Dallas Downriver Club


Urban Paddle


Date: June 22nd, 2014 Time 9:00 AM Sponsor: DDRC
River: Elm Fork, Trinity River Trip Leader: Dale Harris
Reach: Sam Houston Trail Park to California Crossing Phone: 972-814-2633
Difficulty: Flat water / easy / this trip is good for beginners E-mail: president@down-river.com
Rendezvous: Sam Houston Trail Park Required Skills: Basic winter flat-water paddling and camping experience


Trip Description:

Meet at Sam Houston Trail Park at 9am.  We will run a couple of cars down to California Crossing (to shuttle drivers back) and be on the water by 10am

Gear requirements:

Basic items; life jacket, canoe or kayak, water, sunscreen, lawn chairs, and light jacket for the evening.


Lunch will be a picnic at California Crossing Park.

Back-up Plans: We’ll reschedule in case of high water.

Driving Directions:  From Dallas – go west on I-635. Get off at the Valley View Lane. Cross over Valley View and immediately turn right into Sam Houston Trail Park. 
From Plano, Carrollton, Richardson, get on the President George Bush Toll Rd get off at Valley View Lane. Go south on Valley View (right). Turn right at the access road to I-635W and then immediately into Sam Houston Trail Park.


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* International Scale of River Difficulty

Class I: Easy. Fast moving water with riffles and small waves. Few obstructions, all obvious and easily missed with little training. Risk to swimmers is slight, self-rescue is easy.

Class II: Novice. Straightforward rapids with wide, clear channels which are evident without scouting. Occasional maneuvering may be required, but rocks and medium sized waves are easily missed by trained paddlers. Swimmers are seldom injured and group assistance, while helpful, is seldom needed.

Class III: Intermediate. Rapids with moderate, irregular waves which may be difficult to avoid and which can swamp an open canoe. Complex maneuvers in fast current and good boat control in tight passages or around ledges are often required; large waves or strainers may be present but are easily avoided. Strong eddies and powerful current effects can be found, particularly on large-volume rivers. Scouting is advisable for inexperienced parties. Injuries while swimming are rare; self-rescue is usually easy but group assistance may be required to avoid long swims.

Class IV: Advanced. Intense, powerful but predictable rapids requiring precise boat handling in turbulent water. Depending on the character of the river, it may feature large, unavoidable waves and holes or constricted passages demanding fast maneuvers under pressure. A fast, reliable eddy turn may be needed to initiate maneuvers, scout rapids, or rest. Rapids may require "must" moves above dangerous hazards. Scouting is necessary the first time down. Risk of injury to swimmers is moderate to high, and water conditions may make self-rescue difficult. Group assistance for rescue is often essential but requires practiced skills. A strong eskimo roll is highly recommended.

Class V: Expert. Extremely long, obstructed, or very violent rapids which expose a paddler to above average endangerment. Drops may contain large, unavoidable waves and holes or steep, congested chutes with complex, demanding routes. Rapids may continue for long distances between pools, demanding a high level of fitness. What eddies exist may be small, turbulent, or difficult to reach. At the high end of the scale, several of these factors may be combined. Scouting is mandatory but often difficult. Swims are dangerous, and rescue is difficult even for experts. A very reliable eskimo roll, proper equipment, extensive experience, and practiced rescue skills are essential for survival.

Class VI: Extreme. One grade more difficult than Class V. These runs often exemplify the extremes of difficulty, unpredictability and danger. The consequences of errors are very severe and rescue may be impossible. For teams of experts only, at favorable water levels, after close personal inspection and taking all precautions. This class does not represent drops thought to be unrunnable, but may include rapids which are only occasionally run.

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Last updated June 8, 2014 12:07 PM