Bell Rapid

Bell quad_02

Bell quad_01

This relatively unknown rapid is only paddled on the Non-Stop Dusi and 50 Miler. It is just over a kilometer past the Saddles Portage take-out and 500m before the large bend in the river to the left. You should avoid shooting Bell right of the island unless you know exactly where to go as it is much steeper and more risky than the left.

The trickiest part of Bell is actually knwing where it is. The maze of channels leading to Bell make it hard to get your bearings. Fortunately one of the locals has built a white concrete wall to help us, so look out for this as your key land mark on the right bank directly opposite Bell Rapid.

bell landmark2016


Bell is also the last significant drop before the Duzi does a sharp turn to the left. There is also a distinct large sloping rock on the left bank's waters edge in line with the drop off.

At a meduim level, the left side of the island has 3 channels over the drop with most the water going down the one on the right. If the river is very full take the extreme left channel all the way down. You can also stay left in low water if you are prepared to slide and scrape down the ledges.

bell intro1

bell approach2016

bell overview2016

bell downstream2016

In a medium or low level head from the left bank at a 45 degree angle towards the bushy island and drop down the right hand channel, hugging the inside bend, i.e. keeping left down the chute (see video as well). The image below shows the view from the top. Note the tongue on the left and rocky shelf on the right.

bell right2016

After the drop, follow the flow as close to the island as possible in order to cross over to the deeper channel that merges from right of the island. This will entail taking a small gap between the end of the island and the boulder on the left. There are other lines after the drop that will get you through, but they are quite technical so think fast and use your best steering skills!

If you are river right when you get to Bell, which is quite possible with all the channels and islands leading up to it, it will look like the image below. No need to panic, just tuck in tight around the point of the island and straighten out quickly into the current that merges from the other side. 

bell intro3

If you wish to portage Bell you can do so on either side however the right bank is quicker and easier, assuming of course you are not too far committed down the left. There is a path that follows the river on the right. The take-out however is quite quite messy being steep, deep and cluttered with floating vegetation.

The take-out for Non-Stop Dusi is just 500m ahead, before the river bends sharply to the left.


Medium Water Level