Echols Dorm: Brick Wall By Side Door
Ray's Campground (Hico, WV)
The section of the New River above the gorge is a 7 mile stretch from Thurmond to Cunard, WV and has 5 class 2 rapids separated by a bit of calm water and ends with the famous class 3, “Surprise” rapid. This is a great place for beginners-intermediates to get an intro to big water, and work on river skills like reading rapids, ferrying, eddy hopping, and combat rolling. This stretch also serves as a warm-up for intermediates who want to step up their game and run the gorge (more info below).
For more info about this river section check out:
Get to the campsite Friday afternoon/eve, set up camp, get a campfire rolling, eat, drink, and be merry. Rise with the sun on Saturday, eat a hearty breakfast (I might do camp food, get breakfast from the campsite – Ray makes a mean breakfast – or possibly hit the Cathedral Cafe – the best pre-adventure meal experience ever!), pack a lunch and our gear, then set shuttle (drop cars at put-in and take-out). We’ll put-in at Thurmond as early as possible and paddle to Cunard where the beginner types will take-out and shuttle back to the put-in to pick up the other vehicle(s) and then shuttle to Fayette Station, the take-out for the lower section and where the intermediate-advanced crew amongst us will end (which I might set up as a separate trip). We’ll be on the water for several hours so please be sure to bring plenty of food and water (which the club will provide).
A few important notes:
1. PRIOR EXPERIENCE IS NECESSARY. You must have taken the intro to kayaking class with me or have similar experience to go on this trip. Since I will have to screen your qualifications your name will get added to the waitlist upon signing up, and then moved to the trip list if appropriate.
2. You might have the opportunity to paddle Saturday and/or Sunday. If a lot of people are interested in paddling, I will do my best to solicit another kayaking trip leader to shepherd you down the river on Sunday. I will try to get that squared away at least 1 week before the trip so that you can plan accordingly.
3. If you signed up for my NRGE “Base Camp” trip please withdraw from that AFTER (if) you get off from this trip’s waitlist, or after you get onto another adventure’s trip list. Stay on the Base Camp’s trip list if you do not get off this waitlist, or onto another adventure, and you still want to go to the Extravaganza.
I am NOT “leading” on this river, I am only coordinating some logistics and transportation to the rivers. I will provide advice about each rapid and you are welcome to follow me, however, you are responsible for your own safety and the activities you choose to participate in while on this trip, and you agree to have read, and will abide by, the American Whitewater Safety Code http://www.americanwhitewater.org/content/Wiki/safety:start?
Those with the appropriate skills may join as “Common Adventurers”
I do not plan to do any cooking but will get groceries for us to share. This will include: easy breakfast items like granola/cereal bars, poptarts, fruit, OJ, instant oats, bagels, etc.; lunch items like bagel sandwiches with cold cuts, tunafish, cheese, etc. snacks, and fruit; dinner items like instant pasta preparations. The allotment from the club is $8/person/day (although this might change) so will take the number of participants x $8 x 2 days and go to Sam’s Club. If you have any specific requests you can note them in the questionnaire upon joining this adventure. I will eat out for breakfast for at least 1 day and dinner for at least 1 night (mmmm, “Pies and Pints”!). I’ll bring my camp stove and at least one of the clubs.
We’ll be staying at Ray’s Campground: http://www.rayscampground.com/
There is plenty of space, bathrooms/showers, firewood to purchase, and good people. For directions you can follow the link above or the “adventure destination” link posted with this adventure.
The club will cover part of your camp fee ($9.00 per person per night)
For now I am putting down $20 as a base trip fee to make sure everything gets covered (you may have additional fees depending on the potential separate adventure you might choose; this is the same $20 as I set in the “Base Camp” adventure, NOT in addition to). The bill can get pretty hefty with a huge group traveling, camping, and chowing. I don’t want this trip to put too large of a dent in the club’s checking account, but may be able to reduce the fee. The club’s officers are currently working on getting some outside (Ha! No pun intended!) funding to help subsidize this trip. I’ll know more as the date draws near and will let you know. Whatever the case, your trip fee goes toward lodging fees, food, ga$, and camping gear rental (we had such a huge turnout last year that we had to rent several tents!)
For now I am setting 4pm as a tentative departure time from Echols. My plans are to take Friday off from work and head out to Ray’s Thursday night or early Friday. As such I will need drivers to make this work. I will give priority to the first 2-3 drivers who sign up (and have the appropriate prerequisite skills). The departure time, as other trip details, may change as the date draws near. I will let you know well in advance of the trip.
THE CLUB PROVIDES: boats, spray skirts, paddles, pfds, helmets, noseplugs, drybags, float bags (limited quantities), neoprene booties, paddle jackets (limited sizes/quantities), boat transportation, shuttle ride, camping gear (limited), part of camping fee, some food, some ga$.
YOU SHOULD BRING: swimwear, footwear that can get wet (though the club has an ample supply of neoprene booties), towel, sunblock, food/snacks, water, your boat and gear if you have it, camping gear (if you have it), clothes (prep for cool nights and mornings; non-cotton layers for the river), a way to entertain yourself for when you are not paddling (which may be one of the two days that we are out there), flashlight, toiletries, money