Thursday, June 03, 2010

Blog has Moved

This Blog has now moved if you glance here be sure to click here and head to the new site which is at
This new site has quite a few changes and I am hoping will be a bit more interactive. Look forward to hearing from you how you like it. Feel free to to get in touch under the contact area or check out thinks on the new facebook page.


Dave Prothero

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Lens Creek, Vancouver Island

The Lens

Last weekend the flows were running good enough to get in a trip to Lens Creek. This is an absolutely fabulous run. Setting stuff up with Jakub Drnec and Joe Box. I left Comox at 7:30am, knowing it would be a long day with great returns.
With great music and my trusty Honda Accord the drive went fairly smoothly. A couple of stops for good coffee. Met up with the lads at the Park and Ride on the North Cowichan turn off.
From there we drove out into the San Juan Peninsula heading down the Harris main and then into the woods on the Lens Creek Main. First down the West Main which we discover is closed. Boy was it ever, logs and a big ditch. No Passable way through. From there we took the East, which was in fairly good condition. We made it on to the river by 1:00pm.
The Put-in was a nice spot to enjoy a nice little rapid. The action starts downstream a little ways where you drop into the first Canyon. This one is pretty short with only a handful of rapids. We had good flows with the rock at the put in being almost covered.
This provided great action in the second canyon. This is where the goodies are. Loads of sweet rapids with a bit of mank. Had some great light for photography. As Joe said " there is always sun on the lens". It made for a four or so hour day on the river with a nice float out in the end.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Vancouver Island Classic…..Gordon River

Gordon River… Upper and Middle

Easter weekend extravaganza. THis was a wicked weekend. With a number of other boaters, great levels and some serious driving, the Copper Canyon on the Chemainus river was done at 35cms and I also got a run on the Upper and Middle Gordon river, a classic Vancouver Island Run.

Over 700kms of driving for two very worthwhile rivers. The Chemainus river had heaps of rain coming down while I was there, The river was rising, hence no photos. We had a couple of portages, one due to wood in the middle of a drop, the other was the normal portage below the Headwall rapid. Having been to the Copper Canyon a number of times in the past it was neat to run it with higher flows, as the rocks that normally show in the drop weren't there. Imagine a 800ft wall reaching up on river right and a sweet drop directly ahead of you with a walk option on river left. Just sweet. The rapids were all pretty clean with a bit of push to them. The bonus on this river is at the end you have the opportunity that you can run Bannon Creek Falls. A Cool 42ft waterfall with a slide to drop to slide to drop to slide exit. Pretty cool. Will have video up soon.

We had one swimmer on one of the last rapids of the day. The rescue went fine even though he swam through the rapid below.

I spent the weekend with family as the group ran the Harris river a couple of times and Cameron creek. Joining up for them again in North Cowichan and the mighty Gordon river and its sweet classics of the Upper and Middle Gordon.

We had sweet flows and quickly polished off the Upper Canyon. Afterwards we dropped into the middle. Starting with Loop Creek falls, which at this flow wasn't very nice so we did the slide/ chute thing on river right. It is about a 15ft drop. then straight into a nice chute. It was an amzing day with loads of cool rapids, some scouting a couple of portages and some fun photo taking oportunites. It was unfortunate when we got to the end of the canyon to find that they had logged to the edge of the Canyon rim, and a number of large trees had fallen into the river. Could be cause for caution in later days.

© Dave Prothero Photography/ Rafting Life 2010
Thanks to Braden, Jakub, Albert, and Chris for the fun times.

Friday, March 26, 2010

SRT weekend with Raven Rescue

Swiftwater Rescue Training

Two weekends ago I had the opportunity to audit my SRT course on the island. Raven Rescue was running a course down near Parksville. I had just finished my Health Care Course so the timing worked well. 
I jumped in my car and following Craig's directions arrived at the Englishan river in the morning just south of Parksville. The morning we spent with some dry land throw bagging and working on different scenarios. The afternoon was spent getting wet. Always my favorite part of the class.
The next day was spent on the Nanaimo river. There is a great little corner set of rapids which are great for praticing different rescue techniques. We spent the morning working on different anchor systems and mechanical advantage systems. Then we spent some time swimming in the Nanimo river. There is one sweet spot to pratice geting recirclated in a hole, which provided some great entertainment.
Great to get out and work on some rescue skills.

