Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Spring Trip Destination

Ok.  New plan, new river.

Since we're going to miss out on observing the 10-year anniversary of The Pavilion, we will instead mark the 15-year anniversary of our first organized RRCC trip by going back to the Buffalo River.

Back in the year 2000, when Josh looked like this.

The Big Daddy was on its very first trip.

 And Tim was still chopping like Sisyphus,
trying to work his way up in the kitchen.

As promised, we will spend Friday night on dry, BBQ-smoker-accessible land.  Vernon wanted to pull it up to the Drone Bar, and I'm sure Hippie would have let us.  But we need to be riverside, at a put-in, so we can run the shuttle Friday afternoon and shove off without driving anywhere Saturday.   Otherwise we won't be on the river until after lunch again (see Piney River last fall).

So Friday night (and Saturday morning launch) will be at "Buffalo Canoe and Camp" at River Mile 88.

Our 2000 inaugural trip started a bridge or two downstream from there (Mile 73 to Mile 63).  The Spring 2010 trip that started at David Fox's place took out at Mile 93.  This trip will be right between them.

Buffalo Canoe and Camp is a commercial campground, so we might not be alone which is fine. There are campsites on the river bank, but when I asked the owner if we could set up on the gravel bar proper instead of the designated campground he said that would be ok "If you can get down there."

He obviously doesn't know what we can and will do to get down to a gravel bar.

For the river trip, there are two major access points within range downstream.  Topsy Bridge is 8 miles from the put-in (from Friday night camp) and Bell Bridge/Hwy 13 is 15 miles.  Click on the map.

We could do either of those, but in my view 8 miles is a little short for an overnighter.  And 15 miles will make for either a potentially long day on Saturday or a long morning and late return on Sunday.

I noticed on the map that there is another bridge two miles up from Bell Bridge (see unmarked arrow).   A 13 mile total trip would be perfect:  10 mile paddle on Saturday, 3 mile paddle on Sunday. I'm not familiar with the bridge, though, so don't know if it's a viable access.   So what we'll do is just drive to the unknown bridge on the shuttle, and if we can't take out there go on to Bell Bridge and do the long trip.

Hopefully we can, though, because I've got my eye on this good looking island right under Pine Bluff which happens to appear at exactly the 10 mile mark on Saturday...

If you look real close you can see where the Irish Oven goes.

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