Sacramento region

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Pea Pod
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Sacramento region

Post by Pea Pod » Mon Jun 08, 2015 10:57 pm

Are there good Grade 3-ish rivers near or west of Sacramento? Any open-boat clubs or suppliers? I might be heading there in the next 6 months.

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Re: Sacramento region

Post by Sir Adam » Mon Jun 08, 2015 11:07 pm

I would hazard to guess you'd have better luck to the east unless there is something interesting int he Jackson State Forest;)
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Re: Sacramento region

Post by Eli » Tue Jun 09, 2015 2:00 am

The American is worth a look. I'm not sure what the release schedule is like during the draught.
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Re: Sacramento region

Post by johnd » Tue Jun 09, 2015 2:56 am

My experience is, if you want to be the "unwanted stepchild", be sure and bring your canoe to Sacramento. Otherwise, bring a kayak.

I have lived mostly in the Sacramento area since 2000, and I would say that it is a terrible place to be a canoeist, in terms of the unfriendliness of kayakers, the lack of planned trips in any of the Sacramento-based kayaking clubs, as well as the unfriendliness of some people in the Sacramento-based clubs to canoeists. Compared to organized clubs like the Keelhaulers, in Cleveland, or the Carolina Canoe Club, the Sacramento-based clubs are definitely outclassed. I have driven over 200 miles to attend a club trip and have nobody want to boat with me on a Class II-III run, Pigeon Point on the Trinity, even though I have boated Class IV. It's like you needed a secret handshake or something to find a group to join. Last month, I went to a Class II release run and saw some kayakers I had boated with on other occasions, gearing up for a private trip on the run, and no one asked if I had a trip or if I wanted to join theirs, or said hello, or even acknowledged my existence. My current theory is that it is either an overpopulation thing where people don't want more people around them, or else there are a lot of trendy people in California, who glom on to trendy activities like kayaking, and canoeing isn't trendy, so they don't like canoeists. They don't understand. It's like, "How come he's not paddling the trendy boat? Doesn't he get it?"

As far as open boat clubs around here, they're not really Class III type clubs.

In terms of Class III, Colorado and the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic are far superior. There are a few Class III rivers, but the whitewater tends to be mostly Class II or Class 4-5. I'm talking about the Sacramento area. There are a few more Class III runs up north in the "State of Jefferson." It's definitely not a mecca here for Class III or Class III-IV boating. The South Fork of the American is releasing on weekends if you like dodging rafts.

California is also experiencing a terrible drought which has cut back on many possible runs for boating.

Hope this rant was helpful. Send me a p-mail if you're in the area. Good luck!

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Re: Sacramento region

Post by elunopaddle » Tue Jun 09, 2015 5:14 am

If you're coming to the Sacramento area, forget west of town, there's not gonna be anything running. Head to both the South Fork of the American for 2 day trips. The first is on the SFA Gorge, class 3. Lots of fun, great run, rafts? Whatever, they the raft passengers are the ones that flag you down to cheer uou on. they are great obstacles, too. California just doesn't get OC, it isnt the SE, at alllll. That being said, the few boaters I've met have been really cool. The section upstream is the Chili Bar run. I haven't done it, but I think it's a hair more pushy, class 3, a few 4? I'm in Red Bluff, stay in contact on the board, I've met a handful of OC-1 and c boaters that love a good class 3 trip. Check CACteeks.com, there is a rec release for SFA, as well as some others. It's gonna have to be a dam release.
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Re: Sacramento region

Post by Pea Pod » Tue Jun 09, 2015 7:02 am

Thanks for that information. Doesn't sound great, but not impossible. My friend lives in Rumsey, CA at the moment (https://www.google.com.au/maps/place/Ru ... 22.2374749), about an hour west of Sacramento.

I'm trying to work out if it's worth bringing some boating gear if I visit for a while. Still hypothetical at this stage.

What's in Jackson State Forest?

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Re: Sacramento region

Post by Pea Pod » Tue Jun 09, 2015 7:25 am

Sad to hear that CA is anti-OC. I’m happy to convert a kayak into a C1, but I’m unlikely to paddle one as is.

