Taylor Robertson runs Kimshew Falls.
Chris, Taylor and Jesse below Kimshew Falls and above the bedrock
Grunwald in the bedrock
Below Kimshew Falls the next
quarter mile is unbelievable,
waterfall back to back until triple drop.
Pedro Oliva, "Chicken f-cker" slide above Triple Drop.
Triple Drop is well known
as the most commonly portaged rapid on Big
Kimshew Creek, and is a massive slide dropping over several tiers and
then into the wall, making a hard left turn and creating an inescapable
eddy on the right. Ben and Chris gave it a good scout before deciding
to run it.
This slide is steeper and longer than it looks. Ben Stookesberry makes
it look too easy.
From the top I could tell that Chris liked it, and I’m sure
Ben’s smooth line didn’t hurt.
Chris Korbulic giving ‘er one last look.
Chris Korbulic at the top of Triple Drop.
Not getting as far right in the entrance as Ben, Chris ended up in the
eddy on the right. Thankfully Devin had set safety before hand and was
there to help Chris out of the eddy.
Good safety, Devin Knight helping Chris Korbulic.
Looking back up and evaluating his line.
While the rest of the group
finished portaging Tripe Drop, we paddled
with speed down through several narrow sticky slot drop holes and a few
great slides that are between Triple Drop and Frenchys.
Jesse Coombs, typical Big Kimshew read and run.
Devin Knight enjoying some scenery…
The lead in to
Frenchy’s 40 is every bit as large as the
drop, and although only a class IV move, it’s right at the
a tricky forty footer, making it a common portage.
We all portaged around the lead in, and a few of
to run the
waterfall while most portaged. Frenchy’s 40 is a tricky drop,
wall is only ten to fifteen feet from the landing, and while
temping to go left, doing so involves a auto boof flake into green
water, a hit taken yesterday that Ben described as one of his
Jonas Grunwald charges over Frency's Forty.
Taylor Robertson leading the
charge over Frenchys.
Devin Knight hitting the ideal line on the forty footer.
Watching Taylor, Devin and
Jesse style Frenchys, I decided I was
motivated and seal launched in from river left, ferried across and
locked in. Following Devin’s advice, I left the eddy high up
came down just left of center, pulling up my right knee about halfway
down the drop, plugged in deep to the soft pillow and resurfaced
upright with a huge grin.
Moore enjoying some nice Big
Even though the waterfall seems like the end of
significant drops lie below it, including one portage around a very
sticky hole that has been run. The scenery on Big Kimshew Creek is
amazingly diverse, from pure California scoured granite to West
Virginia dense forest overhanging the river, it seemed to have it all.
Eventually we came around a corner and eddied out with our takeout
bridge in site, a site for sore eyes and muscles. The last drop on
Kimshew is as classic as the rest of the run, a nice fifteen to twenty
foot falls, boofed melting into a fold.
Devin Knight finishing up a great day on Big Kimshew
Chris Gabrielli, afternoon light & delight.
On the whole Big Kimshew is
a classic for class V boaters, but expect
to walk away tired and quite possibly sore from taking a few hits, we
had three swims, two broken paddles and one broken boat with ten people
on the water. Shuttle logistics are tough to explain. Take out: Get on
the Skyway in Paradise headed East. Near the edge of town, at a
stoplight, make a right turn on Coutolenc Road. Follow Coutolenc Road
for .5 miles until an unsigned right turn onto Jordan Hill Road (dirt).
There is a "Road not County Maintained" sign. Follow the rough dirt
road downhill until you see Whiskey Flat Bridge. Park where
appropriate. From Whiskey flat bridge backtrack to Skyline and make a
right hand turn. Proceed ~10 miles to Sterling City and make a right on
Reston Road (unsigned) towards Menlo Park (signed). Pass Menlo Park and
stay to the left when the road forks. Continue on Reston Road but stay
right on "R Line" when Reston Road turns to the left. Follow
Line for several miles until you see a sign
for “200R”. Make a right turn on 200R and
until the obvious overlook. Park in the next wide area to put in at the
Island Portage, or continue up to where the road meets the river.
The flow window is short, and it generally flows during
the peak of snow melt in May. In most years look for the flow
to be 500-700.
Things change: As of 2012 there are two gates on the road to put-in, as
well as one on the road to the West Branch Feather and Big
Kimshew Creek confluence. Thas means no access until the situation
Marnics finishes a beauty on the Secret Stash.