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Trip Reports

Sideling Hill Ck - 220 cfs - 31 March 2018
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Water: 224 cfs diminishing to 214 [min 200]   Old Rte 40 bridge to the Potomac,   11:30 to 4:00   31 March 2018
[Out-of-towners:  This is a Class II run of 12 miles, from the Md Alleghenies down to the Potomac - we did 12 miles.]

Sunny - cold, warming to 60 by take-out time. No snow, but no green visible on the trees.  Water coming in from side-brooks.  Fine scenery, no wind. - Ideal.  This level, albeit low was very satisfying, swift, with minimal scraping.  Indeed, Mike, who comes often, said that at 600 cfs, the river, though fast, has most of the rapids washed out.  A thoughtful Bob Whiting called us while we were waiting for our third paddler at Sidling Hill Gap to alert us to three downed trees (not dangerous) that he'd encountered on the previous day.  We managed to surmount, pull through or otherwise finesse (we had a saw) most, and came upon a fourth one on the last stretch.  

      From a group of seven, our paddling mob dwindled to just Barb & me in one car and Virginia del R in the other - the bare minimum for a trip.  But then we got incredibly lucky as a man called Mike from Hagerstown rode up on a bike just finishing his pre-paddle shuttle from having dropped off his truck at the 6-mile take-out.  He suggested that we forgo the shuttle malarkey, paddle down with him on the spot, and have him then return our two drivers to the cars at the put-in.  An hour saved. 

    At the end, Barb came up with a better suggestion - unselfishly she suggested she and her boat return with Mike to the top, and then she drive to pick Ginny and me up at the Potomac - so we might save an hour standing around cooling off in the oncoming late afternoon.   We saw a herd of deer splashing across the stream, some otters, and a turtle under the water. 

     I somehow missed the Mile 9 camping place, and so was surprised when the Pearre Rd bridge (with the Bellegrove gauge) hove in sight.  Further down, Barb, waiting for us on the C&) Canal aqueduct, was less surprised, as she had seen birds fleeing before us before we rounded the final bend.

Met at Meyersville McDs at 9:00 - found that a member was not joining us, so split at 9:00 to await Virginia at the Sideling Hill Cut (I'd given her a wrong time, so we got to the River only at 11:00 instead of an hour previously.   After supper in Hancock at Weavers Bakery, we parted company, arriving at home by 9:30.

     Another wonderful day on the river.

 
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