Concluding Statement

"Decay is inherent in all things; choose your path with diligence." ~last words of the Budda, 483 BC

Monday, December 2, 2013

Whitewater Tasmania

During the past year I have lost nearly all of my motivation for climbing in Tasmania. I've done pretty much all of the climbs I wanted to do here and those that are left are leaving me uninspired. I did take two climbing vacations - one to climb routes on Spanish limestone, the other to boulder in Grampians (post yet to come) - but I can tick off all my Tasmanian climbing excursions for the year without running out of fingers.

That said, I've not been Idle. Not for a long shot. In addition to finalizing my PhD, I've been dedicating a lot of my free time over the past 6 or 7 months into exploring the excellent whitewater that Tasmania has to offer...when it rains at least, which luckily for me has been a lot this season.  Over the past 8 years I pretty much gave up kayaking for climbing, but last year I was able to get out on a couple trips which showed me how good the rivers were here, and this year I've just really immersed myself in it. It's been my new focus for outdoor adventure and I've probably gotten out on more trips this year that anyone else in the state. Somewhere around 70 runs of class IV/V whitewater on more than 12 different rivers, all of which I would highly recommend.  Rivers like:

The North Esk, a local Launceston classic

The Cataract Gorge section of the South Esk, which literally is a 5 min walk from my house. Big drops and sometimes a big flows. 

The Nile River, a steep low volume creek with clean cold water that runs down a steep sided ravine off Ben Lomond. 

The Lake River, a ridiculously steep creek with a two or three km section that's got an average radiant of more than 1 in 10

And the Leven Canyon, a super classic wilderness run with some beautiful high canyon walls, cool rapids and two waterfalls which are compulsory to run do to the steep rock walls of the canyon. Once you've started, there's no turning back. 

I've been taking the GoPro out quite a lot on these adventures. It took a good number of trips before I got the hang of getting some footage that was worth anything, but I was able to piece together a short video from some of the more recent stuff that I've done mainly within the last 3 or 4 weeks. Enjoy-