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Looking to boat Nov 4-5

Posted by JimC 
Looking to boat Nov 4-5
November 03, 2017 12:08AM
I am a bit late to be planning, but want to boat somewhere this weekend. Any plans forming that I might be able to join?
Re: Looking to boat Nov 4-5
November 03, 2017 03:19PM
Cheoah Sat, Nanty Sun while Karen takes a lesson with Juliette at ERA. I'm going to do at least one Speeder lap on Nanty - may do several vs a playboat lap and Speeder lap... Mon also boating - not sure where yet.... Nanty, BSF Canyon laps, Pigeon, Elkhorn.....

Re: Looking to boat Nov 4-5
November 03, 2017 03:54PM
Hello Wes. What section of the Cheoah are you planning to boat and what class level are you expecting? I am comfortable on the middle section of the Ocoee and I did the lower Gauley for the first time this year. It was a successful run with no swims but parts felt like a definite challenge to my ability level. I have never been on the Cheoah before. Jim C 859-5nine5-7301
Re: Looking to boat Nov 4-5
November 04, 2017 09:32AM
I'd like to do Knights Bridge today. I have a beginner friend but wouldn't do it without three people
Re: Looking to boat Nov 4-5
November 04, 2017 11:48PM
Sorry I didn’t catch this Jim before now. When my Highlander wouldn’t shift into overdrive yesterday - changing to Karen’s Camry was stressful and hectic. Barely made it down here to boat today.
IMO the Cheoah is a big step up from the LG - even though its only 3 points higher on the Keelhauler page. I generally recommend the Keelhauler page for comparing rivers - but in this case I think the 3 point difference is misleading because of the major difference in style between the runs. It’s not so much the rapids are that much more difficult individually. It has more to do with the continuous nature of some sections, the trees, and some parts of the run require some creeking skills. LG lines are for the most part a mile wide and easy to make - line up the entrance and paddle - not requiring much maneuvering. Waves / holes aren’t really bigger on the Cheoah - but many of the lines are tighter and some rapids are long requiring more stamina. A swim on the Cheoah could beat you up in some rapids and pretty hazardous as well. I’m not meaning to be discouraging here - I fully encourage boaters to step up to this amazing run when they are ready. But it would be wise to do your homework on this one. Read the AW page and check out some You Tube videos. Are your creeking skills solid? If not Winter is a great time to work on those with Smokies / Plateau trips with our solid creeking members. Low water Russell Fork Gorge also is a great resource for developing these skills and the Local crew boats it almost all weekend days when it’s in the 300-500 range - good flows for developing creeking skills. Then head down and join the crew in a run down the easier / safer upper section to the FS bridge and decide if you are ready for more action.
I invite others who have recently stepped up to the Cheoah to offer their input as well. Hope to see you out there soon!

Re: Looking to boat Nov 4-5
November 05, 2017 07:47AM
I agree with Wes on this stuff, including that he was late yesterday and there is always some reason. Once, a tree fell across the road as he was headed to the Cheoah, no shit, I am not making it up. It would not be shocking if meteor strike were to delay him an hour. Of course his car has issues, it has 100,000 more miles on it than my truck, which has 390,000 on it.

The Cheoah, I think, is on par with the skill sets used on the Upper Gauley, although they are very different creatures. I think the upper stretch of the Cheoah is almost as challenging as the section below the bridge. A lot is coming at you fast. And, there are definite hazards. Mike Huggins died below Bear Creek on the right side in one of those hydraulics (another reason I like the West Prong side). I was there that day and saw the CPR attempts. Good paddler and a great guy that I used to hang out with at Damnation at the UG. So, I think you want to have some game and a solid roll for sure. And go with someone that can show you lines. Wes is great for that. So is Clay.
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