KempuHoLe River

Description:

The river runs in the Western Ghats of Karnataka. It loses a lot of gradient (~800m) in a span of about 150km before it meets the ocean. The first 700m is lost within 20km. This is a serious and continuous class IV (V) river.

Getting there:


On the Bangalore-Mangalore highway (NH 48), after Sakleshpur the ghat road starts. About 30km after Sakleshpur you can find a dam on the river. The river runs along the highway for about 20 km and then turns south.


Stretch 1:

From the Kempu Hole Dam project until Gundya

Put in:

About 0.5-1km after the dam, after the river gets back its water. There are several places to put in. Some portage will be necessary.

Take out:

Again several options. During this report it has been about 8kms downstream before a big class IV+ (V) rapid (Sharp and evident U turn of the river).An ideal take out can be at the Gundya bridge.

Distance on river:

About 12 kms till the bridge.

Difficulty:

class III+, IV+ (V)

Permissions required?:

Yes, this river runs through reserved forest. The forest guard was very friendly though, during the writing of this article.

Elevation profile:

Kempuhole_elevation_profile.jpg


Stretch 2:

Downstream of Gundya

Put in:

At the Gundya bridge

Take out:

Several options, the road runs close to the river for about 12kms.

Distance on river:

12kms

Difficulty:

Mostly class II rapids. Lots of fun waves at good levels. Lot of flat water too. Good for beginners.

Permissions required?:

Yes, the stretch falls under KempuHoLe reserved forest and Gundya reserved forest. We did not take permissions when we ran this section. It is recommended now.




Places to stay:

Stream of Joy home-stay is about 30 mins. Other options at Sakleshpur or Nelyady.



Maps



Pictures

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Mono rail (to be run yet...)

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Kempu dream


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Stay scared! (class V?...to be run yet)

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Boof Lab in high flow

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The turkey step

Seasons:

From June to September it will be in high flow.The upper stretch is recommended to expert paddlers only at that time.
Oct-Nov-Dec may be good levels. It drops very low after that, but still carries some water to be runnable.