Lower Salmon Trip Report - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 09-09-2015   #1
 
Whetstone's Avatar
 
Boise, Idaho
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Lower Salmon Trip Report

When forced to cancel our Main Salmon Permit due to the Tepee Springs fire, our crew opted to run the Lower Salmon instead. We all Figured it would be busy on the lower due to everyone having to cancel their trips on the Main. We were wrong. We launched on Wed. the 2nd and never saw a single other soul on the river until Saturday evening, the 5th, when the first of the Holiday weekend boaters caught up to us in our layover camp. It was awesome. Our party of 8 had the whole river to our selves it seemed. By Sunday afternoon all the weekend boaters had rushed past us and we still had til Tuesday the 8th before we took off at Heller Bar. It rained like the Devil for a day and a half but that made no dent in our crews attitudes. The flows were low, the water brilliant clear and the beaches huge. Few bugs and very mild temps made the trip delightful. That a few extraordinary Culinary Wizards and several bottles of fine sippin whiskey made for an exceptional Idaho River Float.

Most of us are veterans of the Middle Fork and the Main but had just never got around to floating the Lower. We thought it would be a less beautiful section. We were so wrong. I feel silly for not having run this section sooner. We were all blown away by the beauty of the canyons. A splendid late season trip that we all hope to repeat again soon.
[IMG]https://whetstone.smugmug.com/Other/...ng/i-cb3hnzC/A[/IMG]

[IMG]https://whetstone.smugmug.com/Other/...ng/i-5n5HPgF/A[/IMG]

Also Three cheers for Michelle at All Rivers Shuttles. She started calling me with fire updates many days before our trip and was super flexible at accommodating us when our plans changed. Thanks Michelle.

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Old 09-09-2015   #2
 
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Post Falls, Idaho
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Thanks for the report! Was there anything difficult due to the lower flow? Did it require more rowing between rapids?

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Old 09-09-2015   #3
 
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Boise, Idaho
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Low flows were no problem. Plenty of water. Things were boney making for interesting lines at Snow Hole and China Rapids. Very Fun. Some of the class IIs seemed like threes and some were MIA. Most of our slack water miles were easy. The winds were forgiving with only modest up canyon winds in the afternoons. Camps were clean and fire wood was plentiful. Despite the recent fire activity there were no fire restrictions for boaters on the lower either. That really surprised me.
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Old 09-12-2015   #4
 
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Loveland, Colorado
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Was Alan Shaw on your trip?


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Old 09-12-2015   #5
 
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Boise, Idaho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John_in_Loveland View Post
Was Alan Shaw on your trip?


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That depends! Are you in anyway affiliated with law enforcement or the IRS?

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Old 09-12-2015   #6
 
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Loveland, Colorado
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We did the main together in late July. I am way jealous of his new purple ride.

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Old 09-13-2015   #7
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Boise, Idaho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John_in_Loveland View Post
Was Alan Shaw on your trip?


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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whetstone View Post
That depends! Are you in anyway affiliated with law enforcement or the IRS?

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Hehe, yeah, I was there. And no, John isn't law enforcement, though he might impose fines for bourbon spillage or dull knives.

And, yes, I concur with everything in the OP. The Lower Salmon is definitely on my list for many repeat runs. Not as "wild" as the Main or MFS, but definitely scenic. As we discussed on the river, it would be a great place to float slowly, and stop frequently to take photos. One could fill a "coffee table book" with pictures of the scenery in there.

It was a great group, and a great trip. Come up and run it sometime, John. You will love it.
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Old 09-13-2015   #8
 
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Boise, Idaho
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Ok. Sorry John Can't be too careful. Thought we might have been infiltrated.

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Old 09-13-2015   #9
 
white salmon, Washington
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Headed there this Friday

Pretty stoked to be taking the kids out of school for 5 days and getting down there. Anyone that has details on lines @ china, snow hole I'd love to hear it. And the guide says that bodacious bounce has some stuff in it at lower flows?


Cheers

Donut
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Old 09-13-2015   #10
 
Missoula, Montana
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Stay left at China and watch for the hole at the end. Snowhole is a pretty obvious start middle right and move left after the first rocks. Bodacious bounce was pretty straightforward when we were there, It's a straight shot on the right if I recall.
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