If It’s Tuesday It Must Be Tena

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Gearing up at the put in on the Upper Misahualli near Contundo.

If I could package up the Upper Misahualli (Mish for short) river near Tena, Ecuador and bring it home in my duffle I would.  The run just puts a smile on the face of anyone who paddles it.

Chris S., Mr. Dreamflows himself, on the Upper Mish.

Technical and continuous is how I would describe the Mish but you would also be amazed at how “doable” it is for a variety of skill levels. It’s the perfect training ground for developing and improving your creeking skills and a playground for those that want to keep those skills sharp.

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Reggie C. making the PA. boys proud on "Slideways".

There are access points sprinkled all along it’s length allowing you to pick and choose how hard and how long a run you want to do.

On Tuesday our two group drove over the Guacamayo mtns. from the Quijos river valley to find sunny skies and user friendly flows on the Mish. Putting in at Cotundo it wasn’t long before we started into the many fun slides and boofs linked by small read-and-run rock gardens.  It is easy to forget that you are essentially roadside because the rapids  hold your attention so well.

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Jon and Joe take a break on the Upper Misahualli between Cotundo and Retén.

From Contundo to the little town of Retén the run is class IV and takes around an hour for your first time through. Below Retén it is closer to IV- with take-outs at the footbridge at Calmita Yacu or further down at Archidona.  If you get an early start and the team is keen it’s not unheard to fit in more than one run in a day.

Mary buried deep in her work (and play).

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The group eddies out for some beta on an upcoming drop.

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Brian S. sets up for a rinse.

There’s only one thing to do after a good day of paddling one the Mish- cold beers at Manuel’s.

Sun- check, warm water- check, fun and technical- check, new skills learned-check, manuel's and cerveza- check.

Photos and content ©DeRiemer Adventure Kayaking all rights reserved.

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