Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Mini Huck - Fall Creek Falls (4.1.12)

Recently, for some reason, it always feels like there is either too much or too little water whenever the weekend hits. On this particular weekend, we seemed to have a little too much, but of course that wasn't going to stop us from getting out. On Saturday I headed up north for an awesome day on Hagen Gorge/NF Washougal, but Sunday I was looking for something local. The only person I was able to recruit was Roman, probably my most reliable kayaking buddy. With only a few options, I suggested an exploratory day of sorts, in the Fall Creek drainage. Based on the alternatives, he agreed, and we made plans for our departure.

After meeting up in town we headed east toward the Fall Creek watershed, one of the closest to Eugene. The creek I was looking at was near the top of the drainage, so it took a bit of time to get there. Driving up the creek it looked like it had a really good flow, and after hiking down to take a look at one of the drops, I starting thinking that the run just might be worth it. This would change once the road started ascending in a hurry and peeling away from the run. Since we weren't really prepared for a full-fledged exploratory mission, we decided to cut our losses and run some laps on a 10'er, located on Fall Creek itself, not far downstream.

The falls are situated just above a mile long mini-gorge, which is very scenic but has minimal whitewater. Unfortunately it also has a couple pieces of poorly placed wood, making it not really worth the venture. As for the falls, they aren't very tall, but they do have a perfect lip for practicing your delayed boof -- in fact, it's very similar to Little Brother on The Green Truss, just smaller. It's also about as easy as it gets for lapping, with bank access just above and just below. With that, we geared up and got ready for some good ol' boof practice.

Roman dropped in first

The author on his first attempt
(photo by Roman Androsov)

(photo by Roman Androsov)

(photo by Roman Androsov)

By the time we had tired ourselves out, we had each put in about 6 or 7 laps. Before we headed home I thought it might be worth doing a falls-to-falls run on Portland Creek. Unfortunately when we got up there, we noticed a new log just below the takeout falls, killing any motivation we had to put on the run. Even so, I figured it might be worth running just the top falls (Triple Scoop), so we headed up there to check it out. Since it didn't look like it had good takeout access below, Roman opted out, but also offered to shoot photos. I figured, "what the hell, I'm already geared-up", and ended up running two laps before calling it a day.

The author goes for the single scoop on Triple Scoop
(photo by Roman Androsov)

Although we didn't put in any river miles, I still had a good time. With its relatively close proximity to Eugene, easy access, and good characteristics for boof practice, I'd say it's worth heading up to for some mini park & huck if levels are good -- we had ~2,500cfs on the Fall Creek gauge, located here.

The flow on the day we ran the falls (~2,500cfs)


  1. Looks sweet! Dude, you shoulda called me - I totally would've gone for that. Yeah, I know I haven't been very reliable as far as getting out lately...I guess I got no one to blame but myself for that...

    1. Next time for sure Ken. To be honest, We'd planned to do an exploratory, but it didn't pan out. This ended up being our backup since it happened to be in the area.

      On that note, usually my exploratory mission don't pan out, so I reserve those ones for people that get out on the water enough to not hate me for wasting a day of paddling. =)