Accident Database

Report ID# 877

  • Unknown
  • Does not Apply
  • High Water

Accident Description

Brian Rueff, a twenty-year-old sophomore at UNCA, became the Green Narrows' second fatality on November 24, 2004. The river was running high, with a 200% release and heavy flow from tributaries. He was paddling with three friends when he got ahead of the group just before Gorilla. The group planned to portage Gorilla. Whether Mr. Rueff missed an eddy is not known. His body was found downstream, in rocks at Nutcracker.

A local rescue official told the media that they're called for a rescue at the Narrows 2 or 3 times a year and "9 times out of 10 it involves a body recovery." This exaggeration is too common; although the Narrows is famously difficult and dangerous, there have been only two known fatalities of kayakers there.

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