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Thread: This Is the Grand Canyon

  1. #1
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    Default This Is the Grand Canyon

    From a 2012 winter trip--Vasey's Paradise:

    Vasey's Paradise.2.jpg

    Class III whitewater:

    Flavell in rapids.2.jpg

    Class VI logistics:

    IMG_6190 (2).jpg
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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    More whitewater:

    Portola salute.2.jpg

    Lunch break high above camp:

    high above camp.jpg

    More whitewater:

    Susie Too.2.jpg
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    Wow.
    If I use the word "God," I sure don't mean an old man in the sky who just loves the occasional goat sacrifice. - Anne Lamott

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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    Going left--the WRONG way--at Bedrock Rapid:

    Bedrock Rapid.2.jpg

    Havasu Canyon:

    Havasu.2.jpg

    Boats on shore:

    boats on shore.jpg
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  5. #5
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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    Quote Originally Posted by TomF View Post
    Wow.
    'Zactly right...
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  6. #6
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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    You don't have to be prepared as long as you're willing to suffer the consequences.

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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    Shrike kill:

    shrike kill.jpg

    Deer Creek Canyon Narrows:

    Deer Creek.jpg

    Afternoon sun on the Redwall Limestone:

    IMG_6446 (2).jpg
    Attached Images Attached Images
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    Slot canyon hike:

    Forster Canyon.jpg

    Frogs in Forster Canyon (yep, frogs--I thought they were sheep when I first heard them):



    Descending Forster Canyon:

    Slot canyon descent (2).jpg
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  9. #9
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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    Thanks for sharing...
    I once thought I was wrong, but I was wrong, I wasn't wrong.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    Wow, such great rafting pictures. You’re an adventurer.

    Thanks for posting.
    Choose wisely -Treat kindly...

    A secret to a good marriage is to have a quick mind and a slow mouth...



    S/V ORCA 38' Herreshoff Ketch

  11. #11
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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    Love those drift boats!
    Skip

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  12. #12
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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    Quote Originally Posted by SKIP KILPATRICK View Post
    Love those drift boats!
    Yeah, the boats are amazing. They are all replicas of historic whitewater boats rowed by some of the pioneers of Grand Canyon whitewater--there were two cataract boats, the red-blue Flavell and Susie R (1940s-50s era design, flat bottom, low freeboard, and no rocker), one unique boat , the white-blue Gem, with fairly low freeboard and continuous rocker (probably inspired by McKenzie River drift boats to some extent, designed by Moulty Fulmer), and two 1960s-era decked dories (red/blue and white/turquoise) very much inspired by McKenzie River drift boats, with high freeboard and volume, but rocker only at the ends.

    I was invited along on that trip as a writer, to write an (almost) real-time blog for the website historicriverboatsafloat--you can find the blog online HERE if you want a long account of what a 29-day Grand Canyon trip looked like to a novice rower (I rowed an 18' baggage raft, not a wooden boat).

    Tom
    Last edited by WI-Tom; 10-28-2020 at 09:58 PM.
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  13. #13
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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    Quote Originally Posted by Spin_Drift View Post
    Wow, such great rafting pictures. You’re an adventurer.

    Thanks for posting.
    I'm a scaredy cat. Fortunately, the Grand Canyon is in many ways a very forgiving set of rapids to run, especially if you have someone knowledgeable along to guide the inexperienced--and we did.

    With very few exceptions, each rapid ends with a significant section of flat water after, which makes any rescues much simpler to pull off. Even better, the rapids are almost all non-technical, requiring few fast moves or maneuvering--if you get your entry point correct, and keep your raft pointed straight into the waves, you'll usually do OK. And the more challenging rapids come later in the trip, after you'd have lots of practice on smaller rapids. I've done this trip three times now, and my impression is that it's actually a pretty good introduction to whitewater for a beginning rower, especially someone who knows how to use oars from flatwater rowing, AND has some experienced people along to guide them through each scout.

    Honestly, the best part for me is just being on the river for so long with like-minded people, which allows for layover days and side hikes in places that would be very hard to reach on foot. The whitewater is not the highlight, though that, too, is fun.

    Tom
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  14. #14
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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    A bit more of the boats. Here's Gem, a replica of the boat designed/built in the 1950s by Moulty Fulmer, a pioneer of Grand Canyon whitewater--probably the first boat in the Canyon to feature continuous rocker for maneuverability:

    Attachment 71299

    And Gem's interior layout (a bucket boat--i.e., not a self-bailing cockpit):

    Attachment 71300
    Last edited by WI-Tom; 10-24-2020 at 10:33 AM.
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  15. #15
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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    Here's Flavell, a replica of an earlier cataract boat of the same name. Low freeboard, very little rocker, if any. Another bucket boat:

    Attachment 71301

    By the way, these historic replicas all feature the original paint schemes, which were designed by Disney artist Harper Goff. I think those colors really look great in the Canyon, though I never would have hit on them myself.

    Already posted above, but here is Flavell in action:

    Attachment 71303

    And one more look, with the similar Susie R in the background--rocker only a bit at the ends, not continuous:

    Attachment 71304
    Last edited by WI-Tom; 10-24-2020 at 10:33 AM.
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  16. #16
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    Default Re: This Is the Grand Canyon

    So, the order of evolution was: cataract boats like Flavell and Susie R (decked, low freeboard, little flare, little rocker); then Moulty Fulmer's Gem (decked, continuous rocker, and at least partly inspired by McKenzie River drift boats); and then the big high-volume, high-freeboard decked dories that were very much developments of the McKenzie River boats--a good amount of rocker, but still a long flat run in the middle, not continuous.

    Portola is a good example (a replica of a 1960s era boat; if I remember right, the original was actually fiberglass; the replica is wooden). The high freeboard and volume make these very good boats for the big waves of the Grand Canyon, but less optimal for technical whitewater that requires a lot of maneuvering, such as the Rogue River in the PNW.

    Portola.jpg

    And here's the Portola's sister ship, the Susie Too:

    Richard in the Susie Too.jpg
    You don't have to be prepared as long as you're willing to suffer the consequences.

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