Sunday, June 01, 2008

Captain CRUNCH spring break!

What up All!

So this spring we got hit with a couple huge storms that spiked all of the best stuff in the Southeast up to some huge levels. One such storm provided me with a most excellent spring break from school. First up Silver Run Falls.

Silver Run is a sick rapid that consists of a rhododendron tunnel entrance, into a big twisty slide, and then directly off a 30 to 35 foot waterfall. It's one of my favourite rapids in the Southeast for sure, but it's super tough to catch with enough water.

Jesse Wilinsky bombing down the entrance...

Toby McDermott with a less than optimal line! He was ok though.

Beautiful sunset over a richter high Toxaway River. That place is incredible.

So the next day we were torn between a potential West Virginia weekend or staying and paddling the epic flows that were already occurring in our backyard. After talking to Kelsey Thompson and the Bryans I made the decision to head up to WV with Jesse Wilinsky. Our mad dash north was motivated by one very classic Southeastern waterfall...

Captain Crunch Falls.

Photo: Adam Johnson

So Captain Crunch and the Laurel River used to be a staple of West Virginia creekboaters, but a huge flood back around 2001 destroyed the creek, and made the waterfall a fairly sketchy proposition. It's been run since then only a few times, and I've definitely been itching to bomb off the lip of that thing. The level was a bit low for it, but Jesse, myself and Kelsey decided to go for it.

Myself on the lip.

Credit: Bryan Kirk

Impact position.

Credit: Bryan Kirk

10 minutes after running Captain Crunch, we were treated to a couple of the best waves on earth. You forget the 4.5 hour drive in about two seconds on these waves, and at this point I was super stoked about our decision to make the drive up.

So the next day we wanted to go for another Fayetteville double header... Mann's Creek in the morning and a Dries surf session in the afternoon. This is definitely one of the best days of kayaking that you can have on the planet. Mann's is a great continuous class 5 creek that just keeps going and going, and both times I've been down it I've just followed Bryan Kirk...

Here's Bryan boofing over some sketchiness in Goliath.

This is a standard scene on Mann's... chaos. This rapid, I think it's called Double Play, is pretty stressful. We ran the left line due to new wood on the right.

Bryan setting safety below Liquid Draino.

After Mann's you get to paddle the moving ocean known as the New River at 60,000 cfs.

Uhh yeah this was F#^$ing huge. A bit higher and you might just have the ultimate wave.

Signing out for now... Good lines!
Chris Gragtmans

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