Running the River Regret
It’s an easy put-in,
but Bull Sluice to Shoulder Bone
is a run of holes that might claim you.
If the Sluice doesn’t kill you, it’ll shoot you
toward the worst of it; Section IV,
heaven and hell in a single pour.
A swift thread through Screaming Left Turn
and the Rock Jumble dumps you
into Sutton’s Hole, but
don’t be lulled by the sudden still,
for you’re quickly on to Woodall Shoals.
If luck’s on your high side, you’ll find
the sneak route to the right, around
Woodall Hole, a Class VI keeper,
the deadliest lick on the river.
If you’re still with us, don’t get comfortable, friend,
‘cause there’s plenty of hell yet to pay.
Shoals to Raven Chute, the river twists on
to Camp Creek high water takeout, where it gives a little,
offers you one last chance for exodus
before any one of the Five Falls takes you.
Entrance to First Fall is a diagonal bony.
A hundred fast yards to Corkscrew,
a boil of surging cross currents,
then Crack-in-the Rock, a tight sieve
that only passes water.
A lightening tongue flushes you
through to Jawbone and on to the
Sock’em Dog pour over, a ravenous,
seven-foot vertical drop into Dead Man’s Pool,
and one more sinker to go.
After Five Falls, Shoulder Bone
doesn’t look like much, but don’t you let up
till you flatten out and begin to drift
toward the lake. Once you’ve made
Shoulder Bone, nothing but riffles
here on in, and you can rest
assured, you’ve steered
your way clear of the keeper.