It looks like there’s some rafting on the Cache River, close to my friend’s house. According to one of the rafting companies, there are TWO class 3 rapids in the Cache River Gorge. Better than nothing. That could make a good place to keep up my skills.

So it looks like I will have to travel further afield for serious trips. I had to google the State of Jefferson. It’s within a day’s drive of Rumsey, CA, so that’s OK.

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Re: Sacramento region

Post by Larry Horne » Wed Jun 10, 2015 6:55 am

Jeez Jon, what a downer. I just don't see what you see.
I paddled oc here for seven years, learning from absolute scratch, knowing no-one. I just drove to the rivers with my gear and begged my way on. I met all kinds of cool people to boat with. Never had any problems. Got encouragement all the way from (gasp!) kayakers.
I paddle c1 now but that choice was not based on anything social.
Last time I boated with my buddy who was in his oc, kayakers were making very friendly comments.
No, there aren't many canoeists here, but the BOATERS are super nice. We're all family.
Perhaps you just have a chip on your shoulder. If you project an attitude, good or bad, it comes back at you.

Pea pod- Cache Creek actually isn't bad, but as others have said most of the good rivers are east, in the sierra foothills. But it's not that far..an hour or so. It's REALLY dry this year! This is peak runoff season and there is zilch. Nada. Not sure when you're coming. Late summer/fall is typically the driest season, but the SFA may still release, and those are good runs. It can start raining in late October opening up some rain fed options.
There might be something to do, you never know. Pm me when you get closer.
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Re: Sacramento region

Post by Pea Pod » Wed Jun 10, 2015 7:11 am

Thanks Larry for the offer to get in touch, and a different opinion on OC acceptance in CA. It's one of those times when I'm glad there's not a consensus.

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Re: Sacramento region

Post by johnd » Wed Jun 10, 2015 1:13 pm

I'm just calling it like I see it. Some call it attitude, but I would call it knowledge-based awareness based on paddling with several clubs back east and in Colorado. I don't see how anyone can objectively say the paddling club situation is anyone near as organized, or user friendly as back east.

If only I still lived in Cleveland, Ohio .... sigh :cry:

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Re: Sacramento region

Post by Larry Horne » Wed Jun 10, 2015 2:28 pm

Clubs? Well there you go.
You don't need to join a club to boat. In fact, clubs are just clicky and tend to isolate. If you're somewhat anti social like me you're much better off meeting people one on one in the real world.

A club absolutely does NOT represent the state's boating community..
Larry

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Re: Sacramento region

Post by milkman » Wed Jun 10, 2015 3:18 pm

Paddling is clique-ish. you tend to paddle with your friends and the people you respect and trust inside or outside a club. Paddling style can determine some of that too. A lot of kayakers, and some canoeists for that matter, are river runners and just zip down the river and go home. Others, like myself, like to play on water features and make a day of a run.

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Clubs

Post by Einar » Wed Jun 10, 2015 8:21 pm

I can relate to johnd's thoughts.
Clubs can be conservative and cliquey and even occasionally downright hazardous due to their antiquated safety ideas but, overall, they serve a good purpose.
They get you on the water initially and expand your horizon to what is possible, although what is possible may not be possible inside the club.

Pretty much, if I was going to advance in canoeing into grade 3 and beyond, I would be soon networking outside a club, at least I did. It is not the clubs "fault", it is just the nature of paddling difficult water, with a good group of paddlers, of the same standards.

In a way the internet is a club for me but without the dues and hierarchy and rules. Most of my paddling with with people I met on the 'net.
e
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Re: Sacramento region

Post by johnd » Thu Jun 11, 2015 2:28 am

Thanks for all of the interesting opinions. Here is a link below to the schedule of dam release flows for the So. Fork of American that the original poster might find more useful than my other emails. You have to copy and paste it into a browser:


http://www.dreamflows.com/Pages/ChiliBarSchedule.php" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Sacramento region

Post by Pea Pod » Thu Jun 11, 2015 2:48 am

Thanks for the water release info. It looks like my visit will be too brief this time to venture further than Cache Creek. But I might return for a longer visit in a year's time.

I don't mind the club/kayak/OC/anti-social/ad-hoc boater talk. It gives me a feel for the cultural landscape. Things are different here. But similar too.

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