The Nationals at Warren, PA

-- Last Updated: May-03-05 4:33 PM EST --

As in 2003, this year the National will be held at Warren, Pennsylvania. Up to now, I won't have much time to get to know the river before the Marathons on Sunday. Likely, if I am lucky enough and not too tire of driving non-stop :D I will paddle the river on Friday afternoon.

Anyway, could anyone that has paddled the Venus before share some information about the river? I was told there is a Class II in some parts of the river, but I don't know were. Can anyone tell something about it? or any links?

Thanks in Advace,

USCA Nationals?
Are you talking about the USCA Nationals in August in Warren, PA? I was out there in 2003. There is a lot of current and a section of quick/white water (I’m not sure how to describe it since I mostly paddle flatwater). What will you be paddling? You should try to at least get on that section if you have a chance (it’s right by the refinery with a smokestack in the middle of the river). It looks difficult, but it was quite amazing to watch the C1 kids take the current in stride, so you can do it with the right line. I don’t believe I saw anyone go over in that spot. There’s some big eddies to steer clear of, and they had a spotter on a jet ski in 2003 in case of capsizes.

Yes, the USCA Nationals

– Last Updated: May-03-05 6:21 PM EST –

I'll be paddling my ski in the unlimited category.
My idea is to paddle that section before Sunday. However, up to now, I won't be able to leave for PA until Thursday 5:00 PM, so if I get some delay while driving, I may lose the afternoon of Friday, and paddling on Suturday, it is not the best option to be ok for Sunday.

Is the race a loop or 12 miles down river?
Do you know how far is the refinery from the start? and by the way, is there any put-in close to the refiery? because if I am late, I'll paddle only that section.

Thanks in advace, and sorry for so many questions :D

PS: (Sorry)
Is this the place near the refinery?

This paddler looks very perplex!



Yep, that looks like the swirly water. If you go on the USCA website, you may find an email address for Jim Decker, who is the host for this year’s Nationals. He should be able to tell you the nearest put in upstream of the refinery. You also might want to post on the USCA email group asking general impressions of the river. Mostly it is downriver with a few loops back upriver thrown in, but without doing a trial run, it would be nice to have others interpretations of the run.

Thanks for the info.
I spoke with Jim Decker a couple of weeks ago in order to know more about the event, and I am waiting for a package he’ll send me; however, I did not ask about the course because I did not have any specific question at that time. Now, I know what to ask.

Yes, I’ll post on the USCA yahoo group, and I’ll talk to John Edwards, as well, to obtain a bit more of information.

Thanks again,

You’re looking at about 7 miles from the tailwaters of Kinzua to the refinery at Warren. The very short, sweet, straightforward set of rapids is just as you pass the refinery. It seems as if there is water rushing at you from the right side of the river. Best to stay center stream as you pass the torch. Allegheny outfitters is just before the Glade bridge and you may be able to launch there. You could easily take out at Point Park at the end of Oak street in Warren. There are also take outs at Warren General Hospital and Betts Park. The rest of the river is pretty placid with a few riffles as you pass the islands. There is not another set of rapids until you get to Tionesta. Good luck at nationals. If I am not working that weekend I’ll be cheering you on. Laura

Thanks Laura,
Your inputs are helping me to understand the Venus. In a perfect world, I’ll have a couples of days to properly know the river, but we don’t live in a perfect world :smiley:

I am using satellite pictures to visualize the place. I found what looks like a set of rapids between Althon and Cobham by the Allegheny National Forest. Is it the place?

Thanks a lot

Althom and Cobham are closer to Tidioute. The river runs along the national forest from just below Irvine towards Tionesta. There are short sets of rapids just as you are coming into Warren behind United Refinery. There is anothe set of rapids, even shorter but much more fun (we sometimes stop and walk back upstream so we can run them a second time) just before you get to the bridge in Tionesta. The next and final set of rapids on the Allegheny is just before the bridge in Oil City. I have seen them from the car. I have never paddled below Tionesta. It is on my to do list though. I paddle quite frequently between Kinzua and Tionesta. I am working on getting a few folks together for this weekend. Will try and get a few pics of the rapids and try (with a little help from my daughter) to post them here for you.

Finally, I got it!

– Last Updated: May-06-05 10:36 AM EST –

When you mention United Refinery, I looked for its address in the web, and then, I used the aerial view to localized the place.
Therefore, for what I am seeing now, the race should start close to the Allegheny Reservoir, and then, it goes down river up to warren with a couples of loops around the islands as Pam said. About 7/8 miles (depend on the loops), I will encounter United Refinery and the set of little rapids.

Thanks a lot because I was looking too far down river. The rapids closer to Althom and Cobham looks in the satellite photos way bigger than a simple swirly water, so I was a bit confused.


PS: If during the Sunday Marathon, you see someone swimming behind a surfski, that would be me :D:D