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If you are going for the party go to the lochsa as its a great time memorial day wknd. As the whitewater goes I would definitely go for the NF payette. I grew up around the lochsa and love that river as it is pretty non-consequential straightforward big water class 4 but the couple of times we did the NF the whitewater blew me away (the 15 miles of continuous class 5 whitewater was unbelievable). Don't know if this will help as its coming from a rafters perspective.
 

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North Fork is super low right now. That may be good or bad, depending on what you're wanting.

Wait.... when did a rafter do the NF? Cat boat? I can only think of a handful of rafts that have been down the NF.
 

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Tenacious B
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NFP is a pretty fun flow right now, but I'm a cat boater. Tons of fun surf holes on the lower 5 especially. Locsha will likely be in the medium range unless they get a little heat spell and some rain. Dirty 30 is a fun one too.
 

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Tenacious B
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It's been in the 1,100 range for about 3 weeks now. We don't usually get this long of a pre-season window on the NF so its been kinda nice! They'll start turning it up more here soon.
 

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North Fork is super low right now. That may be good or bad, depending on what you're wanting.

Wait.... when did a rafter do the NF? Cat boat? I can only think of a handful of rafts that have been down the NF.
We did one top to bottom 3 years ago during labor day wknd three years ago r2in in a raft then did two trips down the next year on labor day wknd. We missed this last year as made a last minute decision on labor day to head up to BC to take a go on the box canyon. Threw a link below to our second year runs down Jakes. Its a great run in a raft (scary as hell but fun).

https://vimeo.com/29202441
 

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The Lochsa will likely be low, barring a rain event. I consider low below 4' (not the gauge height from the internet gauge) or 8000'. It is still a hoot, lots of rapids and plenty of interesting things to go into, but it's true nature starts to show at 4. Med is 4-6' (8000-14,000) when it is getting big and fun and pushy. High is 6+, 14k and up. Last weekend it hit 20k, wish I had been there. The most fun on the Lochsa is doing the upper section, meatier and more technical, but below 4' the water slows so much doing the entire run in one day makes for a long day. 4' and below and the upper loses it's claim over the lower section. You'd probably enjoy Fish cr too, a tributary that you can drive 1 mi up and hike further. If you like the NFP you also should check out the SF clearwater, golden canyon section. Even the mickey mouse section is great, more technical than the lochsa, lower volume ledges and holes.
 

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North Fork is super low right now. That may be good or bad, depending on what you're wanting.

Wait.... when did a rafter do the NF? Cat boat? I can only think of a handful of rafts that have been down the NF.
I rafted it with a bunch of people, I think in 2002, maybe 2003. I think we didn't do Jacob's ladder though. It was scary, but we actually didn't have any flips, and just one swimmer. Not sure if I would raft it again today.
 

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Nuckin' Futs!

Crazy! I always considered the NF to be a suicide run. Probably from reading all the incident reports on americanwhitewater.org.
 

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We did one top to bottom 3 years ago during labor day wknd three years ago r2in in a raft then did two trips down the next year on labor day wknd. We missed this last year as made a last minute decision on labor day to head up to BC to take a go on the box canyon. Threw a link below to our second year runs down Jakes. Its a great run in a raft (scary as hell but fun).

https://vimeo.com/29202441
That is bad ass.
 

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Laura, You really think she will be below 8 grand in a week and a half? Maybe its just wishful thinking but I'm hoping shes got another peak in her. This past weekend was big!! I should have never left... damn work.
 

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I don't feel strongly about it, but there is a fair chance. If a kayaker is considering NFP vs Lochsa, I just want to make sure they know there is a risk that it'll be pushing the "low" range before they skip the NFP and drive all the way up, or choose to drive past the SFC. I recommend the SFC if you want a change from the NFP. Plus, it is usually uncrowded, in a beautiful quiet canyon. At least unless there are fishermen out. Memorial Day weekend may be another story.
 

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I think the Lochsa has another possible peak, but it won't be a sustained one. I doubt it'll hit 22k again....maybe 18-19k?

MDW could be anywhere from 8k-16k. :lol:



I should be a meteorologist!!!
 

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Completely depends on the weather. I don't think there's enough water for it to stay at 16k for the next 2 weeks....so you'd better hope for cold weather for me this weekend and warm weather toward the end of next week for you! :lol:

Pretty cool how quickly that river's flow goes up and down so quickly. I'm used to a lot bigger watersheds that rise and fall a lot slower. The PNW paddlers and their rainfed whitewater probably think it moves slowly.
 
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