The last three weeks we have gotten a LOT of rain. It has been pouring down not just buckets of rain but olympic sized swimming pools of rain! While that is bad news if you live in a low lying area prone to flash floods, the kayakers around here are thrilled. All of the rivers are high and flowing fast and the adventure seekers are flocking to them. Stephen of course cannot resist the call of the river and has been paddling once or twice a week.
Yesterday afternoon Stephen’s friend called him and asked him if he wanted to go paddling but wouldn’t tell him where they were going. It turns out that they went to DuPont State Forest in North Carolina. I have been to DuPont a few times to hike and look at the various waterfalls. It is a very picturesque there and has been a filming location for two movies, the Last of the Mohicans and Hunger Games.
Little did I know that people actually kayak parts of the Little River that goes through the state forest! So, yesterday a group a paddlers put on the river and headed towards Hooker Falls. This adventure is not for the faint of heart. White water rivers are ranked on a scale for their level of difficulty. One being the easiest and six being rivers that have not been attempted because death is almost certain. Hooker Falls is ranked a five….because it is a 14 foot drop off!!!!
Stephen said he was a little scared and almost turned around when he saw the guy ahead of him go over the fall and drop out of sight. But he paddled hard to gain speed and launched off the fall. As he was dropping down his boat turned and he rolled upside down when he hit the pool below. He rolled back upright and was ecstatic! He wanted to go down again!
He wanted to conquer Hooker Falls and land at the bottom without rolling, but all three times ended up rolling upside down. The people he was with thought that he kept twisting or turning as he came off the waterfall because he was in a really short play boat that wasn’t as stable as their longer boats. But they also said that he was able to launch the farthest because his boat was lighter.
I wish I had been there to watch Stephen go off the waterfall. I know that I would have been nervous but it would also have been exciting!