Lodore for newbie - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 06-16-2015   #1
 
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Paddling Since: 2011
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Lodore for newbie

I've asked this question "tangentially" in some other threads, but might as well be explicit. I'm a relative newbie, invited on a Gates of Lodore trip in mid-August. Experience consists of rowing lots of flat water and some very minor rapids on the Grand, rowing roughly half the wild&scenic Rogue (but not Blossom) on a "clinic", and rowing the entire Main Salmon (all the way through to Riggins) myself, but at quite low September water (4K or so).

So I'm wondering how much of a step up in difficulty is Lodore at whatever water levels are to be expected mid-August (do they forecast 'em like on the Grand ?).

I'm pretty sure I'll do it, but just wondering what to expect. Thanks.

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Old 06-16-2015   #2
 
Boston Mountains, Arkansas
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You'll no doubt get more detailed replies, but do it. By the time you get to the only "big" rapid you will have it figured out.
Long drive but an awesome place to be for a few days.
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Old 06-16-2015   #3
 
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
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Originally Posted by PBR62 View Post
You'll no doubt get more detailed replies, but do it. By the time you get to the only "big" rapid you will have it figured out.
That'd be Disaster or Hell's Half Mile ?
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Long drive but an awesome place to be for a few days.
Oh yeah, I wouldn't come so far for such a short trip, but it dovetails nicely with a wedding I'm attending in Idaho.
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Old 06-16-2015   #4
 
Boston Mountains, Arkansas
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Hell's half mile. Since you've been on the Grand, it probably won't look big.
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Old 06-16-2015   #5
 
Lakewood, Colorado
Join Date: Mar 2010
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Been kayaking for a few years and just bought a raft this winter for multi-days. I had two days of rowing practice this spring, and then just did my first lodore trip last week. There were a few nervous moments for a newbie oarsman, but everything went fine.

For the most part, it is all flat water and a few class III rapids. Scout hells half mile, triplet and maybe even disaster falls. Just a move or two in each and you are through. If you completely blow it, then it should not be too hard to pick up the pieces in a pool downstream. Possibly after the scout if you are not feeling good, then have a more experienced oarsman walk back up and either row or ride in your boat to give instructions.

It is a great trip, and you should go if you have the opportunity... You also have like 2 more months to get some time behind the sticks.
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Old 06-16-2015   #6
 
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
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You also have like 2 more months to get some time behind the sticks.
Here in NC, not gonna happen

I can start doing lots of pushups though !
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Old 06-16-2015   #7
 
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Wheat Ridge, Colorado
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Do those pushups, you'll need it for the last day rowing across Island Park.

Sounds like you've got plenty of miles under your belt already and should have some muscle memory on the oars. Do it. Just make sure you're not running sweep.

Have a great trip!

-AH
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Old 06-16-2015   #8
 
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Boulder, Colorado
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I had a lot less experience than that when I did Lodore for the first time. My only challenge was parking on top of Lucifer in HHM.

Do scout at least HHM.

Stay loose and ask one (or all) of your boating friends to give you a line. Enjoy - it's a beautiful place !
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Old 06-16-2015   #9
 
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
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Stay loose and ask one (or all) of your boating friends to give you a line.
Oh sure, we'll have at least 3 boats, and I won't run lead or sweep !
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Old 06-16-2015   #10
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SLC, Utah
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Definitely go! Though it will be low water (~1,000 cfs for the rapids section), but it's worth it. Watch the videos on Youtube of the runs, there are many Lodore videos at different levels, it will give you a better idea on the rapids and your own level.

At low water you will be rock dodging more than running rapids. Upper/Lower Disaster will be very bony, Triplet will be technical navigation between rocks. Hell's Half Mile most likely the left run will be open and that's about it.

But Lodore is awesome not for the rapids, but for the scenery and hikes.
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