Monday, May 10, 2010

Insert Cliche Here ............

Alright kids, here we go...
We've been in California for five days now and its been pretty eventful so far. After the mandatory savage flight to LA, we were met by Paige and her mum in their car (I'm using the term loosely here - it was an F250 with duals on the back) for the 8 hour drive up to Auburn which is our base for the next three months.
That evening we were acquainted? with our sweet new pad - The trouse (or trouser) is like an old trailer which has kind of been added to to make a weird semi permanent dwelling, the water doesn't work so we have a hose in the window for dishes/cups of tea etc but we do have electricity so it's kind of like living in a tent with walls and power..

The sweet spew bag on the V-Australia flight. Obviously fully sick is now our new catch phrase.

Casual unnecessarily large ute. Note the extra wide fenders to accommodate extra unnecessary set of wheels.

Part of team dirtbag out the front of the trouse.

Anyway it basically goes without saying that our first night in the trouse turned into a bender, lots of choice dudes turned up to celebrate some random mexican holiday and we all know the best liquid to come from mexico...
One of said dudes was Justin Patt - Auburn local and paddler. Amidst much festivity a plan was hatched to do the 49 to bridgeport run on the South Yuba river.
The next day arrived at about 2pm and we rallied to do our first river in Cali - pretty good for our first day!! The run was a sweet grade 4-5 mission down a sick pool drop river with so many sick moves - just what the doctor ordered.
Friday was an organisation day. Mum - our trusty minivan, has a terrible shudder which renders her marginal for long missions on freeways so we're trying to sort that out and get her operational again.
The highlight so far though has been our Saturday mission though. The boys here are all fired up about the season because there is a heap of snow which hasn't even started melting yet. This means there will be heaps of sick runs coming in in the next few weeks.
One of these runs is one of the most iconic and photogenic of them all.. The south branch of the middle fork of the Feather river (yes I know its a mouthful but apparantly naming tributaries is not the go over here..) This thing is the business - everyone has seen the photos of endless ledge drops capped off with a perfect rolling 50 footer and it didn't disappoint. We rallied up there with Justin and Taylor Cavin and met a couple of others on the way. Here are some photos of the day.Me on the first 20 of the day - split falls

Taylor stomping all hell out of the same

The Tony Hawk drop - sickness

Justin flying off Tony Hawk

Jared doing the same

Taylor launching on high pressure 20 - this drop is named because it's right above 99 problems - a 40 footer which lands on a shelf and you have to make an eddy right above it..

China slide - because it takes you to China!! This slide was right above a huge portage and most of us didn't run it, we had to portage down and then do a super scary ferry across the top of a 100 foot death drop - going upside down was not an option.

Apparently we were in there at quite a high flow (like no one in our crew had been in there that high - ish awkward?) which made all the waterfalls nice and soft but brought in some sketchy moves like the China ferry which aren't usually there.

Jared running the last move of the day...

The take out is at the top of another huge set of unrun beasts (80 feet +)

The south branch is a sick run and pretty much the dream intro to California we were hoping for, some cool rapids, so many amazing drops and a nice big girl at the end to get the heart pumping!
Now we've got to fix our car and hopefully catch up with the rest of the kiwi crew here. We're off to do our new local run - 49 to bridgeport so we'll get some photos to throw up soon. Churrrrr

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