Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Mexico Part I

Matt Wallace hurls himself into Puento de Dios on the Rio Tamasopo
John Crain enters the Cave below Puento de Dios

I just got back from San Louis Potosi, Mexico with Adam Goshorn, Leigh Knudsen, Jon Crain, Matt Wallace, Brandon Hughett and Alex Zendel. Within the epic 3 weeks of our journey we fired-up many creeks and rivers--taking only one off day during our time down there.

During our stay, we found ourselves in remote canyons often confronting obstacles such as massive waterfalls on the canyons of the Rio Verde, sieved-out boulder gardens and big water within the upper canyons of the Santa Maria, low water travertine drops on the Minas Viejas and a night paddle/hike out of the Gayenes. We climbed, hiked and rapelled around unrunnable rapids often putting ourselves at risk outside of running the class 4-5 and 5+ rapids, but ultimately we worked together as a team and got the job done each day. Here are some photos of our adventures.

A sequence shot of me on Puento de Dios
Photos by Leigh Knudsen

Among the easiest runs in the area (logisticaly speaking) were the Salto and Micos sections of the Rio Valles. Our base camp was nestled right by the Micos, and both of these runs offered plenty of gradient with minimal consequences. Adam even stated, "It's creeking made easy." Also, due to the nature of travertine rock these sections of river could be run at fairly low flows. Fortunately, subprime flows were never a problem except for the Minas Viejas run.
El Salto...The take-out for the Salto Section of the Rio Valles
Photo by Alex Zendel

Matt Wallace and I looking down at El Salto

John Crain by the last drop of the Micos Section
Adam Goshorn boofing through El Nemo

Adam on La Luminosa (El Nemo is above right)

John Crain on La Luminosa from a different angle

Me on another big drop on the Salto

Matt Wallace on the same drop as above

Leigh Knudsen boofing a ledge

I'm running another killer drop (Photo by Leigh Knudsen)

Leigh on the same drop as above

We fired up the Salto Section over a dozen times during our 3-week stay. It was a great stretch of water with big fun drops and an easy bike shuttle...very similar to the Micos Section of the Rio Valles. Unfortunately, many boaters tend to overlook other steep whitewater in the area and many Texas boaters stick to the classic runs such as the Micos & Salto Sections as well as the Ojo Frio (another great river we hit several times).

The Minas Viejas is a particular run that Adam explored last year that many boaters have overlooked. Adam completed the second known descent in November 2007 and since then this river has only been run just a handful of times. Here are some photos of this soon to be classic run.

Put-in Waterfall (Photo by Adam Goshorn)
Adam running the first ledge of the Minas Viejas

John Crain negotiating another low-water drop

Me running the big slide (Photo by Leigh Knudsen)
Me on another slide
Adam fires-up the 30-foot slide (Photo by Leigh Knudsen)

Me runnning the same slide. Really big and really clean...photos can't serve this justice.

Me and Adam on the Lower Canyon of the San Nicholas. Another great but overlooked run.(Photo by Leigh Knudsen)

Stay tuned for more photos of Puento de Dios, the 4 Canyons Expedition of the Santa Maria and the Rio Verde adventures in Mexico Part II!

Signing off for now,

Jordan Sherman

1 comment:

A said...

I don't think Adam Goshorn got a second descent of Minas. Mexican boaters have been running it for a few years now. Gringos are not the only boaters in the world!