We had a torrential Pine River today caused by fierce rains over the weekend. This being braved by seven hardened and experienced paddlers and two new to the sport. Participating were: 1) Wayne A., 2) Lois G., 3) John H., 4) Irene M a new member, 5) Paul M. a new member, 6) Jacqui M., 7) Marlene P., 8) John W, 9) Mariah W. and 10) Piper the Belgian Malinois.
A fast and furious river made for challenging and exciting paddling. We experienced many snags, downfalls and trees across the river, along with some fun minor rapids and a rainstorm. There were no gravel bars today!
We disembarked for lunch at the Skookum Access. What a beautiful place to rest and converse. The new members were not left out and felt very welcomed. In fact, Paul was quickly disabused gratefully of a lot of preconceptions about gear and new kayaks that he and Irene were intending to buy. Thanks everyone, especially Lois.
The only mishap occurred towards the end, when Irene and Paul were rudely jettisoned from their crafts by a pair of fallen trees across the river. Paul was pulled under and was able to maintain possession of kayak and paddle, then was able to beach and pump it out.
Irene, however, was washed down the river (feet first!), but was able to catch onto another fallen tree, along with her kayak full of water. This is where the experience and professionalism of their companions kicked in. John H, first to Irene, comforted her and secured her kayak with the throw bag line that Wayne tossed to them. Wayne pulled the kayak to shore, where John pumped it out. Wayne, in the meantime threw the line back to Irene, so that she could secure her gear to it and have the gear pulled to shore, then Lois instructed Irene on how to enter the water and hold the rope before Wayne tossed it to her again and pulled her across to shore. A well oiled and excellent rescue. Amazingly, nothing was lost and no injuries.
Thanks to all! A great adventure! Thanks to John H. and Lois G., wonderful and very conscientious trip leaders. Would not hesitate to go with this group again.
Trip report by Irene and Paul, photos by John H
Note, I was too busy with the rescue to get photos of the operation.
Piper and John Walton
Irene, Jacqui, and John Walton
From this photo, you can see how swollen the Upper Pine is