This story featured in the July 2012 issue.

Photo: Darin McCoid

Darin McQuoid captured Ben Coleman on a rare descent of California's Slate Creek this April. "Ben was boat-scouting and just charging, catching eddies that are marginally even eddies," McQuoid said of the lush six-mile, Class V run that feeds the North Fork Yuba. "I think it was a second descent, I got my beta from Devin Knight who did it a few years ago, but there may have been a group in there prior—nobody knows much about the drainage." And that's about to change with the newly installed USGS gauge that tipped off McQuoid during the Sierras' short and sweet spring runoff: "I think the largest thing to revolutionize kayaking in the last 10 years is having river flows at our fingertips with online gauges." — DS