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Joy and Exuberance on the South Fork of the Kings

Posted: 06.28.2012 by Laura Farrell

Because I think Taylor Cavin is one of the funnier people I know (and his description so well put), I am going to let his post introduce this blog...

"At 4pm on Saturday, June 16th an intrepid group of swash-buckling crusaders, loaded their safety gear, fishing tackle, and ukuleles into their kayaks and embarked upon an episode of "Myth Busters" to de-bunk the fables of the South Kings. What they found (at 800 cfs at Roger's Crossing) was a terrific, spectacularly scenic boof stork sanctuary through a deep, tight canyon with all rapids scoutable, portageable, and runnable" - Taylor Cavin

Taylor and his breakfast catch
What Taylor is referring to here is our recent trip to the South Kings River and specifically a section commonly referred to as "Fear and Loathing."  The guide book makes it sound horrible with class six unportageable, unscoutable and potentially unrunnable rapids. The other very limited beta out there does not make it sound much better. And the name alone doesn't exactly make you expect good things.

Surprisingly, what we found deep in that canyon was quite the opposite of fear and loathing. What we found was joy and exuberance.

After making it through the canyon with good lines and high spirits, the walls opened up and we hit the confluence of the Middle Fork of the Kings. This meant it was time to lifestyle. We quickly found a camp spot and enjoyed the final moments of the day as the sun set in Sequoia National Park.

The next morning we paddled out on the Garlic Falls section of the Kings which at our flow was filled with great class rapids and epic granite scenery all the way to the takeout.

I'll wrap this up with another quote (and response to Taylor's comment on from another one of my favorite burl chargers...

"Never stop exploring, questioning, and charging what you see as magnificent." -Will Pruett