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Old 05-20-2008   #1
Ed Hansen's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 331
The Gorge has awaken.

A quick evening run down the Royal Gorge tonight. 5:40pm put-on, and 7:05pm take-out at tunnel drive. 1700 cfs.

I knew it was coming up a bit; expected it to be atleast 1500.

It only took 20 minutes to start into Primero. 5 minutes later I was at Pump House. When I saw the river wide wave at the top I knew the river was very much over 1500... Only after I arrived home did I see that it had gotten up to 1700.

Some big waves on the approach to Sunshine. Surf's up!

At about 30 minutes in, I was dropping into Sunshine. I when straight in with the left-of-center line. Worked my way to the right and realized that the river has finally risen to that pushy level. Took the right line around the hole and back to center for the finish. It's been getting easier to run as the level is rising and tonight was great!

Grateful Dead has a couple of it's largest rocks still exposed up top, but the rest is just big waves and holes.

Sledge Hammer Actually got a bit more challenging at this level. So far this year I had been taking the top drop, (with the hydrolic at the bottom), with a quick lift of the bow at the bottom to glide up onto the hydrolic without getting my hairwet. Tonight that sucker was 3-4 feet high. Lifting a bow on this will stern-squirt you onto your head lightning fast if you have a playboat. (trust me). It is now an (impact) punch move with a foward paddle at the ready as you go in. The 2nd drop is good to go over the center hay stack wave. Go center. As you crest the wave, You will survey below you a diagnal on the left, a diagnal on the right and a huge tongue hammering into a flushing hole directly below you that is getting closer with a quickness. Reach your paddle over the pile as you enter and pull yourself out and negotiate the huge chop, veer to one side of the other to avoid that hole in the center. Clarks hole looks juicy and the ledge drop preceding it flipped me. I Guess I need to brush up on busting through that diagnal on the left side. Staying left on this one keep me away from the hole. Yee-haw!

Bird Drop has transformed into "Hey diddle-diddle, DONT go down the middle". (That wave train makes it look SO SO tempting!)

The Narrows have woke up. It's pretty much non-stop waves all the way to the Fishbowl.

Wall Slammer is cake. The upper hole (low water) is flushing except the 3-4 feet against the wall. The 2nd hole (low water) is gone. It's actaully not that pushy here at this level. I was able to get a surf on the 2nd of two waves at the bottom against the wall. They will only get bigger and better as the level rises. That big pile of cememt just down stream in the middle of the river are under, though you may still scrape your hull if you go over it's wave.

Boat eater is munchy. Don't go there. But the waves above it are surfable if you have a quick roll.

Corner pocket's wave has a nice pile. Don't miss it.

Big waves and wave trains all the way to Lionshead and Lionshead is a continuous series of wave trains forever. If you use a good boof stoke at the top, and the wave-rise/crash-timing is behaving perfectly, you can get air-borne off the backside of some of these.

Pipeline is actually a rapid now.

A little later and I'd been on the river 1-hour.

25 more minutes of catching the occational surf and boofing over the rock ledges and I'm taking out at Tunnel Drive.

A great evening. More of the same tomorrow evening!

See you on the river!

call me if you want to run it tomorrow at 4:30? 5:00? 5:30? (719)661-4377

"So in two seconds, away we went, a sliding down the river, and it did seem so good to be free again and all by ourselves on the big river and nobody to bother us." -Mark Twain (The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn)
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