Due to a crazy work year, my wife Diane and I have not been able to hit the river as much as we would like. Last year I logged sixty-two personal first descents, and this year I was only at seven. Perhaps that is why on a whim, with no water in Tennessee, Diane and I opted to drive north 4 1/2 hours to chase water in West Virginia.
The Plan was to boat Mill Creek in the morning, before meeting up with a friend to run the easier Middle Meadow that the evening. The challenge was that Diane didn’t get home from her night shift until 7 am. Luckily she can sleep anywhere, so while I drove, she caught some z’s and woke up at the river relatively rested, and certainly motivated to kayak.
We found low, but sufficient water levels. I for one don’t mind low water on steep creeks when no one in the group has done the run before. It ensures that you have eddies to catch, and have less concerns about eddy hopping and boat scouting - and that was the name of the game. Jumping out to scout a few horizon lines also gave me the opportunity to shoot some video. We quickly made it to the take-out with plenty of time to meet up with our friend for the evening run.
Leaving that weekend, I now had nine personal first descents, with more on the horizon with our planned two week kayak vacation to Austria.