Friday, July 11, 2008

Lower Myrkdalselvi - Norway

Daniele Tira critically amassing the abundant flow on the Lower Myrkdalselvi, Norway

Andy Phillips - Karma Cow 2 at normal Flow. May 2010

Creek ninjas unite for another take on Voss's classic whitewater scene. In Norway there are two types of heart pumping Grandiosas - the 10 dollar fatty pizzas that keep the budget creeker nourished while on tour, and the supersized triple combos complementing the full-course stuntman buffet known as the Lower Myrkdalselvi.

Always waiting for devotees come early/mid summer, the Myrkdal is the savvy creeker's bread and butter in Voss. A large catchment in a wet scandic wonderland, a valuable internet gauge, a 30 minute drive to the show.... and there you are - front row seat with a whole lot about to go down.

Michele Ramazza skips the previews when at the show - entry boof.

With sunshine and perfect flow for the taking as we finally had the other day, it was no wonder myself and the Italian Paparazzi had their wide angles exposed. Fortunately the Michele/Daniele duo also brought their craving to run-the-shit with them. With hardly an appetizer into the run the Myrkdal cooks up the first 3-course triple slide, which at high flows is easy on the eyes but hard on the stomach.

Main dish triple slide - pumping @ 20 cms+

After the triple slide comes a short break before leading into the second triple whammy. Here the Myrkdal serves up another well packaged drop times three. Here you're looking for a center right on 1, either way on 2 and righty boof on 3.

Triple D - second set

....and then mo'

Two more slides high on the satisfacto-meter await just downstream before you're faced with an easy portage around the Myrkdal's biggest drop. A beautiful fossen typicaly found in Norway's Hordaland region. Skirt the grass pasture on river right and look for the well worn trail back down to the river.

Immediatley below the portage awaits one of the nicest boof to slide combos anywhere. High water forms an easy line down the left but almost any line off the top will go and have you grinning at the bottom.

From start to finish the Lower Myrkdalselva hardly takes a break in between the whitewater that the run is so famous for. The final drop before the takeout is less of a dice roll than most consider, however the hole at the bottom will always be ready to turn you inside out on the way through. Overall a kavu day over here in Voss with team Italia and the sunshine.

Ramazza - last dose before takeout

There are mentions of 15cms being enough but the river certainly goes with much more. Portaging the triple slide at certain flows on river right can be a wise choice and hardly detracts from the overall Myrkdal experience. Myrkdal guage can be found here

View Myrkdalselva (IV-V) in a larger map