Professor Paddle: OP this weekend?
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franzhorner
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  Quote franzhorner Replybullet Topic: OP this weekend?
    Posted: 17 Nov 2010 at 10:03am
Looking at the forecast I am thinking about a Matheny Creek weekend.  Any interest out there???
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tiziak
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  Quote tiziak Replybullet Posted: 17 Nov 2010 at 10:57am
Hmmmmmmmmmm
If you don't know where you are going, any road will get you there.

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Jed Hawkes
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  Quote Jed Hawkes Replybullet Posted: 17 Nov 2010 at 5:55pm
Yeah buddy, maybe a matheny / e fork humpy weekend.
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  Quote fiddleyak Replybullet Posted: 18 Nov 2010 at 8:39am
I'd like to check out Matheny. Looks like the queets will be a bit lower than recommended though. Franz, are you taking a craft with any space for passengers?
Then I'm thinking about some single-blade action on the middle run EF Humptulips.
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  Quote PowWrangler Replybullet Posted: 18 Nov 2010 at 9:18am
What day is looking better for Matheny?  I can't do the whole weekend, but might be interested in a day mission.
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franzhorner
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  Quote franzhorner Replybullet Posted: 18 Nov 2010 at 11:47am
It is looking like it will be a bit low.  I will have to look at the forecast tomorrow.  i really would like at least 10-12K on the the Queets to enable an upper run.  I will keep posting here...
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  Quote franzhorner Replybullet Posted: 19 Nov 2010 at 8:38am
Lets do it.  Do you guys have a rig with clearance??  As I recall the land of abandoned culverts makes for some interesting spots on the way to the Upper.  Bike shuttle on Matheny is quite pleasant actually.  Also when will you head out?  I'm thinking of heading out tonite....

Give a call or PM!  I will be going to a work celebration party from 1-3 today so I won't be able to talk then but the rest of the day I should be open...too oh 6 six nein 6 won won nein 5....
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  Quote Jed Hawkes Replybullet Posted: 19 Nov 2010 at 9:21am
upper matheny rd was clear and the bridges are all in working order as of last spring. you can drive all the way to the bridge that crosses the put-in creek.
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  Quote franzhorner Replybullet Posted: 19 Nov 2010 at 10:12am
I'm down for hiking to the Upper.  We should get an early start though.  Maybe we could meet at 9AM?  We will either camp at the lower put in or the middle put in....
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  Quote franzhorner Replybullet Posted: 19 Nov 2010 at 10:45am
Anyone else want in???
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  Quote PowWrangler Replybullet Posted: 19 Nov 2010 at 11:28am
Is much rain expected on the Peninsula tonight?  A few of us are game if the Queets goes above 10k.   
How much of a hike is it from the washout to the upper put-in?
 
My main interest is in the upper so would meeting at the washout around 10 be ok, or does that not give us enough light?
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franzhorner
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  Quote franzhorner Replybullet Posted: 19 Nov 2010 at 12:25pm
I'm going to camp up there tonite.  leaving the city around 7:30 or so.  I'll be at either the put in for the upper (at the bridge going over the creek) or where the road is washed out by 10.  We will wait there til 11 for slickhorn before heading down.  I'll either do bike shuttle in the morning or have my bike stashed at the put in for the lower....
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  Quote franzhorner Replybullet Posted: 19 Nov 2010 at 2:10pm
Tell nick to get over the fence. If Aaron williams did it Nik will have no problem....
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  Quote pottert Replybullet Posted: 19 Nov 2010 at 3:00pm
I'm interested, where is this river and whats it like?
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  Quote jalmquist Replybullet Posted: 19 Nov 2010 at 5:26pm
Just FYI - there's about 17 of us heading out to Matheny this weekend.  Hope to see you - the more the merrier - but I thought I'd give you a heads-up so it's not a shock when you see a crowd on the OP... 
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  Quote franzhorner Replybullet Posted: 19 Nov 2010 at 6:02pm
Awesome!!!!! Are you heading out tonight or in the morning???
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  Quote franzhorner Replybullet Posted: 19 Nov 2010 at 6:25pm
In that case maybe I don't need to bring my bike!!!
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  Quote jalmquist Replybullet Posted: 19 Nov 2010 at 6:53pm

Most are headed in the AM, a few took off this afteroon to sneak in an extra night in the woods.  Plan is to meet at the WB / FS 21 Rd. bridge at 9:30.  Just to warn you - it's a WKC trip.  But there are certainly a few non-club members joining the crew.  About half will be "middle section only" types, but about half will probably want to do upper and or lower.  My plan is to try and link upper & middle or middle & lower with the middle-only crew meeting us or taking out half way. 

