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Ingalls Peshastin with John and Dave

Peshastin Creek
Class: III+ (IV)      GMap
Highway 97 culvert to Wenatchee River
Trip Date: 6/5/2011
Written on: 6/5/2011
Written by:

About a year after I started boating, I went over to run Peshastin. This was in Spring 2007. Anyway, arrived and scouted Fresh Squeezed and there was a tree in it with lots of fresh branches reaching out to try to get ya (here is a pic from a couple of weeks after we were there when the wood didn't look as bad, really, http://www.professorpaddle.com/media/photoview.asp?File_Id=1588 but still bad). At the time, it would have been an at ability level run. Anyway, looked at the wood, and said to myself, "Self, Could I screw up that move?" Answer: You Bet!! So, I put in below Fresh Squeezed and ran down with others that were either more skilled or foolish or both who had put in higher.

Going back now 4 years later, it was an interesting experience as there was a bit of a boogie man there for me.

We put in on Ingalls on Saturday and Sunday about 100 yards down from the bridge. There are two spots on Ingalls with wood at the levels we ran it. One spot is about 95 yards down from the bridge (thus why we put in where we did). There is a piece of wood coming out from river right at river level blocking about 15% of the "line" you want to run; in what looked like the biggest ledge (3.5 feet maybe). Assuming I hadn't screwed up above it, I think I could make the move 9 times out of 10 or more but that isn't good enough for me, especially if there is a trivial way to avoid the hazard. The other piece of wood is wedged on the top of the island just upstream of the confluence with Peshastin Creek proper. That wood would be more of a hazard to a swimmer as a good deal of the current is piling into the wood. If you are in your boat and upright, it is a reasonably straightforward move.

Peshastin Creek itself was almost completely clean of wood. There was one significant piece of wood in an easy to see spot blocking the right half of the river. It is a pretty easy to see spot, but unfortunately, hard to remember spot. Maybe someone else who was with me will remember and could post a bit more detail.

The level on the DOE Peshastin gauge was 590 cfs on Saturday and 700 cfs on Sunday. I thought both levels were super fun and reasonably friendly. The description of Peshastin Creek on PP seems to be somewhat at odds with Bennett and AW. AW says the best levels are 500-750 cfs. PP seems to imply that 700 cfs is really cranking. It certainly didn't feel that way to me - it was a fun level with only a small portion of the river (the section below FS) - noticeably harder than the day before. Ingalls, on the other hand, did feel like true class IV with more water.

To me, if I had to give a rating to the river(s) at these levels:
Day 1: 590 cfs
Ingalls: class IV-
Peshastin above FS: III-III+
Fresh Squeezed: IV-
Next half mile: III+
Below: II-III

Day 2: 700 cfs
Ingalls: class IV
Peshastin above FS: III-III+
Fresh Squeezed: IV-/IV
Next half mile: III+/IV-
Below: II-III

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