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Just got off the river (afternoon of 5/31). I‘ll be brief as I need to get some sleep. Our party of 6, experienced Marsh Creek boaters, launched 5/26 on Marsh on a planned 4 day trip. We spent two extra days because of severe issues regarding wood in the river. 3 of our 6 catarafts got pinned to some degree in Marsh in one location. We partially cut the obstruction and lost some equipment (oars, throw lines, etc). It doesn’t matter where because it is ever changing. There is so much moving wood. We made it to the confluence of Bear Valley Creek by evening of 5/26. We intended to run Dagger the next day, as our group has only had to portage once previously because of near river wide wood blockage around the corner. Our hopes of running Dagger were dashed when we scouted around the corner and found a river wide log jam. At that point we unloaded gear and carried our cats up to the Dagger campground, knowing the location of the jam would not allow for a portage. We assumed that if the jam didn’t blow we’d have to wait till the road opened to get someone to help haul our cats to Boundary Creek. Mid morning 5/28 the left side (river left) blew out so we decided to finish our portage and re launch just below the campground.

Soon after we launched, somewhere between Boundary Creek and Murph’s Hole, we passed what we assumed to be Mr. Gray’s cataraft (the cat boater that unfortunately passed several days before). Just past Murph’s hole we encountered a very serious, very large partially submerged log that was moving vertically in the water column. As it rose up, it flipped two of us, and both of us AND our two cats ended up going under the log. I got rescued by a pal after a short but intense swim. My other pal caught his boat and using flip lines we right sided his in a small eddy further down the river. Though my boat was caught by my buddies several times, it was either released for safety (going through Velvet) or just couldn’t be held in small eddies upside down. It was finally caught, and right sided about a mile above Sheepeater in a very tight, dangerous log infested quagmire. It was beat up pretty bad including a puncture to its inner bladder (a wonderful old Aire Jag). I repaired it at Sheepeater the next day, after doing some minor repairs and temporary inflating about a half mile above the camp where we tied it off after its initial rescue the day before.

I need to also mention that there was a huge log on the rock at Velvet. It completely blocked the high water sneak on left and made it impossible to do the hard left pull around the rock to avoid the hole at Velvet. In other words you have to run the hole. We also scouted (which we never do) Pistol. It was clear but big. Below Indian Creek we had very good water, BUT there are many more logs in the river than usual AND it is ever changing now. Just because the road may open one of these days you better be prepared for very dangerous and shifting log conditions ANYWHERE. Please be careful out there.
 

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Just got off the river (afternoon of 5/31). I‘ll be brief as I need to get some sleep. Our party of 6 experienced Marsh Creek boaters launched 5/26 on Marsh on a planned 4 day trip. We spent two xtra days because of severe issues regarding wood in the river. 3 of our 6 catarafts got pinned to some degree in Marsh in one location. We partially cut the ......................Please be careful out there.
I might be helpful for others unaware of the dangers if you can provide first hand information to the Middle Fork Ranger Office at: [email protected]
 

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I might be helpful for others unaware of the dangers if you can provide first hand information to the Middle Fork Ranger Office at: [email protected]

5 minutes after you pass each of these hazards they have already shifted, changed, evolved.

5 minutes later the whole river is different again.
 

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Correct you are. It just reinforces the dangers for those than might be clueless or not in tune with forums on the subject. Recently the USFS removed the warnings of Marsh Creek dangers and nothing is noted on their current MF "Notifications".
 

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So are you going to rally for Thursday???
Too rich for my blood. I think we're releasing our 6/10 launch as well. The 7/1 trip should be just fine, even if we aren't turning the corner.
Launching Friday for Cat instead.

@Dangerfield ranger office will have some firsthand reporting by Monday. Maybe some live updates if they send him with a radio or PLB.
 

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I might be helpful for others unaware of the dangers if you can provide first hand information to the Middle Fork Ranger Office at: [email protected]
Dangerfield we passed the info on to Audra who was running Indian Creek when we checked in, and as you suggested the MF river address and to Courtney Frost who took over for Donna with the MF Ranger District.
 

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If you don’t believe the text I got from the river ranger you’re welcome to email the river office.

[email protected]

if anyone is interested in picking up our 6/10 launch PM me and I’ll get you in contact with the permit holder. I will be out of service 6/3-6/7.
 
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