Pearce Ferry Rapid, Lake Mead
As the water level on Lake Mead drops, the surprise rapid in the Pearce Ferry area has become a formidable obstacle. In fact, it is developing into an outright waterfall.
In 2007 I made the Grand Canyon float, and we opted to take out at South Cove, meaning that we had to motor across Lake Mead. We had our five rafts all strapped together, and we were enjoying a lazy afternoon of quiet cruising to the beat of our little Nissan 4-stroke outboard. And then we were surprised to find ourselves looking at a rapid that nobody had mentioned. We hurriedly pulled the motor and mounted-up oars on the outboard rafts, and with some coordinated rowing we were able to pull our gang of rafts around the bend.
I've just looked at videos on YouTube showing that same rapid (shot between November 2009 and February 2010), and it is fearsome! It may even become impassable if the Lake Mead water level continues to drop, as is forecast.
So if you're planning a Grand Canyon trip, with a South Cove takeout, you'd better take a look at the videos! I've heard that there are plans to extend the road out to the new river channel from the old Pearce Ferry landing, so that boaters can take-out above the falls; but I don't know how soon that might happen.
Oh. And if you're planning a Grand Canyon trip, invite me. Thanks.