Nov 4, 2020 at 10:39 am #3682297
The 2021 Open will start at 0800 MDT, Saturday May 28th. Start will be the South Fork Teton TH, finish the Sunset Hill bridge on the Blackfoot River, just upstream from the Clearwater. Course area is all public land in Montana. Note: there is no overnight parking at the finish. The usual guidelines apply.
-This is not a race.
-You must be entirely self-supported and self-contained. Take everything you need, and leave nothing behind but footprints. Any pre-planned assistance of any kind is forbidden.
-Any form of human-powered locomotion is allowed within the identified course area. No linear travel on the surface of paved roads.
-You are responsible for you. Come prepared for challenging conditions which can easily, with improper luck or preparation, turn life-threatening. Any and all contingency and emergency plans must be arranged in advance by each individual.
and so it begins again :)Nov 4, 2020 at 1:54 pm #3682329Roger CaffinModerator
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
What is ‘linear travel’?
Even on ‘the surface of a paved road’? Can you do it above or under the surface?
CheersNov 5, 2020 at 11:47 am #3682481Tom MBPL Member
Let the route planning begin. No raft is gonna equal a terrible road walk at the end. Passing Trixies at the end is just cruel and unusual punishment…Nov 5, 2020 at 4:18 pm #3682522
the end is not looking superb at this junctureNov 6, 2020 at 6:14 am #3682618Josh JBPL Member
Yikes! Looks like another good on. Those ranges look crazyNov 6, 2020 at 11:55 am #3682677
Come visit Roger, then you’ll understand.
The Blackfoot-Clearwater WMA is open May 15, and is a very cool place to walk through. But, yes punishing the raftless more than usual this year. Sorry not sorry?Nov 6, 2020 at 12:07 pm #3682678
The Blackfoot-Clearwater WMA is open May 15, and is a very cool place to walk through.
that could definitely be an option, but walking into Trixies with a 100 mile hunger sounds pretty good too :)Nov 9, 2020 at 9:04 pm #3683169Dan MBPL Member
mike, tom , here we go again ! its looking like the michigan crew is coming back- covid or not , we’ve got some scores to settle with the “Bob”- haven’t looked at the route yet , but judging from your comments—Nov 10, 2020 at 7:15 am #3683219Josh JBPL Member
I live in south bend about 30min from you and have tried sending some DMs. I’d love to talk to you about the Bob Open as I want to do it! I’m not sure about 2021 yet but soon!Nov 20, 2020 at 10:32 am #3684945Andrew CBPL Member
Am I crazy for thinking the best route from Benchmark to the Blackfoot is off trail over Observation Point and down the Dry Fork? Maybe @twofeathers has seen that section before?Nov 20, 2020 at 1:32 pm #3684980Tom MBPL Member
Andrew I have been to the pass between Flint and Observation point a few times. I guess all would depend on how you plan on getting there from the CDT (202 or 246).Nov 20, 2020 at 8:07 pm #3685025Kyle PBPL Member
Interesting indeed! Andrew, what happened to keeping route info a little close to the vest this far out ;) Put on some skis and investigate!
Hope everyone is doing well out there.
KyleNov 20, 2020 at 9:06 pm #3685030
I hope at least a few folks float the Dry Fork. It deserves more attention.Nov 20, 2020 at 9:21 pm #3685034
Check out the patchwork of land ownership in the southern portion of the route…Nov 20, 2020 at 9:42 pm #3685036
@davec can you clarify the start point:
Nov 22, 2020 at 9:30 am #3685178Will BBPL Member
- the trailhead at the corrals (off of road 190-D) that starts right at the S Fk river crossing, or
- the end of the road TH that heads up to HQ Cr Pass?
If I make it out there this year I imagine I’ll do the bottom 4 or 5 miles of the Dry Fork into NF Blackfoot. Hope it’s not a huge water year so the NF isn’t too high to boat.Nov 22, 2020 at 10:43 am #3685188Scott GBPL Member
Dave, I was eyeballing the Dry fork and reading your notes on it in the ” Packrafting the Crown” book. Sound intriguing along with the N. Fork of the Sun. Both of which are on my to do list.
My big question is what part of the N. Fork of the Blackfoot and the Blackfoot proper is going to be reasonable to float in run off? If I recall from the 2018 event where we started from the N. Fork Blackfoot TH, there were some sketchy sections below the TH. But that was epic runoff year also.Nov 22, 2020 at 11:47 am #3685203Will BBPL Member
Ive paddled the NF Blackfoot twice, once at around 1200 CFS and once at like 450. 1200 is legit Class IV, my guess from that flow is that somewhere around 1500 or 1800 it gets a bit technically easier but the consequences of a swim continue to get worse. I can’t access the USGS data for the flow on the first day of the open in 2018, but from my memory of the hike up I think that whatever that flow was is probably the province of big water Class V kayakers.
I probably wouldn’t get on it alone above about 1800 or with a partner above 2500. For many other packrafters those cutoffs are likely to bet lower; I think it mostly depends on your comfort level in the boat. Of course we wont know the flows to that level of detail having spent the last 36 hours in the backcountry, but it’s a useful reference I think. If you’re dropping in from the North (and so can’t scout the river on the hike in) the availability of a wood report from the current season is also a factor in the decision matrix.
Below where the NF Blackfoot comes out of the mountains it looks like Class II, ditto the Blackfoot proper. So probably fine during runoff as long as you’re heads up about wood. But other folks who have paddled that stretch will probably have more info.Nov 22, 2020 at 12:01 pm #3685206
I concur with Will. The N Fk is pretty serious water at high levels up there.
At high water levels, even the N Fk below the TH and above Kleinschmidt flats is pushy and technical. I’ve had to paddle like mad to avoid being pushed by big waves into corners. An inexperienced boater would likely be a little scared even in this section if the river is running at 1500+.Nov 23, 2020 at 10:07 am #3685310
End of the road for the start.
Will encapsulated the range of possibilities well. 2018 was as big as I’ve seen the North Fork, and at least 1 in 5 years it never gets that big. That said, at any flow the crux 4 miles is not to be taken lightly. It’s been remarkably wood free for years now, but who knows when that will change.
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