Sponsored by Kokatat, the expedition team departed for the remote region on Sept. 23, 2010.
Comprised of seven experienced Class V+ whitewater paddlers, the team is being led by expedition paddler Matt Wilson, who has completed several first descents all over the world. Joining him on this expedition are Ben Luck, Ryan Casey, Evan Ross, Matt Klema, Nate Klema and Fred Coriell.
Described as the last major tributary of the South American Amazon River, the Pongo De Aguirre Gorge has been previously attempted by two teams of paddlers. Variables such as weather, rising water, low supplies, inept scouting, and huge whitewater forced both teams to abort their missions. Wilson’s crew has implemented an expedition strategy, learning from the experiences of the prior attempts, by making the descent in the height of the dry season and preparing for over two weeks on the water with plenty of supplies and equipment.
“If successful, we will have paddled nearly 100 miles and dropped 4,000 feet from the Andes to the Peruvian Jungle,” says the team’s Nate Klema.