Hi All,

Does anyone have a good source (Book, article or person to contact) for recounting the history of river running in Hell's Canyon before the dams?

I have Welch, Conley and Dimock's great recounting of Edith Cleg with Holmstrom and co going UP Hell's Canyon in 1939, but as with rivers everywhere, there were others going the other way. I see some small boats made the cruise downstream a few months after Clegg... who was in there in the 1800's and early 1900's?

Thank you in advance, Tom


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Steve Schaefers has some information from early Prince Helfrich records of runs in Hells Canyon. He has just set up his account here on WBP to be able to contact you.  That is going to be a real trove of great information. 

Hi Randy and Steve, Steve, pleased to meet you. I have the recountings of the SHOSHONE (1871-1872) and the NORMA (what a hoot that was) in 1895, but who was cruising through in small boats? There were a number of miners, surveyors and explorers who made the run in canoes, scow's and other types of boats. Do you have a favorite story or two about those adventures? Just like other rivers of similar flow and size, big water around 100K cfs offered different challenges to the river during spring runoff verses the 10Kcfsn either side of that. By the end of 1945, how many women do you think had cruised through Hell's Canyon? And who was the first woman to pilot her own boat through Hell's? Thank you in advance, Tom

The Doing of the Thing. The Brief, Brilliant White Water Carer of Buzz Holmstrom

Vince Welsh 

It is a good read, I have to dig out my copy and read it again. 


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