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Old 07-18-2005   #1
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 168
NF crystal

Just did the North Fork of the Crystal last weekend. The flow was high but good, the scenery epic, the 4x4 rough - but a stock truck can do it.
CRC makes this run sound sketch, but it is actually just big and fun. The first 4 drops in this run represent arguably one of the cleanest stretches of runnable class V in the state. The inner gorge below the first 4 is a little more consequential, but the meanest series of drops are easily walked. If you walk these drops you are basically walking most of the white water in the inner gorge, but it is a cool place to be and you get to run a supper clean and fun 20 footer at the end.

We ran several laps on the first 4 drops because they are that good. The first drop is a long low angle slide that ends in a micro eddy above a 40 slide that goes vertical for the last 10 feet. Sometimes it launches you into the pool; sometime you go a little deep. Next is a 10 foot 2 stage notch drop followed by a clean 18 footer. All drops have pools or eddies between them for regrouping. After the 18 footer is a technical slide drop that puts you into the inner gorge. Make sure you know were your next 2 eddies are after this.

It's a lot of work for 1/2 mile of boating, but its worth it at least once. It should be good for next weekend. No real bad wood to speak of. Make sure you scout the inner gorge before going in. Eddies are few and small before the burly section. Pictures to come soon.

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Old 07-18-2005   #2
ACC's Avatar
dropzone, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 845
nice write-up! Those first four drops are definitely spectacular, although i thought of the 18-footer you mentioned as closer to an 8-footer. That is definitely one of the most scenic spots in CO. Hope some crews get up there next weekend. Can't wait to check out some pics.

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Old 07-18-2005   #3
Golden, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 490
You should be the AW streamkeeper for that run and write it up someplace permanent.

Glad to here you all had fun and came back safe.
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Old 07-18-2005   #4
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Filmmaker, Colorado
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 104
After scouting Yule, I'm still having dreams/nightmares/cold sweats. That thing is super sick.
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Old 07-18-2005   #5
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 168
Lets compromise and call it 12 feet.

Schizzle, What if say the takout is by the first outhouse on the left. I wouldn't want you to head over an unrunable 60 footer.
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Old 07-18-2005   #6
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Phuoc My, Da Nang, THE 'NAM
Paddling Since: 1845
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,988
where is there good pics and/or footage of lower yule online? ive got a lot of pics of the upper, but i dont think ive seen any of the lower
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Old 07-18-2005   #7
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 1,302
Valhalla has lots of shots of it, though none of them marked. LVM #11 showcases lower Yule, upper Yule, and NF Crystal.

I think ashland mine has some online pics of Yule. There is an article on, but no pics.
Kyle McCutchen
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Old 07-19-2005   #8
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Mountains on the river!!!, Idaho
Paddling Since: 2002
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 702
Whats the lowest flow NF can be run at? Ive heard that it can be run down to 75-100 cfs and make a good V-V(-) run. Anyone know??
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Old 07-19-2005   #9
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No Big Names 1 has a full top to bottom tour of Yule. Creatures of Habit also features these drops with local boaters hucking themselves down. Don't know where to go for pics though.

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