14 August: boating the Upper Willapa
August 23, 2016 by Tangly Cottage
Sunday, 14 August 2016
Allan’s boating excursion
The last time I was on the Willapa river my goal was to find the most shallow part that could be paddled. I had been advised it was just over 2 miles up from the Wilson Creek launch .
Just a couple more miles upstream!
With a slight tailwind, here I am back at the bridge 2 miles upstream from her dock.
This resulted in a formula: GIVEN: (glass half fullism + pity (ghf+p)) equals a multiplying factor of 2.25, AND: ( a stranger’s given distance (sgd) x (ghf+p)) equals the ACTUAL DISTANCE (ad), The formula looks like: (sgd) x (ghf+p) = (ad).
Substitute the given values: (“2 miles” x 2.25) = 4.5 miles actual distance.
This was proven true today, twice.
Into new territory. The wind was predicted to be 15 mph and carry me right upstream. It wasn’t blowing yet
The river is salty on its incoming tide which might explain this sharp high tide vegetation line.
Lots of attractively planted pilings. I bumped over a few underwater which must be even more a thrill with an outboard engine.
The second bridge. This is about the upper limit for small fishing boats according to LeeRoy’s Ramblings , an excellent local fishing blog.
A typical North American small fishing boat.
Wow, what a destination!
This is a “no tickets’n turnstiles” budget water park featuring a unique high dive with tidal adjustable height.
Also featured is a water swing plus a return ramp up the beach. (More about this river’s beaches later)
The locally sourced return ramp
Many hours of work involved, and such an accomplishment! The old time artistic signature above and the modern era disclaimer below.
This was worth paddling by many times as the river kept pushing me downstream while I studied and imagined this place in use.
A not so quality picture of a couple as they quickly kayaked downstream. “Just another 3/4 mile.” they said.
Applying the earlier formula again, briefly, ((2.25) x “(3/4) miles)” equals just under 1.75 miles to go. I measured it….
Looked like a tree wanting its picture to be taken.
…and with a slight round-off error factoring their downstream exuberance…
Upstream at the ‘end of the line.’
…it was actually 1.5 miles upstream from the kayakers’ friendly ( ghf +p ) advice and 4.5 miles from the dock near the launch.
Shallow rock bed all the way across. Time to wade like an explorer or turn around.
Banging into pilings and shallows resulted in a rod becoming bent and a flipper stopped moving. One flipper would equal only half speed so I took a few minutes to replace it. I can straighten the damaged rod later.
Headed back downstream against a wind.
An attractive farmhouse with a beach.
Returning under the first bridge with a wet lens.
Past the cute ‘Lany Bug’ again. It just called for another photograph.
Last visit I thought this ramp only needed a replacement dock. Now I think the bank washed away from underneath it too.
Adjacent to the ramp the riverbank looks scrubbed.
Alert boaters must become shorter than this stick.
I learned that when a ski boat is being towed the towed person gets soaked.
Back at the launch I installed the other pontoon and headed into the brisk wind downstream. I intended to to paddle down and sail back.
A fine house and a riverfront fishing camp.
A turret, skylight, fireplace and style.
The beginning of a very long row of pilings.
Tightly spaced and extending around the bend.
The head wind still blowing should make for a quick trip back.
The apparent source of the pilings, an old mill.
Remember the water park’s beach ramp? This is the typical river beach. I learned to wear knee boots, they built a ramp.
Part of a old belt system I think
It’s next to the burned and ruined dock
It looks like a small cedar shake operation still continues.
Where’s the wind?
Getting a scrub before boarding
A house with a fine view while the trees slowly grow back.
Calm, windless water. It was still a faster trip upstream against the current than downstream against the wind.
A shy deer from Raymond.
Professional model deer from Raymond
A colorful rail on what looked like a day care center.
12.3 miles with about 20% of the time not moving.
Piecing together about three trips, I’ve now paddled the Willapa river end to end except for the swampy bits on the upper left of the map near Raymond.