Tsangpo Dispatch—February 27, 2002

To portage or not to portage? Earlier in the expedition, the team scouts a rapid in the upper Tsangpo Gorge     Photo: Steve Fisher

Tsangpo River

To portage or not to portage? Earlier in the expedition, the team scouts a rapid in the upper Tsangpo Gorge

Via satellite phone the team reports that scouting the river upstream of the village of Luku is proving extremely challenging as a monstrous flood two years ago scoured the walls of this incredibly steep section of the lower gorge. There are now a number of new rapids that did not exist when the satellite photos they've been using for guidance were taken and access to the river is severely restricted. They will portage the rest of the way up to the confluence with the Po Tsangpo, scouting the river when possible, and will make a decision there as to which sections they will attempt to paddle.

Meanwhile, Ken Storm, Andrew Sheppard and a few others have proceeded with their trek into the innermost section of the Tsangpo Gorge, successfully reaching both Rainbow and Hidden Falls. They made contact with the paddling team, and reported that Sheppard had both stood on top of Rainbow falls and rappelled down to within five feet of Hidden Falls, where, in the words of expedition leader, Scott Lindgren, he "looked right down the throat" of the 100-foot-plus waterfall

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