It has been a busy weekend here with the guides out practicing their safety, river and paddling skills. The weather was pretty good for a May long weekend with hardly another soul on the river. It makes you feel like you own it.
Judging by the happy faces of our guides, everyone had a great day back on the water. Some brave souls even had to test the water to see if it was cold. A leap from jumping rock was quite convincing and insightful.I’ve again included some comparative pictures of Coal Camp Ledge to give you an idea of how the river is coming alive with the onset of spring in the last week. On the right is this weeks pictures and on the left is from a week ago. We’ve had a few sunny warm days around the Otter Rafting Centre that have been quite pleasant for spring. But it isn’t warming up very fast at the higher elevations where the headwaters of the Red Deer River are. The river has come up very little but you can see the beginning of a wave train forming after the rapid.
For another comparison, here is the same ledge from May 24/2009
You can see the river has washed away a gravel bar in the lower left. The water level in the river is at the same level for this date as other years. No early or late spring according to the river. The forecast is for a great year of paddling, especially with higher than average snows in the mountains. Expect high water one third of the way through June. This will be a season of rafting not to be missed.