Hucking a Duo of 100-foot Waterfalls
“I’ve always loved the sensation of falling,” Aniol Serrasolses told Canoe & Kayak magazine in 2012, after making the first (and only) descent of the highly technical 100-foot Salto de la Puma waterfall in Chile. “I love it when you commit, get in your boat, paddle toward the drop, and reach the point where there’s no turning back. Then you’re flying and nothing else in the world matters — everything happens fast, but the two or three seconds in the air are the most incredible sensation I’ve ever felt.” A successful run, like Serrasolses’s, requires not only the “huck,” where the kayaker drops over the waterfall, but also the landing, which he needs to not get ejected from his boat or knocked out in the process.
The current world record belongs to Tyler Bradt, 28, who astonished people in 2009 when he plunged over 189-foot Palouse Falls in Washington. The feat was hair-raising: Palouse is 17 feet higher than Niagara. No one else has come close to attempting a waterfall of that size. That’s not for a lack of waterfalls that have yet to be dropped.
So which one is next? Many have their eyes on Rattlesnake Creek, a body of water in southernmost Washington that plunges into a box canyon creating a nearly 100-foot waterfall known as Rattlesnake Falls that leads to an equally spectacular second waterfall called Rattlesnake Falls Lower. “Running them back-to-back would be monstrous in this age of big waterfall running,” says local kayaker Max Blackburn. He even went there with Tyler Bradt, who allegedly got in his boat twice at the lip of the first waterfall, only to call it off both times.
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