A long weekend paddling trip up to Nelson to hit a few rivers up there. A good amount of spring rain meant that everything was flowing and the Buller got to 3000 cumecs at TeKuha. I think we got our years worth of carnage in one weekend with Jo swimming for the first time in many years and myself getting a little bit wet for the first time in a while. Three cracked boats and one snapped paddle added to the losses.
We hit the Earthquake section of the Buller on the way up at 6pm and it is a 25min run at this flow.
Then we did the Upper Takaka at 20-30cumecs. The easy walk followed by not-so-easy 300m descent through bush meant that we were only on the river at 3pm. Quick read & run G4 got us to a steep section with stacked manky G5 rapids. The portage & a riverside boat repair meant that we ran out of daylight, so we ditched our gear walked out to the road and went home. The second day was quick, one snapped paddle-to-swim later and we were out.
The next day we flew into the Waingaro River. Even more unknown that the Takaka, we prepared ourselves for most eventualities. A fantastic day of 20km of G4 gorges and G3 boulder gardens was had by all, with one swim-to-loss-of-pride adding to the carnage of the weekend. I'd rate this run highly, better quality whitewater and on-par scenery to the Mokihinui.