Classing California Rivers
As you probably know, the Kings River is a class 3, which I think is one of the funnest classes to raft. It's not boring, but not BIG, or extremely technical. It's just FUN!! The classing of rivers goes from class 1 to class 6 Class 1 means not a rapid in sight all the way down the river. Class 2 has more rapids that are a little bit bigger than a ripple. Class 3 is fairly big and exciting. Class 4 is for older kids like 12 to adult. Class 5 is extremely technical and difficult. It is almost unrunable. Class 6 is unrunable for many people, but some people actually run this dangerous level, and usually love to brag about it later!
C.F.S. This is a way to measure the level of the river. C.F.S. stand for cubic feet per second. In a more understandable way, this means how a cubic foot of water flows past a measuring point in a second. 1995 had some big flows as high as 18,000 C.F.S. (BIG WATER!!) More likely you'll see flows between 1,000 to 5,000. !!!Remember, every flow has its fun features!!!
* New record for 1996. The river peaked at 35,000 C.F.S. in late May. It flooded parts of camp and ate both Kathleen and Tater's tents.
EDDYS. Eddys are usually found behind rocks or other obstacles where the water reverses itself and is pushed upstream. Most eddys are calm and quiet, and other eddys can be squirrelly and unpredictable. (Maybe you know an Eddy like this!?). Eddys are great places to stop the boat and wait for people, or to ambush them in a water fight.
CHANNEL. A Channel is the path of the river your guide chooses.
FORK. A Fork is where the river splits into at least two different channels. Guides have to choose which channel will be the best one to take. Sometimes the river splits into three or even four channels. (Which way to go?)
SOURCE. The source is where the river comes from. It may be a snowy mountain or a lake. The Kings River is fed by the Kings Canyon drainage. There are also dams upstream to block its runoff.
HOLE. A hole is when water rushes over a rock with such force it's pushed down and circulates back on itself.
SURFING. Surfing is something that your guide may do in a hole. You paddle up to the hole and your boat will be sucked into it, and you will begin surfing.
HAYSTACK. A haystack is a series of waves that occur at higher water. The Kings is known for its fun haystacks.