Goat Creekin' Idaho Style Edit

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      Made our way up to Idaho a few days ago.  Spent a few days in the Payette river network and ran the South Fork Canyon section, as well as the South Fork Staircase run.

      While I had run the Staircase section last year, with ID only having roughly 6% of snow-pack in comparison to last year, it was far more tame.  ( we ran it at 6,500 cfs last year at this time;  caught it at just under 3,000 cfs this year…)

      I had not, however, run the Canyon section upstream.  It proved to be immaculate whitewater nestled into a tight canyon with the sense of no escape.

      While the SC Canyon and Staircase run were great, it was the NF Payette that brought us back to ID;  Much to our dismay, the reservoir upstream of the North Fork Payette hadn’t filled, thus the flows were not up to par with the usual summer releases.

      We then headed up towards the East Fork South Fork of the Salmon, located in central Idaho.  On our way, we stumbled across a wilderness like run tucked away in a a remote canyon along the way to the EFSF.

      With virtually one car passing by a day, we dropped our boats at the put in, and drove back down the canyon 7 miles to where we would take out at our campsite.  We were prepared to make the daunting 7 mile shuttle run / hike back up the grueling mountain gradients to see what the Goat was all about!

      As good paddling chi chi would have it, after roughly 10 minutes of walking, a passerby swooped us up and made our day!   Having knocked off a 7 mile foot shuttle, we were pumped to put on!

      The first bit of the run was very stressful, with many river wide strainers, 60 foot high river wide log jams, etc.   On top of this, we were alerted that a major, most definitely worth scouting class V drop lurked somewhere on the run.  As we were told, ” it’ll be just around a corner where wood tends to pile up…then make sure to catch en eddy immediately!”…

      Seeing as every corner had enormous amounts of wood jammed, it was cautious going until we finally came across the big boy; Double Drop.

      After giving the two tiered drop a peak and making sure no wood awaited at the bottoms of the drops, my brother Terry opted to walk it and set safety above a trashy hole at the bottom of the second drop.

      Once through the crux of the run, we proceeded downstream where the fun snowballed until we couldn’t hard;y handle it!   Beautiful canyons and miles of good splashy fun came for miles!   As if that wasn’t good enough, the wood situation improved dramatically.

      All in all, the run took a bit over 4 hours, and dropped us back at our car in time for a good night of campin!

      Chris W

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