The North Face Adventure Grant exists to aid adventurers in Australia and New Zealand in achieving their dream expeditions. After two days of scouting the Karangarua River, Jordan Searle and his team completed the First Descent from Christmas Hut to Cassel Flat and continued through to the Tasman Sea. Jordan Searle was the recipient for The North Face Adventure Grant 2015.

FEATURE PHOTOS: David Bain

Jordan Searle was joined by Ari Walker, David Bain, and Barny Young on a mission to complete the first descent of the Karangarua River on New Zealand’s West Coast. The expedition team also included Taylor Weston who supplied track support and James Scott, helicopter pilot.

Before Jordan and the team attempted to paddle the first source to sea descent of the Karangarua River, David Bain and Jordan flew into Christmas Hut at the headwaters for a scouting mission. From there, they hiked down the river to inspect the inner sections of the gorges to see if they were passable and what gear and track support would be required to make this possible.

Day one took them from Christmas Hut to Lame Duck Hut and was a moderately long day of scouting as it isn’t a long distance but there is one deep canyon to scout. Day two was an even bigger day of scouting, with a longer distance to cover and an even less accessible canyon to scout, eventually taking them to Cassel Flat Hut.

Once the scouting was complete, the expedition team set off on Friday December 4, and completed the First Descent on Monday December 7, 2015. Of the expedition, Jordan Searle says:

The First Descent of the Karangarua River from its source was simply incredible. It encompassed a breath-taking river valley, full on white-water, technical portaging and smiles for days. It is great to have this trip behind me as I have been eyeing it up for years now. I couldn’t have asked for a better team to be on the river with and would like to thank Taylor Weston, my good friend, for his fundamental role of track support.

While the class VI – V section below Cassel Flat had been kayaked before, the upper 17km was a First Descent from Christmas Hut to Cassel Flat. Stay tuned for the full report from the expedition to come, and the feature story in Australian Geographic Outdoor.

DAVID BAIN'S TEAM SELFIE WITH JORDAN SEARLE, BARNY YOUNG AND ARI WALKER

DAVID BAIN’S TEAM SELFIE WITH JORDAN SEARLE, BARNY YOUNG AND ARI WALKER

 

The North Face extends a massive congratulations to the team for executing their plans, and completing the Frist Descent of the Karangarua River. The North Face Adventure Grant exists to aid adventurers in Australia and New Zealand in achieving their dream expeditions. We are currently accepting applications for 2016 expeditions.

THE NORTH FACE ADVENTURE GRANT 2016
Presented by AG Outdoor

The North Face Adventure Grant is now open, with one week left to apply for 2016 expeditions. Apply now.

The grant recipient recieves:

  • $5000 grant from The North Face
  • $3000 AG Outdoor Grant
  • $2000 worth of The North Face gear

We are looking at applicants from a wide range of areas including rock climbing, trekking, alpine climbing, extreme endurance pursuits, skiing, snowboarding, B.A.S.E. jumping, kayaking and paragliding, just to name a few. We’re not only looking for elite athletes, the grant is designed to assist adventurers of all levels to step up and make their adventure aspirations a reality.

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