Kellam’s to Skinner’s
by Jim McLoone
Saturday, June 8, 2013
This is a trip that almost didn’t happen. Wednesday’s forecast had tropical storm Andrea dropping a lot of rain in the Delaware watershed with river level forecasts of 6+ feet. I feel that this is too high to run a safe trip. By Friday when we had to make a decision the forecast had been reduced to about 4.3 feet, a great fast level.
In the event Jim, Ken, Harris and Joe met at the take out, consolidated gear and left Joe’s car to run the afternoon shuttle. Lori, Paul, Brandon and Jan met us at the put in, Soaring Eagle Camp Grounds. Strangely enough we ran just about on time until Jim left his hat in the truck and had to go back for it.
We got on the river about 11:15 about a half hour later than planned. The sky was cloudy with no rain. The river level was 4.3 feet, about 3,000 CFS and 620 f. The river was moving quite fast.
The river was quiet with only 3 other boats seen on the entire trip.
We launched From Soaring Eagle Camp Grounds, mile 313 at 11:15 and reached our take out, Skinner’s Falls parking area, mile 296 about 4:15. After allowing for a half hour stop at Callicoon for lunch we travelled about 3.7 mph.
The trip started just above the 1890 suspension bridge that is the third oldest on the Delaware. Most of the trip passed through rural and pastoral residential areas. We spotted a couple of bald eagles and a huge nest among the pine trees.
At the end of the day we ran an immediate shuttle and had everyone loaded by 6pm. Four of us stopped to enjoy dinner at the Whistle Stop Café in Narrowsburg.
The statistical tally for our trip was about five hours of driving and five hours of paddling. I want to say thanks for how well the group hung together and waited at the bottom or each drop.