Hey Paddling for Parkinson’s followers,
Apparently there is cell phone service where he is, near Craig, Mt, so I was able to talk with Joe for longer than normal. He is in great spirits after the first few days, with his body starting to be accustomed to the 8 hours of paddling a day. I don’t think the map above is up to date with where he currently is as he portaged Holter Dam earlier in the day. Tonight he pitched his camp at Prewett Creek campsite, which he estimates is 60 miles upstream from Great Falls, MT.
As for the day of paddling, he said it went well. Joe was up early on the river and encountered his largest waves yet, 3 ft on the south end of Holter Lake. At this point, Joe decided to go “suns out, guns out and kicked the mp3 player to max” as he attacked the waves. He said Holter Lake went great, except going shirtless ended up doing some damage as he is now “über burned.” Joe had two portages today, one by himself. The other he had the help of Tim, the Dam manager, who told him that they were going to start cutting back flow on the river. Therefore, Joe is trying to get as much time on the river right now because the speed will start to slow down soon.
He also let me in on a few intricate details of the portage, with the main point being: putting your head in the kayak for the portage is “no bueno” as that is where is sweaty lower half is, trapped in neoprene for the whole day. Leave it to Joe to come up with that description.
Tomorrow Joe is going to try and push past Ulm, but that is with weather permitting. The weather was fairly good for most of the day, but it looks as if that is changing with highs in the 40’s for the weekend with rain and snow. He is pretty confident the weather won’t be too bad as he’d rather be paddling in the rain/snow then sitting in a damp tent.