Distance: 9.0 km.
|Average Grade: 7 m/km|
|Peak Grade: 15 m/km|
|Difficulty: Grade 3.|
|Paddling Time: 2-4 hours.|
|Entry Point: The first bridge on Esperance River Road (Grid ref. DN 928 058).
|Exit Point: The Huon Highway (A6) bridge at Raminea (Grid ref. DN 975 023).|
|Water Level: The river needs recent local rain to run. Check the DPIPWE Water Portal https://portal.wrt.tas.gov.au/Data/Map/ site 7200-1 Esperance at Dover WS.
|Tasmap: 1:100 000 Huon (Land Tenure Index Series).|
|Shuttle: Via Esperance River Road. 10 mins drive.
|General Description: The river is similar to the Picton but a step up in difficulty. There are some well defined rocky drops which are grade 4 at high water.
The first big rapid, about 1/2 way, is obvious from above. Start right but head left past river centre to avoid a well hidden pour-over and recirculating stopper which likes to claim victims.
The next big rapid is Isa’s Staircase – at 45 cumecs this builds to a chunky hard grade 3 to easy grade 4 rapid with some recirculating stoppers that can cause some swims. Start hard left and then head right above the tree covered island in the middle and then feel your way down.
From here to the finish are a couple of continuous grade 2-3 rapids until the pumping station on the right. The river is virtually flat from here to the finish.
Carl Mason – Isas Staircase at 45 Cumecs approx