Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Cheat River Narrows

What do you do when it’s hot and humid with no creeking in sight?
I took my 8month pregnant wife and 2 year old son on a duckie trip to the Cheat Narrows .
This section of the Cheat features pleasant pool drop rapids, roadside access, pretty scenery, and less environmental damage than the Canyon downstream; the Narrows sustains fish and other aquatic life, and has normal colored rocks. That’s not to say that it doesn’t have threats; several AMD laden creeks run into the Narrows, and agricultural runoff and other problems always lurk. BUT, I saw a fisherman land a pretty little trout on our run, and that’s not something you see a few miles downstream.
We met up with Janet and Kristina Szilagyi in Kingwood, and headed down over the hill to the river. We dropped and inflated gear, then set shuttle to take out where Pringle Run flows into the Cheat.
Patrick was stoked.

Rebecca sat up front, I sat in back and Patrick sat between my feet. He giggled and yelled “FUN!” when we went through rapids, and even stole Rebecca’s paddle so he could help Daddy. He’s awesome.

Janet and Kristina in a calm spot.

I asked Kristina to take our picture in Calamity Rock Rapids, and while I waited for her and Janet to get downstream and set up, I bank scouted the rapid, to be extra double super sure of where I would pilot the boat. Kristina took a fun shot of us.

At the Mystery spot below Calamity, I plopped out the back of the boat and caught some nice downtime. Patrick was pretty surprised, and yelled "Daddy... get back in boat right...NOW!" in his best scolding voice. We finished up the trip in a pleasant hour and a half, Kristina rescued a runaway pool-croc at the take out, and a good time was had by all.