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  • Lisa Parsons

House Rock and the Roaring 20s

Dave Scott running House Rock

Grand Canyon Day 2 On River

Soap Creek Camp (mile 11.3) to Fence Fault Camp (mile 30.6),

19.3 Miles

Soap Creek Rapid (5)

Sheer Wall Rapid (2)

House Rock Rapid (7)

Redneck Rapid (3)

North Canyon Rapid (5)

Twenty-one Mile Rapid (5)

Indian Dick: Twenty-three Mile Rapid (4)

Twenty-three and a Half Rapid (4)

Georgie: Twenty-four Mile Rapid (6)

Twenty-four Mile and a Half Mile Rapid (6)

Hansbrough Richards: Twenty-five Mile Rapid (6)

Cave Springs Rapid (5)

Twenty-seven Mile Rapid (5)

Twenty-nine Mile Rapid (2)

Fence Fault Rapid (5)

Rick running House Rock

House Rock is the first “BIG” rapid of the trip, in terms of rating. I would beg to differ. House Rock was a breeze in my I.K. Some of the Twenties and a few riffles and NADA Rapids seemed more formidable.

The Roaring 20s make for an action-packed day. Our group was raring to run the 20s in one day. I had a perfect run down the river until number 29. Rapid 29 was clearly a big wave roller coaster. Read and run. I was having a fun time and then dipped down into a deep trough before coming up the wave that rolled up as I paddled. Then at the last minute, it rolled sideways and formed a towering peak that rolled to the left tossing my kayak sideways to the left and launching me out of my boat.

I’d been practicing this moment for a long time. What to do when the water is tossing you in circles. Breath when you break through the water. Breath before you tumble down into the white messiness again…and again…and again. I tumbled 3 or 4 times, catching my breath in the troughs before eddying out on river right. David was waiting on river left but another wave carried me back across the river to the right Eddie. My boat was floating in the Eddie and I had to swim, with my paddle, like a 3-legged flailing wet dog. I made it back to my boat and in a burst of energy did the second thing I’ve been practicing, self-rescue. I climbed back into my boat and turned into the downstream current to continue downstream. In hindsight, it was a pretty fun run!

Everyone made it through the day, without injury, except our retired paramedic, not me. Steve ran Georgie sideways. He fell out of the back of his boat but managed to keep his boat from flipping with a lucky handhold on a strap. His injuries, a bruised hip, and calf were, hopefully, not a foreshadowing of the trip.

We ran 13 rapids, 3 riffles, and a few NADA rapids. A great intro into the canyon as we paddled up to Fence Fault Camp in search of Ring-Tailed Cats that were supposedly set up in the camp just over the sand hump in Sandpile Camp.

More about NADA Rapids. Those are the squiggly lines on the map in the river that are not identified by name or riffle rating. They aren’t technically rapids via our guide but after running a number of them I would beg to differ. There were a few that caught us by surprise. After the first few we decided to call them Notta or NADA Rapids. David and I would look at each other and say “NADA Rapid”.

Next up: The Ravens...

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