Tatlow Creek is 100% classic BC class V. There's a brutal 4x4 road, heinous bushwacking, huge mandatory drops, and giant trees that you need to boof next to. You will also find crystal clear water that you can drink right out of the river, two 20 footers, two 30 footers, a 40 footer, and an absolutely spectacular gorge that you would be hard-pressed to beat for scenery. If you are up to the challenge, it will deliver and then some!
The hike-in is up a mountain, and then a brutal left turn and bushwack down to the top of the canyon.
Whistler local Ric Moxon near the top of the climb.
Kristofer Stursa from Austria above the first 30 footer of Tatlow.
This is the most intense moment of the run... Wall Drop! It's a 30 footer directly after a rappel portage. You cannot scout it and it looks like certain death when you come off the lip, but with a good left stroke, the pillow will deflect you every time.
This is the lip of the 40 footer. There's a ten footer above it, and you HAVE to make the right channel, falling left would be very very bad. I ran this one on beta as well, and somehow the local boys convinced me to run it first and shoot video from the bottom... how do I keep getting myself into this?!
The last majour drop of the run is directly below the 40 footer, and has a huge log jammed into it that has stood the test of time and massive floods. It is an optional boat toss and swim portage, but there is a good line in the drop as well. Fortunately we could scout this one!
After routing through the final kilometer or so of boogie class V, we boofed into the beautiful takeout pool and celebrated a successful descent of an all-time classic. Left to right... Ric Moxon, Sam Ricketts, Kristofer Stursa.
Tatlow is definitely an unforgettable experience if you are a class V paddler and ever get a chance to go. Do yourself a favour and put Southwest BC high on your list of kayaking destinations. Video coming soon...