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Let's get things back in gear in 2021. Its been quite a while. Hope everyone has gotten shots taken care of and is ready to go again. Let's revive this old chestnut from our bag of river running sections as a way to ease back into our boats.
River is flowing now at 156 cfs, so maybe we will still have floatable water when this trip goes off. This will be a paddle from the State Park to Specht's Crossing, about 5 to 6 miles. We may use Guadalupe River RV Park and Campground as a takeout, on the SE corner of the River and the Specht's Crossing bridge on Spring Branch Road. Take out will be on river right just past the bridge. Everyone will pay their own way to enter the State and RV park and leave vehicles. We'll work this as a self shuttle. I admit I have not checked yet on the State Park and the RV park operations post-shutdown, but will and post any changes and charges here. We'll put in at the park, drop boats, convoy the vehicles to the take out, and will need one or two to bring drivers back to the put-in. Please be willing to volunteer for this.
At the park we'll meet down by the canoe launch area, there is a turnaround there where we can unload boats. The shuttle to Specht's is quite lengthy so it may take us at least an hour to go there and back.
We'll take names and head count, and then put in. Release forms will be required. The river will have running sections, but is a typical pool and drop river, so there will be lengthy sections with slow water, always accumulating in swifter rapids at the end. There are a few points with some tight channels around cypress trees. Get out of the boat and walk it around something if you are uncomfortable. If you flip in a rapid, orient yourself to float down feet first, better to bump your butt than your head!
The major portage is around a private concrete road / dam that was put in the river some years back (the "Guad Dam" as it has been nicknamed). It has a small channel cut across the top, which is tricky because boats can hang up and flip at certain water levels. Also has culverts underneath which must be avoided. THEREFORE GETTING OUT ON RIVER RIGHT AND PORTAGING THIS OBSTACLE IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, AND REQUIRED FOR ANYONE WITHOUT EXPERIENCE IN RUNNING IT. It is a short drag around it. The first boat to this obstacle should wait up on the bank and guide people to the portage point as they come in.
We'll find some spots to stop and swim and cool off - and imbibe cooling refreshments. Floating thru rapids with PFD's on can be fun where it is safe too.
At the end of the trip we will have to take the shuttle drivers back to their cars at the State Park - so will need some volunteers for that. If we can take their boats doubled up too, that will certainly help, so that is why we want to keep them at a minimum.
REQUIREMENTS AND NOTICES
You must be a confident swimmer. Rivers contain hazards that can result in injury or worse. Have demonstrated ability to control your boat in swift or whitewater, experience recommended. Know your ability. You are solely responsible for your own safety on and off the water. Safely traveling to and from the event and on shuttles is solely your own responsibility. The club is not responsible for any theft or damage to vehicles at put-ins or take outs.
ITEMS TO BRING ON THE TRIP/RIVER:
PFDs - Class 3 - required to be in every boat to be on the float - one per person. Wear at any time approaching swift water. All children 13 and under must wear a PFD AT ALL TIMES.
Water - It will be hot. Adult or other beverages in a cooler. NO GLASS ITEMS EVER!! Snacks as we will be stopping on the river to swim and cool off. Sunblock, hat, sunglasses on retainers. Have a personal first aid pack.
At least one "painter" on your boat (that's a rope tied to your bow, usually), so you can tie up your boat to the shore if needed.
Ankle strap sandals are best as stones and mud will easily fall out. No flip flops and un-strapped sandals; they are a bad idea as they easily fall off. No bare feet.
That's it. Look forward to it.
So stay tuned here as we get closer to the float date, and also check on the Meetup Site the evening before for the latest news.