A dot of orange beneath an art-deco masterpiece.
September 3, 2014 2:48 PM   Subscribe

Halfway through my three-week, 417-mile journey down the “most endangered” river in America, the water began flowing backward and the mud started talking. It spoke in baritone gurgles, like Barry White trapped in a bong. You know what this is, John? No, Barry White mud. This is QUICKSAND.
posted by lonefrontranger (10 comments total) 30 users marked this as a favorite

Darin McQuoid, who plays a part in this adventure, is an excellent whitewater kayaker and photographer. Some of his shots of the same watershed:

South Fork of the San Joaquin "Lower" V-V+

North Fork San Joaquin V-V+

North Fork of the San Joaquin, Lower IV-V+

Devil's Postpile of the Middle Fork San Joaquin

San Joaquin -Tied for First-
posted by craven_morhead at 3:10 PM on September 3 [2 favorites]

Thanks, I have my evening's reading cut out for me!
posted by beagle at 3:26 PM on September 3

It is very sad what we've done to this planet in general and California in particular.
posted by entropicamericana at 3:31 PM on September 3 [2 favorites]

Just took a break from reading the link to say:
Wow, great read!
posted by Stonestock Relentless at 4:05 PM on September 3 [2 favorites]

hardkore kayakyin' bro

srsly harcore
posted by lalochezia at 4:11 PM on September 3

It is very sad what we've done to this planet in general and California in particular.

True, but the recent dam removal thread does give me some hope.
posted by Melismata at 4:23 PM on September 3 [1 favorite]

I don't think I've ever said this on Metafilter before, but this should be sidebared. Everyone in America should read this. Thank you so much for posting it.
posted by anastasiav at 5:42 PM on September 3 [1 favorite]

I know, right?? I literally could NOT BELIEVE I found this on, of all places, CNN. I had to literally drag myself away from it to get to work this morning. It's also 3rd of a series so I'm eager to see what else is on tap.

Thanks so much for posting the kayaking info craven_morhead; I knew someone here would come through on that.

I am impressed that a self-described "doughy suburbanite journalist" managed to survive this trip, let alone complete it. Sea kayaking in those conditions is super scary, and you do not fuck with the desert around Fresno in the middle of summer.
posted by lonefrontranger at 6:28 PM on September 3

if anyone else wants more in-depth reading on the rest of the covered topics, including what looks to be considerable expansion on the San Joaquin River issues, here is the CNN link to their "Change The List" project.
posted by lonefrontranger at 8:28 PM on September 3

Thanks for posting this. I grew up in Stockton and remember catching crawdads in Mosher Slough, which isn't far from the San Joaquin River, and their waters meet in the delta west of town. The author does a great job capturing a sense of the place.
posted by exogenous at 7:33 AM on September 4

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