Pusu NO River, Ecuador
We had a group of hard chargers from Durango, CO and Bend, OR last week. These boyz weren't F-ing around. They partied hard and kayaked even harder! Every night we were convinced that at least 1 or 2 wouldn't be able to boat in the morning; but they always turned up to breakfast bright-eyed and bushy-tailed (oh, well, at least they always showed up) ready to paddle.
Some of the guys had been to Ecuador before and for others it was their first time to South America. All of them took full advantage of exploring a new place with a new culture and new rivers. It was really fun to have a group so completely stoked to be in a new place.
Having seen some videos online, the crew was super stoked to check out the Pusuno River near Tena. We were a bit skeptical because the Pusuno is one the most difficult rivers to catch at a proper flow. It's super finicky, and, while it's usually too low to run, it gets way too high quite easily as well. The river has actually been nicknamed the Rio Pusu NO because of how often groups get skunked up there. But we were also really excited because it's very rare to get a group who wants to go to this river.
So we thought we'd better give it a whirl! We figured if it was too low, we could always boat the lead in drops, run the falls and then, using a little rope work, get back up and hike back to the car.
Some overnight rain in Tena left everyone with high hopes of a good level on the Pusuno. As we drove there, the side creeks coming from a similar drainage looked promising...then some of them looked a little too promising! We arrived to the Pusuno to find it at an unfriendly high level.
So, after a few minutes of looking at the 1st drop, then looking around for eddies, and eventually deciding that it just wasn't good to go, we went for a nice jungle hike with Tarquino, checked out the run, the falls, the jungle, saw a few monkeys and called it a day.
We headed back to the Quijos Valley for a run down the Cheesehouse section, some playboating, beer and tequila drinking around the lodge and then a morning at the hot springs before heading back to Quito.
Cruise, Joel, and Danny were off to Montanita to do some surfing and to try to re-live the movie Point Break. I hear the local surfers are quite territorial out there! But, if anyone could handle them, it's these 3.
Dave, Luke and Dan headed back to their homes, hopefully a little better prepared to face the winter after one last romp in the tropical paradise of Ecuador.