Paddling adventures big and small in the Rocky Mountains of the US.
Saturday, August 29, 2015
Smoky but wonderful night on the Missouri River below Canyon Ferry Dam. Our usual paddling crew showed up for a nice night of relaxing paddling. As you can see in this photo of Jim, the water was pretty much like glass.
We saw lots of wildlife including bald eagle, osprey and several deer.
Man was I excited when I got a call for good paddling buddy Jim Holland Saturday night asking what I was doing on Sunday. I paused for a moment, thoughts of Church service I was intending to attend with my wife Dawn and then said" Nothing. What do you have in mind?" He said he and Paul Otto were thinking why not drive an hour and a half up to Henry Morgan FAS and paddle to Russell Gates I was all in!
The day was spectacular with bright blue sky and ice cold, fast moving water to float. Water levels were a bit north of 1,000 CFS near Ovando and it was a fun, fast paddle.
We used the great shuttle service at Ovando (I think it is called Ovando Shuttle...) and were on the water by 11:08 and had a 4 hour trip ahead. Lots of Merganser duck pairs paddling along with us as well as a little lost gosling at the take out at Russell Gates. The little fellow had taken a shine to this rafter and she was doing her best to get the little fuzz ball back in the water to hopefully find Mom.
We had a bit of trouble finding a good spot to pull over for lunch as the water was so high that the normal spots had no eddy to speak of a steep drop offs. Jim finally found this nice grassy beach and even provided a easy seal launch back into the Blackfoot after a snack!
Here is a little video to get a better idea what a day on the Blackfoot is like.
On the way back we stopped to admire this 1972 Bell 13' trailer for sale in Avon. Jim was sorely tempted to take on a project and Paul has been looking a small trailers but I think he wants a little less of a fix up project.
Great outing on the Helena Valley Reservoir last Tuesday. Gregg, Paul, Dawn & Scott, Greg & Wendy and Susan Paddled for about 1 1/2 hours on glass like waters and enjoyed seeing pelicans, ducks, geese, herons and swans. Great time of year for a start of our weekly paddling.
Full disclosure this was not paddling but my good friend Andy just bought this cute 12' aluminum fishing boat with a little putt-putt motor that we took for her maiden voyage down the Missouri from York Bridge to the Hauser Dam.
This bridge is fancy but not as fun and the old steel bridge that it replaced! I used to have fun as a teen jumping from the tall old bridge but decades of water flowing around it had weakened it and the gov't had to replace it.
It was a beautifully calm, tranquil day up canyon.
We had a blast and even if the motor was a bit loud, we were the only ones around to hear it.