Middle Fork low water IK question - Page 2 - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 04-07-2020   #11
 
carmen, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1988
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 33
One very important thing to note since none of you have had any MF experience - be sure and scout blind run rapids. These include Sulphur Slide (river left), Velvet (left), Lake Creek and Pistol Creek (right) Tappan Falls (right), Weber (left), Rubber (left). Devil's Tooth (left). There may be others you want to scout but these are the ones that come to mind. I was on A low water MF trip in 2018 with 5 people who had little to no experience paddling whitewater and they did fine in IK's. In fact they had a blast! I echo the fact that the water will be very cold so a drysuit and layering would be desirable. Best wishes for a great trip!

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Old 04-07-2020   #12
 
SLC, Utah
Paddling Since: 1983
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 158
I've done a half dozen or so August and September MFS trips, all self support in a mix of duckies, kayaks, and packrafts. We've had a few paddlers new to boating, although none with zero experience. My opinion is that someone with a little experience, an aggressive gung-ho attitude, and the ability to shake off a non-life threatening beating will be fine. One problem is that the trip at low water pretty much starts off with the most challenging boating and mostly gets easier. It isn't particularly dangerous but it is intimidating. I'd encourage her to go if she has a little experience and is ok knowing it will scare her a bit. Agreed that a layer of fleece and a dry suit are key. I think a wetsuit is a really, really bad idea. A ducky is about the coldest craft you can find, between staying wet and being exposed to wind. The weather is likely to be quite warm, but she needs to be prepared for cold and staying dry inside is the best way to do that.
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Old 04-09-2020   #13
Shapp
 
the grove, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1986
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 1,804
Low water MFS veteran here: Just be aware that there is significant hazard to get banged up and bruised if you were to be a swimmer in some of those long steep boulder gardens between Boundary and Indian.
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Old 04-09-2020   #14
 
Hailey, Idaho
Join Date: Nov 2016
Posts: 39
I bet she would have a blast, but there are just a few concerns as mentioned above for low water MF ducky time: 1) even at the end of summer, cold water means she'd want to dress for it, 2) the vast majority of rapids will feel splashy and fun, but there are a couple -- luckily, easily walked -- that will look intimidating to her so as long as they are paying attention to the maps and have intention to scout, she'll be able to make that decision... I'm thinking Tappan Falls and some others in the series will look intimidating, although the swims are pretty clean and probably fun, 3) I haven't done much ducky time but my impression is that you can be swimming a lot in certain rapids. No big deal but helmet and knee protection and a willingness to be careful of rocks will help.
The low water MF affair is, despite the technical spots, a pretty slow water affair. Lots of time to catch your breath and avoid hazards. And a ducky will be able to take the coolest little lines!
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