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  Quote franzhorner Replybullet Posted: 22 Nov 2010 at 11:09am
Awesome weekend Brian!!!

It should also be noted that even at 6500 on the Queets gauge there is ample flow to run the upper.  Although Korb says 10K and above there were a ton of hardshell boats that had a great time at that flow....
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  Quote arnobarno Replybullet Posted: 22 Nov 2010 at 2:40pm
I was one of the hard shelled kayakers out on Matheny Creek as part of a WKC trip this past weekend led by Jon Almquist (who did an awesome job as trip leader, I might add).

Matheny was great. Saturday was cold and clear, a little snow on the ground at the put in bushwhack (which was difficult). By the time we reached the water, I was fully drenched in sweat. It is a terrible slog through the woods with no defined trail - we put in on the main, above where the North Fork enters (near Lon 123.88900W, Lat 47.55633N based on the Topo Map). The bridge over the NF (described by AW) is now impassable by cars (but you can walk it). Apparently, boating the NF (as AW suggests) pretty much sucks, especially in the winter as you are kind of using your arms to push yourself along. Not so bad if it is 70 out and the water is 50. Sucks if the water is 35 and the air is too.

Now then, the Upper run is truly stunning and the real gem (amongst gems) section of Matheny Creek. We had a nice moderate flow (I'd call it medium low but Jon Almquist, our trip leader, said medium and the takeout rock looked like the preferred photo on AW). A couple of nice 6' ledges and lots of boogie water until you hit the crux 1/2 mile which has about 7 or 8 very nice 6-7 foot drops. A little like the Cooper but the drops are just a little smaller and easier. IMHO, I'd call it class IV definitely not IV+ (as AW states) at least at this level. A couple of the drops were manky and would have cleaned up a little with more water. Or been scary (for me) with a lot more water.

By the time we reached the rest of our group at the upper put-in for the Middle (including my wife, Deborah), everyone's hands were getting a bit cold. D couldn't feel her hands. And I couldn't open the buckle on my helmet when we stopped for food a little bit later.   It was a long day, especially with 13 people (only 5 did the Upper). The Middle section is II-III and very beautiful as well.

The second day, we did the lower part of the Middle (again) followed by the Lower. The Lower is a great run but the water level dropped some Saturday night and I'd call Sunday's level the high end of low. Nothing was really bony but felt more III+ (with maybe a couple of borderline IV- rapids). The two biggest rapids were pretty straightforward at Sunday's water level and the vertical log Brian described in Call 911 is pretty easily avoided in a hardshell kayak (BUT SHOULD BE SCOUTED). Beautiful scenery, BIG snowflakes and an even colder day. It was like a Winter Wonderland on the drive home. D didn't paddle on Sunday because she was unsure of the difficulty of the Lower and didn't want to brave the cold for such a short paddle on the Lower Middle only. As it turned out, she would have been fine at Sunday's water level on the Lower.

I'm anxious to go out there again - when it is warmer and with a bit more water. I think 8K would probably be a pretty good guess for the Queets to get a good medium flow everywhere. I know AW says 10K and maybe we just had more of the water in Matheny because of the height of the drainage and where the Queets water was actually coming from. Who knows? The "rock" gauge was pretty perfect on Saturday and the level on the Upper could have been a little higher but was pretty darn nice.

When I do Upper Matheny again, I'd leave boats at the road, then find the best path to the river, and then return for the boats. It would be good to mark a good route with flagging. Also, I'd take out mid-way through the Middle (there is flagging at this take-out and hopefully I can remember where that is on the road). It is a pretty easy trail (easier than carrying out at Paradise, which is easy for the OP). This would make about a 6 mile run instead of a 9 mile run. Then, if you want to do the Lower, you can either put in from that take-out or put-in at the real Middle take-out for a shorter run on the next day (and a trivial take-out for the Lower).

A super big thanks again to Jon Almquist for trip leading, and Bill Petty for his trail knowledge and maintenance! Deborah and I both enjoyed reconnecting with some folks we haven't paddled with in a while and getting to meet some others we haven't boated with before. Fun Times!
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