Sun Sep 24, 2017 01:21 PDT

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String Cheese Incident
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Kayak trip down Bear Valley Creek to Middle Fork of the Salmon

July 16-17, 2000 with Kira, Gregg Lewis, Steve Townsley.

Middle Fork (Salmon) gauge read 2.0 feet. This is not enough water to run the Bear Valley to Dagger Falls stretch of river, especially in an inflatable kayak. Kira and I had to work hard to push ourselves off of the many rocks we would get stuck on. Other than that it was a good trip. Stopped at the hot springs and to fish for a bit. I caught a beautiful 14 inch rainbow on a daredevil.

The put in for this trip is at Fir Creek campground near Bruce Meadow. After about 6 miles Marsh Creek comes in from the right and this is the actual start of the famous Middle Fork of the Salmon River. Then it's about 8 miles down to Dagger Falls and the take-out. Class III- water. Kira and I portaged one rapid about 2 miles from the end.

We picked this weekend because it was supposed to be the peak weekend for salmon viewing at Dagger Falls. 2000 was supposed to be a great year for returning chinook but in 1/2 hour of watching I saw none. Last year, which wasn't supposed to be as good, I saw about 1 every two minutes. It's an amazing sight watching these 30 pound fish launch themselves up the falls.

The next day we floated the Swirly Canyon section of the South Fork of the Payette. This was a lot of fun. Kira swam alongside the boats for a small stretch and got spooked by the underwater rocks and canyons.


Gregg having fun

Gregg working hard...


Kira and Adrian

Taking a break on the river.


Hot springs

There are some great hot springs on this stretch, about 1 mile upstream from where Marsh Creek flows in.


The Synchro Vanagon

Loading up the gear at the end of the float.


Adrian at Dagger Falls

Adrian with Dagger Falls in the back.


Kira at Dagger Falls.

Kira with Dagger Falls in the back.


Nice shoes

Kira's pretty yellow river shoes.