It’s been a crazy spring, lots going on with family, school, and starting a company. I’ve barely had time to sleep, but I find paddling refreshes me in a way nothing else does. I’ve snuck out for a few early mornings and late afternoons, and a couple Saturdays. Most of it has been on familiar terrain, with groups that move quickly, so I have hardly taken any photos. Several have sat on my hardrive, waiting for me to get a moment to put them online, so this page is a bit of a clearing house. Pictures include three local runs:

  • Giant Gap – A classic class IV+ run. It’s only about an hour drive from my house, then a steep 2 mile hike to the put in. The rewards are huge, super fun rapids in a gorgeous undeveloped steep canyon. A true five-star classic. We waited for 2 hours at the put in for some members of our group, who got lost on the hike. Still a great day.
  • Cache Creek – This is a fun, class II+, about an hour west of our house, just east of Napa Valley. It’s got some good rapids, and an easy shuttle. Kim and I paddled this one sunday afternoon in our two-person whitewater kayak, with a friend and his son. Until the takeout, we didn’t see a single other person on the river. Nice.
  • Pauley Creek – The water looked a little low, but I was desperate for some steep drops, and given the way flows were looking this spring, I knew I couldn’t be picky. A group of us headed north to Downieville, to the classic creeks there. We hiked in to Middle Pauley, and had a great day. Most of the big drops were clean, but I did bump a lot of rocks on the smaller rapids. Still, sunny and warm, with 15+ foot waterfalls equals a good day out.
  • Hopefully there will be more paddling this year. The snowpack is dwindling quickly, but there are still the dam-release runs.

    I thought this shot from Pauley Creek was cool. The light glowing in the pool at the base was 10 times more impressive in person. It’s moments like this that make spending time on rivers so cool.

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