've snapped a few decent ones. If you've made it this far, I'll spare you any further drivel.

The classic cave falls of the Linville Gorge.

The Tony styling one of the nasty spots at low water (The hole in front of him feeds under the rock to his right). This might be my favorite spot on the river.

On an aside, how are other creeks of similar difficulty so much more popular than the Linville? About a month ago I did a Raven-Linville weekend with low medium flows on both. There were 40 people at Raven and 2 of us at Linville. Not that I'm complaining, I'll take all the solitude I can get in the most spectacular paddling location the east coast has to offer.

Low water Daddy's is great way to spend a sunny day.

It even has some river level cliffs.

We spent New Year's Eve on the side of this gorgeous creek in the Balsam's.

And did some more obscure hiking in the Smokies. Unrun Glory Boof?

I had run the last 3 miles of Bee but had no idea how beautiful the upper Gorge is.

Knoxville crew in a geologically unique plateau canyon. Non-horizontal bedding?

Bee gets down to business at Squeeze Play.

And continues with great rapids for a good while. Kirk about to bash a good hole.

Joe Keck getting a feel for what the Raven Fork is all about.

My little Bro blasting through the top of Razorback. He was in town for 5 days and we managed to do Daddy's, Tellico, West Prong, Raven, Bear, and Crooked Fork. His Go Bro Video is linked below.

Yeah, it's that good.

Tom's Go Bro Video from the trip. We had great levels: WP at 1.8, Raven at 10, and Bear at 20.

South East Quicky from Tom Janney on Vimeo.

Let's hope the good times just keep rolling...