Saturday, May 05, 2007

The Widow Maker

What's that? You have not heard of the Widow Maker on the Kananaskis River in Kananaskis Country of Southern Alberta. The Kananaskis River is a crystal clear, glacial fed class II river, with class III features at a location called Canoe Meadows. Canoe Meadows and the Widow Maker are located just off of Highway 40 approximately 7 kilometers south of Highway 1. I have been by here numerous times and today I was on my way south on Highway 40 for some Arctic Grayling fishing at Wedge Pond when I decided to check out the action on my way by.

I pulled into the parking lot at Canoe Meadows and one of the guys said they were on their way up the road to the Widow Maker. This series of photos I shot of the guys and gals as they attempted to conquer this rush of water called the Widow Maker.

As you can see from my captures it is no easy task taming this raging torrent of water as it rushes through this narrow chute.

I suspect it is a requirement that your skills of righting yourself when you end up top side down under the water are up to snuff. For sure you want to be sure your mouth is shut and that you are not inhaling part of the Kananaskis River.

The best time of the year for these activities on the Kananaskis River, are in the spring when there is water from snow melt and also from rainfall such as the rains that we have experienced lately that make for great kayaking and rafting beginning at the Widow Maker and ending 4 kilometers downstream at Canoe Meadows.

A wet suit is a necessary requirement needless to say or you would become a part of the glacial fed Kananaskis River in short order

The water flow and the water level on the river are controlled by raising or lowering water being released at the Barrier Lake Dam located 4 kilometers upstream.

I arrived just in time to check out who amongst the guys and gals about to raft the river had the jam to jump off the overhanging rock that overlooks the Widow Maker. That's my new friend AJ giving it a go.

After everyone was good and wet, the rafts were put in up stream of the Widow Maker, and with everyone aboard they departed for Canoe Meadows. One last capture as these rafters give it all their worth through the Widow Maker. Gotta love it.

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