Trinity River (Weitchpec Gorge)
|Stretch:||Hoopa to Weitchpec|
|Difficulty:||Class II+ (III)|
|Flows:||800 – ?000 cfs. Current Dreamflows gauge|
|Put-in:||Last road on 3 before leaving Hoopa|
|Shuttle:||10 miles (15 minutes one way)|
|Season:||Spring and summer from dam release|
The best day on my troops 50 miler trip, this day boast a steep gorge which creates big wave trains and some creeky slaloms. Some years my troop would camp within the canyon one night which made for an awesome experience. This run is more challenging than the two upriver stretches described as part of the trip. In addition to the numerous class II and II+ rapids Weitchpec Falls which is a class III rapid that can instill plenty of fear in a class II boater. The best scenery of the Lower Trinity, this stretch has shear cliffs climbing hundreds of feet up. The road above provided new cars in the water from the drunk drive missing a turn. The other cautionary note is that this is part of the Indian Reservation so net fishing is allowed. Be aware of nets on eddy fences, swimming into one would be disastrous. You can just about always see a net from above as there will be floaters along the top of it, but still, set safety if one is in play.
- Lockharts Rock/Wall (II+). The first rapid right at put in bends sharply. A rock
is in the middle of the rive waiting to flip you. If flipped most of the current
pushes you into the wall below which can take you under for a little.
- Weitchpec Falls (III). After a long and flat straight away this rapid forms a nice
large horizon line. There was always a beach and eddy just above it on the right.
We would scout and portage if desired from here on the right. The line was usually
down the left cutting right. Some years the channel on the right was runnable.
Either way, a large portion of the water hits a large rock and rolls off into a hole
which can eat a boat.
Confluence (II+). This rapid changed regularly. Some years we would beach ourselves on the right above the rapid, carry 40 feet to the Klamath and run its side.
Take out: Heading north on 96 go through Hoopa to Weitchpec. Just on the other side of the bridge over the Klamath take a left. Take another immediate left on road which will lead down to the water.
Put in: On highway 96, head back up the Gorge to Hoopa, just as you come out of the gorge, you will see a small road on the right. Take this and it leads down to the water. Don't remember the name of it, but I believe it is the first you will come to.
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