Inside NFC IX #2 – New Features & Guaranteed Flows
The North Fork Championship kicks off in just one week, bringing some of the world’s best paddlers to the banks of the North Fork of the Payette River in Idaho. After the unfortunate cancelation in 2020, the Voorhees Family is excited to continue building the North Fork Championship for years to come. People are hearing water level rumors leading up to the event next week. What can you expect going into this year’s event on June 17-19th? Find out below!
As with everything in 2021, adapting and changing is inevitable. Rolling into NFC IX, there are a handful of changes on the horizon just one week away. There is a new rock (The Quaker) that rolled into the river due to an earthquake in Idaho that occurred in February, 2020.
« There is a new rock (The Quaker) that rolled into the river due to an earthquake«
Also, Idaho encountered one of the worst snowpack years to ever hit the Payette River drainage. NFC will still be able to provide the same dynamic that changed extreme racing as we know it. With the North Fork’s water being contained in two reservoirs upstream, it is vital and essential to local irrigation and agriculture.
« Beginning Monday, June 14 the North Fork will come up to 2,000 cfs »
That flow is essentially guaranteed each and every summer. The difference for 2021 is that the NF is yet to turn on… but don’t worry. Organizers have been in contact with the hydrologists, and beginning Monday, June 14 the North Fork will come up to 2,000 cfs (!!!). For those not familiar with the flows, the range throughout the NFC has been 1,700 (2016,2018) to 3,900 cfs (2017).
These flows will provide a great opportunity for both powerful and dynamic features, as well as unique locations to set the gates for the Main Event on Jacob’s Ladder! As mentioned above, “The Quaker” will prove to be an intriguing obstacle. Immediately following “Rodeo Hole”, an immensely powerful reactionary that frequently shoves paddlers into the right bank, makes the top section of the rapid even more intense.
« The Quaker turns into different beasts during different levels. »
The Quaker turns into different beasts during different levels. From 1,600-2,200 the rock has sufficient water going over the top, but a small pile coming back upstream at the lip, a sharp outcropping on the backside, and very retentive hole pack in a number of risks. The mid 2,000’s is where things turn Jake’s up to another level. Imagine the glorious boof on the Zam, but about ⅔’s the size with a big hole, and above the crux of the rapid (Rock Drop into Taffy Puller). We will have to wait and see when NFC is blessed with those flows.
Thankfully, the water levels will be sorted for 2021, crowds are back, and athletes get to show the rapid progression of the sport within the last two years. That’s what NFC is all about, right?