So the Perihala festival promised us rain..and the rain came...

And it poured. All night long. On us. After being told the night before there was a serial killer "The greasy murderer" on the loose, we squeezed into a failed excuse of a tent to have the worst nights sleep of our lives. But we didn't die so we decided we couldn't complain all day and headed to the Goorook Oya, a promising bedrock run we had scouted the day before. From the road it looked amazing and we were really excited especially as it seemed not to have been run before. We had a get in and get out scouted, but decided to make the most of the rain and headed even further upstream so as not to miss anything while the river was high. 


Picture
Will drops into the gorge
This upper section is a hard one to catch due to a mini hydro scheme in construction removing water at the top. Clean drops and slides were the order of the day, but also a few siphons to avoid. This section also contained a fairly major portage round a beast of a double drop, which would be sweet to run if it wasn't for an unwelcome protruding rock slab at the top. Such a shame! That disappointment was short-lived as the river cleaned up from this point on.

Picture
Happy Birthday Tom!! Celebrating in style
Picture
The middle section got better and better as we descended. One big flair move was so clean that we thought we must have hit the best rapid on the run. 100 metres further down and unbelievably we were standing on top of a 7-8 metre fall with a clean lead in and pool, happy birthday Tom!! A tricky move to make went well for everyone, clean lines all round.

Picture
Will hits the line on "Birthday Falls"
This includes Tilak, a raft guide and safety kayaker at Borderlands who joined us for some “training.” We were extremely happy to have a Sri Lankan with us on a probable first descent (let us know if you’ve been there already!) Tilak styled all the big moves on this his third river, amazing stuff, the boy is brave. 

Picture
Tilac brings out the old school moves.
We met Mahesh with the truck at a bridge as the river gradient flattened and the valley began to open up, the end of a classic run in stunning surroundings. World class creeking.

Picture
Niamh lines up another big slide
Picture
Sean in the slot
There was enough time left in the day to run the last 5 kilometres of the river down to the confluence with the Mahawelli Oya, Sri Lanka’s longest river. This grade 3/4 section was totally worthwhile for its stunning village life surroundings, vibrant bird life and the open mouthed, wide eyed expressions on the faces of local bathers as the aliens paddled by, good times. We celebrate with a night on the town of Gompola for Tom’s birthday, drinks and food at the Cricket club, a throw back to colonial times. What a day! 

Picture
Tim
8/21/2011 05:31:42 am

Good to see that Will has finally learned to boof :-)
You found a new river for Borderlands yet?

Reply
Will
8/21/2011 11:50:57 am

Ha ha yeah. We have found a section on the Kotmale oya which could be rafted (another awesome river, coming soon) but alot of the stuff we have done so far is a bit creeky. but between that and the Sitawaka there are some options.

Reply
8/17/2012 04:48:54 am

Great blog, love the template.

Reply
8/29/2012 04:23:29 am

Anyone know where I can find more information?

Reply



Leave a Reply.