Monday, April 21, 2008

The River Styx

Dave getting excited about his first Styx run.

The Styx River has always been my go to river when I was learning to paddle and now when I go back to the West Coast. It is a good introductory West Coast run that does not require a helicopter or ridiculious carry in (5 or more hours) to get to the goods. After an easy 50-80min walk along a clear well-marked track you are will find yourself facing some continuous class IV+ action. The rivers intensity decreases slowly into class IV then III all the way to the get out. There is a small gorge type section right before the get out and at higher flows this can turn into two large river wide holes. The best thing about this run is you can see the river almost the whole time you are carrying in and this gives you an opportunity to select a put in that suits you in relation to the flow. Here is some pictures of the run at various flows.

Dave and myself walking into a medium flow styx.

Myself standing at the usual top get in.

Barny Young and Myself on a low Styx.

Some of these photos will illustrate the various flows that the Styx can be run at. Barny and myself have run it a lot together and walked in one day when it was on the rise and got on a high flow as you will be able to see by comparing photos.

Barny and myself about to paddle the same section as above - much higher

Splitting the rocks

Low Styx in 2006

Barny and Myself on a high Styx 2007 - same drop as above

This river is a great asset to the west coast and is still currently free of Dydimo. I hope it stays that way and I urge people to make sure they clean their gear before paddling any part of the Styx River as well as all rivers around New Zealand.

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