At the 10th of June we left Asheville to start our roadtrip west to meet Leif and Natalie. We met them both on our second Unganda-Trip to the White Nile and both paddle for the American Fluid-Team.
In Uganda they both told us great stories from their annual trips to the Slave River up in the north of Canada, where there are perfect playspots throughout the whole summer. At every waterlevel you can find a great playspot, but the only thing is, you have to know where to find it. So we decided we have to come with them and explore the Slave-River.
As we leave Asheville, North Carolina, they both are at the Salmon River in Idaho and GoogleMaps told us that we have to drive 39 hours to get to them!
As we want to surf the tidal-wave Skookumchuck with Natalie and Leif in a couple of days as the level will be perfect we have to hurry up. The first night we drive straight and change every 3 hours. On the second night we get too tired and have to make a stop for a couple of hours. Like this we did 30 hours of straight driving and around 2000 miles (over 3000 km).
On the next morning we drive the last 6 hours to Riggins, Idaho, what a piece of cake! At the early afternoon we finally meet Leif and Natalie and straight go for a mellow paddle at Racecreek-Hole.
After the hole-session we go and check out the Chaircreek-Wave. Unfortunately it was on its high end and too green.
As the river level has gone up the whole day instead of down, we cooked a delicious dinner and after that we start to travel some more.
Our next stop is the White Salmon and here we want to first paddle the Farmland section, a small class IV creek, which has some surprising wood in it.
After the run we drove to the take-out of the Little White Salmon, one of the class V classics of the West-coast and there we met Dan, a friend of Leif, who just did an after-work-run. We drive with him to his home in Portland and could finally again enjoy a warm shower.
On the next day Leif, Natalie and Markus run the Little White Salmon, which is one of the classic class V whitewater runs on the West-Coast and in my opinion one of the most continuous stout rivers I´ve paddled so far, with the one and other random strainer in there. Maria is kind to do the Shuttle and meets Rush Sturges and Casper Van Kalmthout at the takeout. Rush has been shooting some footage for another car-commercial and Casper came to BC with a bunch of his Dutch friends because they did not find much water in California.
In the evening we are invited to Dan Rubado’s house in Portland and his wife Lizzie cooks a monster delicious Pad-Thai!
After the dinner we leave really late in the direction of Vancouver, Canada, so we can catch the ferry from Vancouver to Langdale at the next day! We make a short stopover in Vancouver at Arla Yost’s place, a friend of Natalie and eat some great breakfast! As well we meet up with our friend Alison Homer, who we met on our first Uganda-trip and who will join us for our trip to Skooks.