Austria is a beautiful country but there some areas which a more beautiful. One of these areas is Ost-Tirol esp. the Defereggen valley. It is surrounded by the national park Hohe Tauern and offers some remote whitewater in a narrow gorge on the waterfall run as well as roadside runs on the standard and tunnel section.
After meeting up with Anton and Markus we headed to the put-in of the standard section to run it combined with the tunnel section. We had a juicy flow around 60 cm with some pretty holes and cool lines. None of us knew this section which makes a run always something special.

Anton in one of the first rapids

There was some wood in the creek, so we had to be on guard not to get in a nasty situation. The tunnel section starts with some rapids you can run by leapfrogging from one eddy to the next. When you can see the road-bridge you should stop for some scouting. In your desired line there is a tree sticking...then there are two other lines, one of them a chicken line, the other one in the main current. For the second choice you need to use a backwash to slow down for not crashing into the tree. That's the line we choose. I had a very smooth run and caught a cool entrance boof.
Me in the tree rapid
After that tricky part there's a fun slide and a couple of meters of easier whitewater before the creek picks up gradient again. We reached the key rapid, 300m of continuous grade IV+ whitewater (at this level). It seems the rapid is not too old. Most of the rocks are crumbly and sharp edged. A swim or roll would definitively have some bloody consequences. Nevertheless me and Anton decided to run it. Both of us caught a good line and managed the difficulties without having any troubles.
Me in the key rapid
The day after the level dropped and we decided to run the waterfall section. It is a remote gorge with some really cool drops. We had a pretty low level but it was quiete a good run. After some bony first two kilometers the walls narrowed and it was time to scout the first drop. It's a absolute fun drop with a nasty backwash in the approach and an auto-boof table at the fall. Anton started, me and Markus. And then you're in...in the gorge. It is such a terrific piece of nature, unbelievable.
Me on Defereggenbach
The second drop is a 20 footer with a nice cross current and a sticky eddy in the approach line. We ran the same order like the first drop but Anton had to run twice, because I messed up with Anton's camera and didn't shot his first run....second run double fun ;-)
Anton's second run
After we finished up at Defereggenbach we wanted to do a quick afternoon run on Isel river. It a glacier sourced river which usually has high flows on summer afternoons...and yes we did have a high flow. Markus paddled the section once before, so we thought it would become a turbo mission. But after the first bends Markus confessed he couldn't remember one damn thing about this river :-o
Maybe the trick left-right combo ;-)
It was a fun. Markus always told something about a left-right combination with massive holes...we're still looking for it. If anyone find's it give us a call. After all it was an awesome weekend with the guys. Here's a short edit Anton made. Enjoy!

Later.
Max

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