Leaving one vehicle at the Tiger Creek powerhouse we zipped up the dirt
road to Panther Creek, stopping to look at flows before reaching put in.
Nocetti and Scott Ligare
thing was quickly apparent about
Panther Creek, it wasn't low. If
only there was a pool at the bottom....
Unfortunately Panther Creek was way too high, and driving
back down we
debated on our options, the more well known Tiger Creek run of the
Mokelumne, or if it was high enough, checking out Tiger Creek into the
Mokelumne. Exploration's draw couldn't be ignored, and soon enough we
slid into out boats into the still paltry flow of Tiger Creek.
We all expected to be making quite a few portages
but we certainly didn't expect to be portaging over old motorcycles in
this deep canyon! In correlation with it's namesake, the creek crept
down the mountainside, before pouncing on us with a powerful package of
this won't be so bad after all,
we thought as Scott Ligare ran
the first bedrock drop.
The gradient certainly was steep, the canyon deep
while wood was
present, we made quick work of a portage or two and reaped the benefits
with more bedrock drops, in a very Oregonian setting.
Nocetti in the verdant Tiger
We all exchanged comments about the surprising
that if not exactly smooth California granite, was at least bedrock.
Pushing through more rapids, the gradient continued to pick up as the
river rounded a corner.
Ligare enjoys a better drop on
Coming around the bend, we saw the eye of the
started down a steep series of bedrock drops, tragically dropping into
a pile of boulders at the bottom. The whole cascade series dropped
about seventy feet from top to bottom, but we couldn't see a
way to pick off any drop in particular and started a long portage up
and down the steep, slippery right bank.
The portage took us about twenty to thirty
ended in a
large obnoxious blackberry patch, where we were able to put on to some
steep, very Nor-Cal styled mank, similar to the notorious Bridge
, minus the clean
waterfalls and slides. Many more wood portages abounded, light seemed
to be fading deep in the canyon, and we accordingly picked up the pace
when the river allowed.
was still a clean drop or two in
the lower section, Jared Nocetti.
The last mile of Tiger Creek was one long boulder
obligatory bit of log ducking here and there. The little creek fed
right into a low bridge at Tiger Creek powerhouse, and we were forced
to exit through the most accessible route we could find through the
proliferate blackberry patches.
The best thing about Tiger Creek? Exploring
worthwhile, and we kept up good morale the whole way down, but were
more than happy to take out. We enjoyed the adventure of the day, but I
would not recommend Tiger Creek.
in case you didn't know where to