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Pumpin the China

Cle Elum
Class: IV-V      GMap
1 - China Gorge (Scatter Creek to Salmon La Sac Creek)
Trip Date: 5/27/2007
Written on: 5/29/2007
Written by:

This memorial day weekend was a wild one for sure.

Lydia and I started off by making our way out to the Icicle and Wenatchee but with Sub Par flows and good beta on the Cle Elum we decided to make our way to another drainage. Together the Harms Crew, Hoover, D1 and I rallied Blewitt Pass and formed up at D1's Big Bro's (Dan) House. With wonderful local knowledge we were guided to a sweet campsite down the road where we rocked some tunes and then crashed out.

Sunday Morning we woke up to see that the Cooper was absolutely Pumping and unlike our past trips down China Gorge it was off the juice meter too. After everyone opted out of the Cooper we drove up too Triple drop to catch a few views. It was thumping. Quickly the group started un-ravelin but with a bit of expert leadership D1 regained momentum and convinced us all to put in below triple drop and do the run. He agrees to put in below Triple drop and then the next thing we know he is doing this secret mountain goat put-in to run the last ledge in triple drop starting at almost the lip. Sucker!!! So he snagged an extra ledge... We will live... But I am still green with envy and a little bummed my pair wasn't that big.

Together D1, Hoover and I continued down with Harms Running Canyon Safety overhead. We lost contact with Harms Right away. And the next thing we know were cruising down some fast and fun class IV.

After the first few boulder gardens and a nice hole ride for each person in the group, we came to a little ledge. It was a fun tongue but it had a hidden hole behind it waitn for D1. Although Hoover more or less styled it, he had to give it a good paddle to get out.

From that ledge things started to pick up a bit until we arrived at S-Turn. D1 of course did a little late eddy and got stuck in the middle of the river. Luckily Hoover and I set up a little eddy catch and pulled Dave to the banks before he ran S-Turn Backwards.

The first move was pretty burly and it seemed good to go although scary. The second ledge was the real question. We could see the normal hole and hydraulic but there was new wood in the exit of the canyon and although the wood report was clean no one even mentioned wood in s-turn.

Just about the moment that we were trying to find a way to scout the wood we saw Harms up on the canyon rim sending down signals of dispare to the group below. In a Tree Hugging Fashion (No he was really hugging this tree right at the lip of the canyon it was wild) he motioned that there was a big one down across the exit. After a long winded and long distance kayak sign language conversation we decided that we should heed the advise and portage the Turn.

After a wickedly long and steep hike we broke the canyon's rim and made it back down to the river. D1 of course did the super te

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