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Old 02-20-2007   #11
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 1,302
Hey Roy, I'm glad you've healed up. Injuries are never great, and I think we've all had our fair share. We're hoping to make a trip to your home state in early March. Let's meet up and paddle some. I'll change out the name of the rapid for you. We've been calling it Lippman's Destruction.

As for the post in general, I think I can clarify some events, and comments.

I've known Roy for many years of travels and paddling in Colorado, since Roy would always come up in the summer when AZ was dry. He was always telling me about amazing runs down in AZ - multi-day creeking missions in the off-season, and I wanted it. Years later myself (or a friend or someone) was checking out AW's Little Colorado into the Grand Canyon. The V+ rating was just what we were looking for and weeks of planning went into a trip the 3rd week of March.

A week prior to the trip Steve Ward and Jared Johnson ran the river and hiked out. JJ called me and told me it was not worth it. He said it was twice as brutal as Upper Cherry Creek, and the whitewater cruxed at class IV.

Our original group fell apart, and TG, Evan Stafford, and myself decided to go somewhere a mere 3 days before departure. Plans for an early Cali trip were scrapped after I had already packed my truck to leave, and with nothing to lose, we left Wednesday night from Denver and ended up in Flagstaff the next morning, following beta from Tyler that something might be running. We called Tyler the next day and he graciously gave us a napkin full of info.

We drove to the Upper Upper Salt, spent two days there, and then spent a night in Payson. We awoke to rain clouds over the Mogollon Rim, and drove there, with beta from Tyler that their may be a 300 fpm section on Christopher (one of about ten things on a napkin). A book which we bought had a picture of a dryfall, and we decided to check it out, since we had nothing else to do that day.

It went, and the rest of the story is on

As for timing, I think we ran Christopher on March 20th, or somewhere around there, so it was a good month later. It only ran because of the rain on top of melting snow.

Tyler, Roy and others knew the potential of the run when they put on for their first attempt. They ran the first four drops (maybe five). The drop that Roy pitoned looked very shallow to us when we scouted, but we probably had 20 cfs less flow, which is substantial on that run.

The majority of the whitewater on Christopher was below where their descent ended, including a steep tripple drop, some narrow steep slides, a 8' to 3' double drop, and then the crux 15' falls, 35' falls, 20' falls. A few more drops were below that, some portages, and the end.

I don't know what qualifies as a true first descent. As for the first group that first ran the creek in its entirety, and were the first to run most of the drops, I think we did, but under ironic and lucky circumstances. We definetly didn't commit the leg work that is normaly required in finding and scoping a first descent, we just put on and did it. Fortunately our scout made it obvious that the drops were shallow, because of a visible shelf in the cliff wall that slanted into the water and towards the base of the falls.

Don't know if this helps. The thrill of a first descent for me isn't actually about who was first. It's more about the excitement of finding something new, not knowing any beta about any prior first descents or attempts. Paddling into a gorge, with zero knowledge of what lies in the walls is an amazing feeling. I guess the lack of knowledge that forces your group to figure it out on your own is really what makes it feel like a first descent, and both groups had that. Our trip just ended with much more success.

More importantly, people should be fighting over the second descent, which I'm guessing will happen this year.

Kyle McCutchen
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Old 02-20-2007   #12
placerville, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1993
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 732
better said than TG. did you guys run the drop where Roy got hurt?

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Old 02-20-2007   #13
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 91

whats funny is that my friend and I ran upper tonto a week later after those dudes ran christopher creek. where chris enters tonto we hiked up to the waterfall section at the end of the gorge on chris and did the run out. water was lower but still good. ill post a pick of a gorge on upper tonto later. what sucks is that mike had left his camera at the end of chris; it REALLLLY sucks cause we had ran red draw that year too and im sure that was a first d (pics were in the camera) fuck!. red draw is a small trib that runs into wet beaver. apparently lots of stuff got ran the year of 05.
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Old 02-20-2007   #14
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 7

This is very, um, entertaining I guess for lack of better words seeing where this thread went. I didn't mean to sound like an asshole, nor was I even trying to "claim" anything. I guess I was just trying to answer the question, and ended up sounding like an asshole due to my rushed pace (on the internet on company time, you know what I mean?). Thank you Cutch for clearing the water a bit. Sorry Todd for sounding like an asshole.

I'm new to this forum thing, and now I have been baptised I guess. Sorry to anyone who has already judged me in some way. AZ has lots of good paddling. I and friends have couches to surf. We are all in this together. Let's get off these fuckin computers and go boatin!

Any one of you can call me anytime if you need anything!

Peace- Roy
Gravity always wins!
Roy Lippman
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Old 02-20-2007   #15
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 273
Good answer... good answer.

It's hard playing nice when there's no water around. But soon, there will come a time when the fish will no longer be safe, as I will be boofin' on da motha fu@#$ heads!

We will be down in your back yard soon, so hopefully we will get to boat.

Welcome to the buzz.
hey diddle diddle...
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Old 02-20-2007   #16
Charc in = charc out
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Seattle, Washington
Paddling Since: 1992
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 475
dude, don't worry about it. you didn't sound like an a-hole. just wanted to make sure you knew that we didn't run down there on some hot tip to scoop your 1D. it was a total lucky fluke. & the discussion on "what counts as a first descent" is actually pretty valuable.

might be seeing you here pretty soon

edit: whoa "lotsashittalk", we're on the same mtbuzz check/post schedule.
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Old 02-20-2007   #17
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 7
Now that the mushroom cloud has settled a little, I just wanted to remind you all of how this thread started. The Flagstaff Mountain Film Fest is a cool event and is worth attending. There might just be some creeks running that week as well

My film is a personal story of what happened (on what was then to be a 1D), my personal journey back to kayaking, and then a run we were able to pull off in the Philippines just a year out from the injury. It's not your run of the mill "sick" paddling film, it's more of a personal journey for me (the making of this film) and tells a story. I'm a total amatuer filmmaker, but am proud of it none-the-less.

I've always been stoked on the run that Cutch, Evan and Todd punched in. I guess we're all just a little shell-shocked down here in AZ with the sudden attention.

See you all downstream!
Gravity always wins!
Roy Lippman
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Old 03-13-2007   #18
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Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,032
Do you plan on making this film available through other means? I'd be interested in hearing your story. Sorry to hear about the fused ankle - that sounds pretty tough. Glad you're still paddling though.

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