? JAWBONE RAPID, SECT IV CHATTOOGA

Decked Canoes, Open Canoes, as long as they're canoes!

Moderators: adamin, kenneth, sbroam, TheKrikkitWars, Mike W., Sir Adam, KNeal, PAC

old school
c
Posts: 18
Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 11:07 am
Location: Chattanooga, Tn

? JAWBONE RAPID, SECT IV CHATTOOGA

Post by old school » Tue Aug 09, 2011 3:18 am

re Wondering if you are familiar with this rapid and if anything has changed there since I did it 30yr ago.

When I was paddling circa 1980, there was a strainer under the House Size rock, river right, in the middle of Jawbone Rapid, Sec IV Chattooga.

A guy who paddled catch boat K1 for a raft company(a pro) got caught there(under/inside the rock) and drown.

"Word was" - his paddle, jacket, helmet, etc got stripped off and came out but he did not.

The description/report said there was a hole under/through that rock and a tree was stuck in it with limbs pointing up river.
From reports published in club newsletters.

One month later, I was there and the same thing happened to me, same place, same way - upside down and backwards(you get caught in the whirl pool above that feeds down into the hole). I was in my Slipper, paddle and face on deck in a tight tuck roll position, upsidedown and backwards and got sucked down, under and through..

I knew(had read) what had happened to him, so I knew I was dead also, my life flashed before me.

But with dumb luck, the strainer was not there.
I went down(about 8'?) and through, drifted to the surface and rolled, white a sheet(they said).

Are you familiar with that spot?

Is this place and that potential known to the current community?

Is there indeed a hole under that rock or is it just a big under water ledge?

Just curious about what that really looks like and if anything has been done there.
Be kind, everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle.

User avatar
sbroam
CBoats.net Staff
Posts: 3967
Joined: Thu Nov 07, 2002 2:12 am
Location: Lexington, SC
Contact:

Post by sbroam » Tue Aug 09, 2011 10:06 am

On a trip (ill advised at the time) in 93 or 94 we had a member of our party eddy above Hydroelectric rock, flip, and swim through. He lived as did you. We learned 3 things -

1. God wasn't ready for Ed yet.
2. Never eddy above Hydro
3. Don't listen to or go on another trip with Mike * last name redacted *

I've been back as recently as New Years and the rapid Jawbone is about the same - the rule remains identical - don't eddy above Hydro!
Last edited by sbroam on Thu Aug 11, 2011 11:23 am, edited 2 times in total.

old school
c
Posts: 18
Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 11:07 am
Location: Chattanooga, Tn

Post by old school » Tue Aug 09, 2011 10:34 am

Maybe we should start a "DONT GO THERE" OR "KILL ZONE" OR "DANGER ZONE" page on this site.

I know of at least 2 more such places on Sec IV where paddlers have died due to "death traps" ie not medical issues or poor outfitting, etc

- Left Crack at Crack in The Rock
- The manholes above Bull Sluice

Add
- Gauley
- Suck Creek
Others

And all that was 30 yr ago.
Be kind, everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle.

ELGOTTO
C Guru
Posts: 227
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 11:30 am

Post by ELGOTTO » Tue Aug 09, 2011 11:00 am

I could be wrong but the rock that caught that kayaker was not hydroelectric but a overhanging rock on river right upstream of hydroelectric right below the top eddy on Jawbone. But for sure stay away from hydro. The hole thru the rock usually has wood in it. Sometimes you can see it sticking above the waterline and sometimes you can't.

User avatar
philcanoe
C Maven
Posts: 1549
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2004 1:15 am
Location: top o'da boat - Reids, AL

Post by philcanoe » Tue Aug 09, 2011 12:27 pm

old school wrote:Maybe we should start a "DONT GO THERE" OR "KILL ZONE" OR "DANGER ZONE" page on this site..
We all know the inherit risks to this sport, and a never ending list of world wide dangers :o would soon exhaust any reasonable need to read. Concerning this situation, if someone cannot see the rather obvious danger(s), then maybe they ought not to be there. People that are so dependent upon others, all too often get themselves into trouble in the process. Having also cut a few teeth on the Chattooga, I never blindly charged into anywhere... not because of those many boat-loads of stories, but rather because of having learned there can be bad places anywhere. This is simply another river that should be respected, in the list that should include all.

A page could be filled with what's within two hours of my house, and then a new rock or tree would make that list for naught. There is no excuse for not having, or possessing adequate water reading skills, unless learning. There is nothing really particular to this case, for if you cannot see water running headlong into a rock and disappearing, then it's very likely you don't need to be there in the first place. As said unless someone's just cutting their own teeth, and then someone with knowledge will be pointing it out for their education. For without geologic knowledge of the river system you're paddling, then you best be better than real good... because these ancient hills are full of rocks with holes and undercuts. And other rivers are full of razor sharp quartzite, and others with river wide slick high water ledge holes or vertical walls, and so on...

