Middle Fork Salmon and IK's - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #1
 
Lake Oswego, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1983
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 94
Middle Fork Salmon and IK's

I got invited to do the MF on July 17 mainly because I have gone down it 14 times. The TL is a rookie on this river along with a number of other people on in a group of 19 people. I have not met the TL and only know one other guy on the roster. I told the TL no way would I take an IK down the MF. It is just not an IK type river if you want to have a safe trip. He still plans to take 3 IK's. Would somebody please chime in and give me their thoughts.

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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #2
 
Bend, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2008
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I would be interested in knowing why you think it's not appropriate for IKs. Or, I guess, what's unsafe about an IK on the middle fork compared to other boats? I'm not questioning your reasoning, just don't know.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #3
 
Boise, ID
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I personally wouldn't take an IK because I don't like IKing. Have I seen plenty of people in IKs on the MFS? Yes. I've seen outfitters with kids in IKs. I'm guessing for some of the rapids or even days, the IKers ride in rafts.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #4
 
Golden, Colorado
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Commercials put supervised newbs in IKs on the MFS after it settles down from runoff.

Lighten up, Francis.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #5
 
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salmon, Idaho
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we have taken IK's a couple of times and would not hesitate to take them again, Especially in late July.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #6
 
Lake Oswego, Oregon
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Thanks for your responses. It looks like I am in the wrong. I know the river level will be pretty low, so you want to go light. And chances are we will be hauling the IK's in rafts until you are past Pistol. IK's are much more tippy than rafts and I just haven't seen many on the MF.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #7
 
Golden, Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2005
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Upper MFS at lower flows is pretty much perfect,fun ducky water. A swim out of a ducky late July should be a near zero fucks given non event.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #8
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Bellevue, Idaho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OregonianRG View Post
Thanks for your responses. It looks like I am in the wrong. I know the river level will be pretty low, so you want to go light. And chances are we will be hauling the IK's in rafts until you are past Pistol. IK's are much more tippy than rafts and I just haven't seen many on the MF.
The river level will be pretty normal for a mid July flow, not low. It will actually be close to perfect level for IK. Class 3+ for the most part, nothing too serious for consequences, the longer rapids can be less than awesome if you swim, but what isn't?

When I ran commercial, so mostly people with zero experience, we would wait until below Pistol to blow them up. I once 'led' a group of six friends in IK and me in hardshell at around 4.5 feet. I got surfed into the corner pocket room on river left in Pistol. It fed me right into the current right in front of the first IKer. Got run over, rolled up, repeat five more times. Good times. I thought I was going to swim.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #9
 
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Seattle, Washington
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 507
It ain't about the boat.

At 3 feet many folks are competent to entirely self-support the MFS in IKs. A great many more are competent to paddle sections in an empty IK for a change of pace. Anyone could swim anywhere, too. Depends on the paddler.

I've only rowed the MFS on my laps but I definitely want to IK it some day. I've IK'd the SF Salmon and the Illinois -- there's nothing on the MFS that is inappropriate for an IK unless you start talking very high water.

Paddlers should be dressed to swim and have self-rescue skills, like on any III-IV trip.

It ain't about the boat.
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