Early on Day 10 we ran Llamara Rapid, a beautiful Class V- rapid in a granite gorge, reminding me of rapids in the Sierra Nevada of California. It consisted of an upper Class IV section, a Class V drop and a Class IV+ section. All together, it was a long rapid. We arrived a little after 8 AM and began our scout. Kathy and I pushed off close to 9 AM, to run the first Class IV section, down to a must-catch eddy just short of the Class V drop.
Not far below the above photo, we dropped into a hole, got spun around and started to surf. It was a violent surf, and a loose oar handle smacked Kathy in the ribs, before it let us go. We then eddied-out close to where the cataraft is seen in the photo. Kathy was hurting, and I took the oars.
Then it was our turn. I tried to get left of the boulder, as instructed, but wasn’t making it. I, therefore, straightened out and did a bow pivot off the boulder, with my stern swinging to the right. Before I could get my stern all the way around, we dropped into a hole and started getting surfed! It was another violent one, and we high-sided for all we were worth. Kathy exclaimed: “Oh no, not again!”, to which I replied that it would let us go as soon as we filled with water, which is what happened. Then we got slung towards a cliff on river right, almost squashing Nate in his kayak. You know what I should have done, don’t you? I should have stayed to the right of the boulder, like CJ, just making sure to keep the boat straight as I ran whatever holes I encountered.
We continued to our Camp #10, on the right, at K.182
Tomorrow would end the Upper Gorge section, with our arrival at the town of Chagual. There we would receive two friends of Nate – Kym and Artie – who would fly in from Trujillo. Here is the link to the following post: