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Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?

Posted by brentaustin 
Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?
July 10, 2017 09:18PM
Paddled the Cheoah with Wes on Sunday. I know that Flunker was out there on Saturday. Where are all the BWA boaters on the Cheoah these days? Use to be we had 17 - 20 out there. I don't know what is up. Wes and I were somewhere on the run when we discussed it. I remember back a half a dozen years ago a weekend trip with about 10 BWAers on the Green Narrows. Where is the next new crowd for the upper Gauley? I remember the first year I organized a "First Timers Trip" on the Upper Gauley we must have had a dozen new paddlers. We did not scout anything and everyone did well. I guess Flunker, Majick Mike, KYJimmy, Hettichs and you other younger chargers, need to rally crews to go boat fun shit. Us old cats will see you out there of course.

I will be on the Pigeon most afternoons this week if any of you BWAers are in the neighborhood. Not sure what I am doing this weekend but will try to post if something develops.


Re: Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?
July 11, 2017 12:37AM
Somebody needs to light that fire! Hopefully I'll be back out there joining the old timers sometime here soon cool smiley

Re: Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?
July 11, 2017 12:51PM
I forgot about Cheoah till Wes mentioned it Thursday night. It's tough to pass up the beauty of Plateau and Obed summer runs. Other then one other crew we had the rivers to ourselves. Five rivers in two days. Ran into Adam Leftwich said high. He and I had a simular conversation at Lilly Pad Brewery and Campground. Seems we have much smaller crews scattered all over the place on weekends. Yet we are making the investment into building boaters that love the times on the water and at one point will have the ability to boat everything with you. The Vikings drew a crew to the New this weekend and Week of Rivers grabbed a few.
Re: Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?
July 11, 2017 08:14PM
I know that for myself I am investing a fair amount of time getting my youngins boating. My 11 year old is doing great on Elkhorn. I had him run it at 1480 and he had a couple swims. I would love some of the bigger rivers, weekends and trips there get me stuffed. I look forward to the days when my young boaters are older which should make it a great deal easier for those trips with you folks.

I also scored and got the wife down Elkhorn and she loved it! Soon I will have a boating family and traveling all around. I can hardly wait.

Andrew Van Horn
Captain of the Pirate Ducky Fleet
Re: Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?
July 15, 2017 12:48PM
The Bolender clan has been chill lately with the new crew member. Hawkeye is doing well, he's three months old tomorrow.

I'll see y'all at the summer party.

Re: Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?
July 16, 2017 10:15PM
Duuuude! I almost forgot my password! This is a very good post. I wish I could get out more! I'm with Andrew, I've been investing in my daughter slot lately. She's developed s solid pool roll and I can't wait till the khorn comes up enough so we can work the shit out of the lower and get her rolling in some current. Yes, I feel as if I've platoed @ 3plus, 4minus. I will do something about that! Brent Austin, you are a true leader in helping folks step it up, so are you Wes prince. It is hard to go all the time with so much going on in my life(work, family), but God I miss the water! It's all I ever think about! For shag it's worth, I'll be at the ocoee this coming weekend on sat. Bringing the wife and two of the kids. Gonna stick them in a raft and I'd like to get two laps in. We will be cabining it @au. Any takers? Shuler
Re: Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?
July 19, 2017 09:51AM
Thanks Tim. Hope to boat with you soon.
Re: Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?
July 19, 2017 02:44PM
For those of us coming up through the classes, getting comfortable on Ocoee and looking forward to first descents of the Lower at Gauleyfest this year, what would you say about the Cheoah?

Ben Mudd
BWA Treasurer
Re: Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?
July 19, 2017 08:33PM
I think it's a serious step up from the middle ocoee. Very continuous, few eddies? Is that accurate?
Re: Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?
July 25, 2017 04:29PM
Raisin' youngins.....
Re: Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?
July 26, 2017 11:20AM
Hi Ben,
The Cheoah (lower harder section) is 4+ high volume creeking with physical moves, many boofs, and powerful water at standard release (1000 cfs). In my opinion, it is comparable in difficulty to the Upper Yough (although perhaps a bit less technical), maybe similar in push and hole boofing to Lower Big Creek at high levels, and a smidge easier than the Upper Gauley. Cheoah (lower section) is more technical and harder than the Lower Gauley and Upper Ocoee (both 4- imho), although these help to give you a feel for the Cheoah's push factor. Of note, it is very beneficial to be solid at boofing holes (and rocks) on the lower section of the Cheoah.
Above all, take your time and make sure that it's a fun process!
I hope this helps. Feel free to PM me with any other questions or about prep runs.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/26/2017 11:50AM by Flunked.
Re: Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?
July 26, 2017 12:06PM
Hey John, thanks for the info. I'm going to get my first run on the Upper Ocoee this weekend, going to hopefully be doing middle and upper laps all weekend. Assuming that goes well and continues to for the next couple months, planning to hit the Lower Gauley at 'Fest. And after that . . . I don't really know. I've talked to a lot of people about a lot of things to do with moving up to being a solid class III paddler and beginning to run some class IVs but I guess I'm not really sure where I want to go from there or what the options are. I guess it'll be something to think about and talk about over the coming months.

Ben Mudd
BWA Treasurer
Re: Cheoah Sunday - where are the BWAers?
July 27, 2017 03:12PM
Yes we had a most propitious day on the mighty Cheoah! Wish it ran less in Spring and more in Summer. Regarding river difficulties and "stepping up" I consider the Keel Haulers's page on river difficulties a vital resource and pretty accurate:
Like John, feel the UY / Cheoah at 2-2.2 are more similar in difficulty but on the Keelhauler page the UY is 2 pts more difficult. I suspect this is related to the remoteness of the meat of the UY whereas the Cheoah is mostly roadside.
I'm also in strong agreement with the late Jeff West regarding the ability to become a Class V boater by training on the Ocoee. It's an amazing training resource. Not by doing endless laps on the same common lines of course, but by working the difficult attainments and challenging moves. Jeff's book on the Ocoee is an amazing training guide and I believe is still available at RCO. Will never part with mine or my backup copy, worth it's weight in gold to me. Want to get better, get that book and get to work.
Personal story - when I started guiding on the Ocoee in 1986, I was decent Class III boater. The Ocoee was still a challenge to me in a kayak. That Summer, one of my fellow guides Dan Centofanti, a phenomenal Ocoee boater in the day (and still does wkend guiding I think) took me under his wing to show me some of the challenging moves and I went to work. The next Spring I did the Gauley marathon at 3600, having never seen it and boating only with a raft and another guide in a kayak who had also never seen it. Only scouted Pillow. One flip at Sweets, otherwise a dry hair day and felt confident after the first few hard rapids. All because I learned to work the Ocoee. Jeff's book has many more moves than I ever learned. Get it. Looking forward to Fall week of rivers with you Brent! (First 2 Gauley wkends and 5 days of UY in between smiling smiley) )

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