Echols Dorm: Brick Wall By Side Door
Do your homework early, check/adjust your exam and/or work schedules, etc.. This is going to be sweet!
The emphasis of this trip will be to enjoy whitewater. There is plenty of class III-V whitewater in the area including: The Cheat, Upper/Lower Yough, Big Sandy, etc. Priority will be given to those who are interested in paddling, but there are plenty of other dryland alternative activities available such as the 5K Cheat Race on Saturday morning, hiking, and music-listening, and I’m sure there’s some rock you can climb on.
Drylanders: You’re encouraged to do your own recon of the rocks, trails, etc within this region, and let me know if you want to lead some sort of dryland trip while up here and we can make this a bit of a multisport adventure.
More info about the festival/music, etc at: http://cheat.org/festival/ you can also buy your ticket online in advance and save $5.
IMPORTANT: I am leading this trip exclusively to organize logistics for Cheat Fest/Camping/Food, and am not promising to lead anyone down anything! If you join this trip, you are accepting personal responsibility for your safety and what you choose to do. We will most likely be meeting up with other paddling groups (Coastal Canoeists, Blue Ridge River Runners, etc.) to try to accommodate multiple skill levels. Those who wish to raft will be responsible for making their own rafting arrangements (more on that, keep reading…)
This is where I make a futile attempt to minimize C-ville’s carbon footprint for this event, as 8 different people will want to leave and return at 8 different times. So anyways, I am personally looking to head up Thursday night to secure a campsite (they go quick), and get a full 3 days of paddling – Thus I have indicated a departure time of 5/3/12 at 1900ish. So if you can’t make it till Friday or have to get back earlier, sign up anyways and we’ll see if we can get you a ride in another vehicle. Once the trip roster is set we will figure out final ride arrangements, I put Echols as the default departure location and will keep you posted if that changes.
We’ll most likely be camping at Teter’s Campground which is adjacent to the festival itself and is also the Cheat Canyon putin (so stumbling distance) away, and comes complete with hot showers and flush toilets. Bring a tent/pad if you have one.
The club reimburses up to $8/day/person and we will be responsible for paying for the remainder of the food expenses, I’ll hit up Sams Club. (There is also delicious food at the festival – but you’ll be responsible for paying for that).
The Cheat Canyon, Upper Yough, and Lower Yough are pretty much guaranteed to be running at some point over the weekend, and these require at the very least intermediate skills, but some other paddling groups might be hosting novice level trips on some other nearby river. This will NOT be a first time in a whitewater boat friendly trip, only sign up if you’ve been on a few previous river trips.
The Cheat Canyon is known as “The Beast of The East” and while it has been eclipsed by the popularity of the New and Gauley, it remains an excellent (uncrowded) “big water” playground! Satisfy your curiosity about the rapids by youtubing Cheat Canyon, or a famous rapid known as “big nasty”. The nearby Class V Upper Yough will also be releasing cheatfest weekend (The maximum gradient of the Upper Yough is nearly 3 times that of the upper gauley!)
Those who want to guarantee themselves an opportunity to raft, should make arrangements with a commercial company. Email me for suggestions on which company to use (Prices appear to range from $79-$94 for Cheat Canyon Trips, and $120-155 for upper yough depending on what day you pick)
Alternately – you can attempt to hitch a ride on a private raft, which are owned/guided by a non-commercial entities, and depending on who supplies the raft, there may be a nominal daily rental fee i.e. $35/person/day and a tip for the guide is always suggested on both commercial and private trips.
Private raft trips are usually not as organized as commercial trips, and will require some additional participant effort (i.e. carrying/setting up the raft), and they don’t come with a fancy lunch. You can also do cool things on them such as run 14 foot waterfalls: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vobIjFLq2u0 (That was my group at Cheat Fest ’09 on another nearby river).
Again NO GUARANTEES as of yet that private rubber will be available, I’ll keep yall posted if I find out for sure that space will be available on a private raft.
In the questions section, please indicate if you’re trying to get on a raft, and which type (commercial / private).
– Kayaking gear if you have it
– Tent/sleeping bag/stove/camping stuff if you have it
– Snacks, and clothes (for on and off the river). You should avoid cotton while packing your river clothes and remember to pack some warm stuff too!
– CASH – Admission to the festival is $15. Please bring extra cash (ATMs will be in short supply) for extra spending money (for buying gear, going out to eat, etc). I put $30 as the fee below — you should bring more cash if you plan to raft or buy gear. (If you raft, don’t forget to tip your guide)
CLUB PROVIDES: kayaking gear if you need it, camping gear if you need it, camping fees, food $$, gas $$ up to $150/vehicle. Let me know in the Q/A what you need.
Aspiring whitewater kayakers: Most of the trips here tend to require more experience, so you should strive to get on every river trip and roll practice available prior to this one to expand your potential paddling options while at Cheat Fest.
Don’t freak out about being on the waitlist – I’ll reassess newb paddling abilities and raft availability when it gets closer, and let people off as appropriate – keep those Q/A’s up to date!