Sunday, November 07, 2010

Updates November 7th, 2010

Before continuing to read this blog, just remember that the rivers are always changing here in Ecuador, so after the next big rainstorm, this info may already be outdated.
Boat cautiously and scout often if things look weird, or go with a guide or friend who knows the rivers!

Now, onto what we know on Nov. 7th, 2010.

I would say that every run has lots of subtle changes; but there are very few big changes. We were quite surprised to find that more had NOT changed in Tena after the big floods they got. While the rivers there are somewhat different, we were expecting more complete changes.

So, here's a list of things to note:

Jondachi/Hollin: There was a new landslide on the Hollin River below the rapid called "waffle-era." It seems to be constantly changing, so scout it! It was runnable last week, but the rapid is super unstable and will most likely change with each rain event.

Upper Jondachi: The biggest rapid of note is the Old Sticky Fingers. At the level we saw it at (a little over 1 on the gauge) the rapid was all but unrunnable. A new rock blocks the right hand run and stuffs you into an overhanging AND undercut boulder on the right. For those who don't know the names, Sticky Fingers is probably a little over an hour into the run (depending on how often you scout). The bummer is, it's a pretty innocuous rapid that is easy to blunder into. So, if you or your group doesn’t know the run, just scout whenever you are unsure.

The sieve at Tres Huevos has also opened back up, but the normal line is still ok to run. Just be careful of the sieve if you are eddy hoping and trying to get to the last eddy on river left to scout. Personally, I'd just take out 1 or 2 eddies up to scout--you'll want to run from up here anyways.

Typhoid Falls was more or less the same. The 2nd drop has an avoidable tree in it, but it makes getting to the middle exit slot quite difficult, and the right slot ain't that good!

Rio Quijos: Nothing major really. The 1st rapid of Cheesehouse where they’ve been working burying the pipeline will probably need to be scouted each run this year. They don’t seem to be working there anymore, but the “unnatural” river channel they’ve made is made up of lots of dirt and small rocks and I imagine things will be shifting in there for a long time.

Cosanga: The first real rapid of the Lower Cosanga has changed for the worst (it’s the one we call triple drop). There are lots of rocks in the way of where you want to go. So, boat scout well, or scout this one.

Nothing more of note to report here. Lots of small changes on the Piatua, Misahualli, Oyacachi and other rivers, but you’ll figure them out once you get there!

Happy paddling.