This cleverly named torrent affords a 5.5-mile run that evolves from placid to thrilling. The cruise starts with a relaxing 2.5-mile float through a mostly wooded, gorge-like valley marred only by a few mining scars. There are many riffles and uncomplicated rapids. After passing the first bridge, the gradient increases, and rounded sandstone boulders form long, complex rapids. This is great fun and quite exciting, but it can only be considered a warm-up exercise if the final mile from the second bridge down to the Tygart is on your itinerary.
Rapids become steeper and more complex, climaxing in a memorable stretch that begins with a steep boulder rapid in which the water piles into a big, nightmarish “floating” boulder with about half the river flowing underneath it (Class 6). Next are two huge sloping ledges, which are, in turn, followed by a ten-foot falls runable on the extreme right and two short but intense and exacting boulder piles. If you survive all this and make it to the Tygart, congratulate yourself.
© Charlie Walbridge et al/Menasha Ridge Press. All Rights Reserved.