When It Rains, It Pours… and We Go Kayaking

It has been a torrential downpour in Whatcom County over the past week and the rivers are flowing high with turbulent water, a white water kayaker’s dream. With a lack of precipitation this winter, there have been few pow days at Mt. Baker and even fewer high water laps on the North Fork of the Nooksack River in Glacier, WA. I have been incredibly blessed to spend the last four years at Mt. Baker endlessly spoiled with 10+ inch pow days; however, this year I learned to appreciate every pow day, taking nothing for granted.

Over the Falls. Photo by Christiane Thomas
Over the Falls. Photo by Christiane Thomas

It has been a rough winter for kayakers as well. I have spent a great deal of time this winter scraping the bottom of my kayak over the granite boulders that create the turbulent Class 4+ rapids of the Horseshoe Bend section on the North Fork of the Nooksack River.

Over the past few months I have also had my eye on Whatcom Creek in Whatcom Falls Park in Bellingham, WA. Unfortunately, the creek is choked full of wood making the creek difficult to navigate and potentially dangerous. I have particularly been intrigued by the 20-foot high waterfall on the creek about a half mile east of Woburn Street.

After carefully scouting the section of river, I decided to fire it up on Friday. Access to the top of the waterfall was gained via a vigorous battle with blackberry bushes, overgrown brush, and steep muddy slopes. The falls went well and I was able to boof over a log, slide under a fallen tree, and successfully make my way down the rest of the creek to the bridge in several minutes. I arrived at the bridge grinning from ear to ear; that was awesome!

Here’s to achieving new goals this year – go after it and make it happen!

 Adventures_NW_Kayaking_Whatcom_Creek-Alicia Lycan grew up in the Pacific Northwest and has developed an irreverent passion for the outdoors, particularly skiing and kayaking. Relatively new to kayaking, she couldn’t be more content with the places paddling has taken her, nor more excited for the adventures that await in the future. She is a student at Western Washington University and a whitewater raft guide in Leavenworth, WA. Follow her adventures at shegoesadventures.wordpress.com

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