Not to make light of a bad place, but there's another just below it, and another just above, and several others along the way.
    ^~^~^ different strokes ~ for different folks ^~^~^

    User avatar
    markzak
    CBoats Addict
    Posts: 490
    Joined: Thu Jul 31, 2008 6:15 pm
    Location: Albrightsville, PA
    Contact:

    Post by markzak » Tue Aug 09, 2011 2:12 pm

    Is this the rock in the middle of jawbone on river right that is bad news? (the one on river right next to the paddler):
    Image

    xmas0c1c1k1
    CBoats Addict
    Posts: 413
    Joined: Mon Oct 09, 2006 4:40 pm
    Location: Atlanta

    Post by xmas0c1c1k1 » Tue Aug 09, 2011 2:26 pm

    There are two rocks to look out for first is the one in that picture called decapitation rock is where the kayaker died. From what I have heard and seen his death was likely alot due to his glass boat folding I've seen quit a few people/boats wash through ther it is just an ugly undercut. Hydroelectric rock is the really bad rock because it has a hole through it which regularly has wood shoved in it. Both are pretty easily avoidable it is all part of the game easily walked rapid if need be

    ELGOTTO
    C Guru
    Posts: 227
    Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 11:30 am

    Post by ELGOTTO » Tue Aug 09, 2011 2:27 pm

    That is the rock that I believe the infamous drowning took place and that isn't hydroelectric rock.

    User avatar
    eddyhops
    CBoats Addict
    Posts: 315
    Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2003 3:39 pm
    Location: Alabama

    Post by eddyhops » Tue Aug 09, 2011 3:16 pm

    markzak wrote:Is this the rock in the middle of jawbone on river right that is bad news? (the one on river right next to the paddler):
    Image
    Believe so.

    xmas0c1c1k1 wrote:There are two rocks to look out for first is the one in that picture called decapitation rock is where the kayaker died.
    I thought 'decap rock' is in Bull Sluice, and heard this rock is called 'Guillotine' and is just below what is called the 'Death Eddy' just upstream on river right. Just what I've heard.
    JD

    User avatar
    markzak
    CBoats Addict
    Posts: 490
    Joined: Thu Jul 31, 2008 6:15 pm
    Location: Albrightsville, PA
    Contact:

    Post by markzak » Tue Aug 09, 2011 3:38 pm

    more pics here, if the other dangers that people want to identify are pictured anywhere: https://picasaweb.google.com/1086195204 ... ectIV72209
    Please share.

    User avatar
    Todhunter
    Ridge Spirit Outfitting
    Posts: 768
    Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2009 11:42 am
    Location: Chattanooga, TN

    Post by Todhunter » Tue Aug 09, 2011 4:15 pm

    markzak wrote:more pics here, if the other dangers that people want to identify are pictured anywhere: https://picasaweb.google.com/1086195204 ... ectIV72209
    Please share.
    Photos 69 and 74 have Hydroelectric Rock in the top center of the photo.
    Matt Todhunter
    Ridge Spirit Outfitting - Custom Bulkhead Canoe Saddles

    pblanc
    CBoats Addict
    Posts: 534
    Joined: Mon Jul 23, 2007 12:55 pm

    Post by pblanc » Tue Aug 09, 2011 4:34 pm

    I believe the incident in question did occur at the rock ELGOTTO has identified and involved the death of Charles Bernard back in Oct 1979. The rock above the undercut rock to the river right side of the main flow right after the initial drop at Jawbone has a pretty nice eddy behind it that safety boaters for rafting companies used to catch routinely to set safety.

    Bernard was a river guide who caught the eddy (now known to some as "Bernard's Eddy") and leaked out of it backwards into the undercut. His boat was ripped in half and his helmet and PFD were stripped off but his body remained trapped for 5 hours.

    xmas0c1c1k1
    CBoats Addict
    Posts: 413
    Joined: Mon Oct 09, 2006 4:40 pm
    Location: Atlanta

    Post by xmas0c1c1k1 » Wed Aug 10, 2011 1:59 am

    so yeah the one in the picture is the one that killed the guide he caught the eddy ABOVE this rock now called death eddy among other things I've always heard the rock referred to as decap rock the same as the name at bull sluice but either way it is the same message big overhanging rock that will take your head off. The stories I have heard is that the safety boaters boat folded and pinned under the rock so his body was stuck in the pinned boat.

    User avatar
    philcanoe
    C Maven
    Posts: 1549
    Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2004 1:15 am
    Location: top o'da boat - Reids, AL

    Post by philcanoe » Wed Aug 10, 2011 2:12 am

    The eddy below these two guys, is the one in mention, and routinely caught...

    Image
    from:https://picasaweb.google.com/1086195204 ... ectIV72209

    .... just do not drop out !

    Hydroelectric is downstream behind this larger rock, with a nice eddy above it at this level. With more water it is more in play, and the whole (5falls) section takes on a different flavor.
      ^~^~^ different strokes ~ for different folks ^~^~^

      old school
      c
      Posts: 18
      Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 11:07 am
      Location: Chattanooga, Tn

      Post by old school » Wed Aug 10, 2011 4:32 am

      philcanoe - what water level is your pic at? an estimate will do
      Be kind, everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle.

      Post Reply