Big wet wood

Date: Sunday, 21 August 2022
River: Picton River.
Participants: 6.

A lot of rain and a high picton calling 6 committed faffsters - sorry Rafters, found themselves at the sheds excited to raft a picton that had since saturday dropped to a fairly normal level. Tony, Eva, Liam, BJ, Talia and I were excited nether the less and braved the cold Sunday morning. With no need for the trailer an incept, blue and packraft were packed as well as half the current guide paddles, and all the other usual gear all in the back of tonys car we hit the road.

We made our way to the get in with only 2 very efficient stops, at banjos to snack up and to look at riveoux bridge to decide our get out point. The recent heavy rains had moved around a lot of wood and showed it clearly over the bridge - woah! All excited at a lovely level Picton we headed up to the broken bridge get in and decided to run down to tahune.

With rafts pumps and the car shuffle done Liam gave an efficient safety brief and we all got on out way. Tony and I in the bucket, Eva Ben and Liam in the blue and Talia in the Packraft we all were floating down in no time. Returning from the car shuffle tony and Eva brought with them another car with two club friends in kayaks. Always nice to show off us all missing surfs and being fools in front of kayakers catching them with ease.

We bumbled our way down the river paddling and just missing lots of surf waves, while liam guided them into just about every eddie on the picton following the keen instruction of the guides course. He also backed away strongly from danger and attempted to tip punters out. The perfect guide.

After a careful inspection of the gorge for wood, we all shamed it through, with no flips of swims! wooo! very fun.

We continued to bumble down the river and by this point we had found ourselves in three teams of R2s with Talia employing BJ as a motor for the packraft. BJ enjoyed the comfortable backrest and insisted all pacrrafts should come with a girlfriend backrest, inflatable or otherwise. Talia and BJ as this combo had some trouble as they fell out of the packrat, reentered, found themselves sitting wrong and then in the process of correction once again fell out.

BJ also pulled my head into the water with tony holding my feet in the boat. Sitting myself back up the cool refreshing water gently ran down by back. At the mention of payback BJ started insisting he couldn’t possibly swim due to his ear, and paddled away as quickly as his little arms would let him.

Coming down to Riveoux bridge, i (somewhat jokingly) told Tony lets hit the hole sideways. As tony lined us up for the centre of the hole with minimal speed and sideways i chickened out and took us down backwards instead. this got a fair bit of water in the bucket, perfect. Liam and eva went of the centre area, and lost eva in the process. By the time tony and I had eddied out as was back in the boat and they were off again, only a little wet in the blue.

Below the bridge we all nearly surfed a lot of play waves and eva had another swim on flat water. We all laughed and chatted and admired the beauty and wood all around us. Tony emptied out the buckboat again and we were speed demons.

This bottom part was a lot longer in my memory, but with the good flow of the river we ended with no sore arms.

At Tahune bridge we all admired the amazingly placed wood and wondered how flat or nasty the river would be at 5 m.

We then all carried our rafts to the little gate before shoving all the gear along with the 6 of us, freshly dry and warm in Tonys car and heading for the get in to grabs evas car. the only debate was on where to stop for hot chips on the way home and we landed with the great potato cakes and chips from the huonville takeaway, eaten at the park under the gentle soothing tones of bagpipes.

Even with all of us trying our best to faff i was home nice and early for a nap after a very efficient pack down at the sheds.

Cheerio,

Ruth!

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