I apologize for the silence but it seems I have been too busy enjoying the summer and not updating the blog. Lots of cool photos and video taken but for now I will just try and chip away at it all and share some of the adventures.
WTF Tales- The moment you realize shit has gone bad. Unlike when climbing, there is no pause. Nobody to yell at to “Take!!” and no opportunity to plug a piece of gear to lower off of. This is one of the things I love about kayaking. It’s a commitment that requires a unique combination of skill and mental strength.
Big Timber Falls is located at the end of the Disneyland-like kayak run on Big Timber Creek. I ran this drop years ago at a much higher flow, so I knew the challenges and the “throw the dice” quality this drop is known for. Chris Johnson wanted it more than anyone and he was focused on executing the line. He studied it for about 15 minutes, walking the falls from bottom to top, taking mental snapshots of the moves. Tom Sunderland and I hadn’t ruled the drop out, but figured we would see how Chris’s line went before deciding.
Needless to say, the low water was going to make this drop a bit bumpier than usual. As Chris made the initial entrance moves, all was good until he hit the infamous Rooster Island. As he rocketed off the island, he spun in mid-air and landed backwards. Still moving at a high speed, he quickly prepared for the unplanned line. Running drops backwards is never a preferred option, but he kept his head and stayed focused to make the best of the situation. As he went over the falls, the creek once again decided to choose his line for him. He bounced off the wall at the lip and then proceeded to spin again as he hit the pool below.
As Chris resurfaced, we knew all was good as he was grinning from ear to ear. Chris made our decision about running the drop very easy. We grabbed our boats and headed to the truck.