Picutres following the read more…cheers

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Port Renfrew Kayaking Weekend

The Ritz, Rivers and Scotch weekend.

This past weekend was a good one. I finished school on the friday, such a nice feeling. From there I headed off to a SRT course with Raven Rescue that took place on the Englishman and Nanaimo rivers. Good cold swimming in tose rivers. Good refresher on skills before heading off to Port Renfrew. Arrived there late on Sunday night and started to check out the flows. Love my little Ipod Touch, as it enabled me to wander down the street to check the river flows off an unrestricted wireless.
The next Moring I got up early to shoot some photos of Shayne surfing out at the mouth of the Gordon River. Nice rolling sets in his homemade surf Boat. Was loving my EOS 50D and 300mm f4 lens. Was able to sit on the beach and get a few nice shots.
By 10am we were loaded with one group heading off to the Gordon and the other consisting of Jeff, Shayne, Daniel, Denny and myself for the Harris River Canyon. If you have seen this river on the way to Port Renfrew you know it is a steep little section. Totalling 2kms long with 5% gradient it is exciting.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Upper Browns River

At the beginning of January I had the opportunity to get out on the Upper Browns river with Joe and Gillian Box. This is a seldom paddled river up in the Comox Valley.
This is a bit of a mission depending on the water level and good to do once and awhile. On this day we had a nice flow of 12-14cms.
We met up and stopped off at Kevin Lewis's place on the Browns River. The nice thing is you can take creek boats from the top and then switch to play boats for the last little bit down to the Puntledge river for big water play.
The drive to the put in is paved till you get to the base of forbidden ski hill, from there it is a bit more convoluted. Some washed out spots here and there. Though my Honda accord did make it up with only a few bumps.
We put in at the base of the Medicine Bowls, there is a portage shortly after this around a nasty slot. In January when we paddled there was a tree in the middle of this drop. It is basically the first corner you come to. Essentially 150m after putting on.
There are three drops near the top and then 6kms of fairly continuous class 3 - 3+. After switching to play boats we headed on down stream running the small falls on the Browns before meeting up with the high water puntledge.
Something interesting about going from 14cms to 350cms. The Puntledge was charging. In the trees and rippin along. This would be a quick trip down to the end.

Enjoy the photos.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Cameron River Vancouver Island

Cameron River

Located on the way to Port Alberni on Vancouver Island. This is a great creek. The call came from Shayne Vollmers that it would be running around 5-6 on the gauge. This is a very nice level for the Cameron. Provides nice consistent cushioning and nice flow so you can bomb down a lot of stuff. We met up at the gas station just outside Qualicum. Picked up a bit of fuel(read coffee) and we were on our way. Read through the rest of the story by pictures. Little write ups under some.

Filling up at the local gas station. Coffee to go, habitat loaded.
Dan Dunn ready to go for a paddle. View of the take out.
Steve Hunt hiking into the put in. About 30 ft up the road.
The lads on the river with a view of snow covered Mt Arrowsmith in the background.

Vancouver Island Fall Season

Vancouver Island 2009 Fall Season

The Author and Joe Box looking back up stream after the 2nd drop on Stotan Falls. One more slide to go before the finish. Then it is on to the play. Photo by Jakub Drnec.

Jakub Drnec running the first drop on Stotan Falls on the Puntledge river. Courtenay BC, Vancouver Island.

Well it has been a good season over on the west coast. Finally getting back into paddling after a year and a half off the river due to a broken shoulder, this fall has been pretty good. Huge flows on the puntledge. Some adventuring with a river board, taking my new Wavesport Habitat 80 down a number of runs a couple of new sections, a new river. Some waterfalls and lots of photography. All in all has been sweet.
Here you will find a number of photos showcasing a number of runs. A little write up about each will be included as well.
Follow the link for more