CKS Blog

First “Backwards Female Descent”! At the Devils Punchbowls.

The aesthetic, stacked waterfalls known as the Devil’s Punchbowls are located on Schoffield Pass between Crested Butte and Marble, Colorado. If ya wanna go huck, drive to the stream crossing from the CB side and hike downhill.

Chris Larsen and Chris Menges hike down towards what they hope to find: punchbowls that are clear of wood.

After an easy hike, you’ll come to these beauties….

Devil’s Punchbowls as seen from below (above) and from the side (below).

Paul Gamache likes paddling off of waterfalls. He knows that scouting is a good idea even when something looks like ‘plop and drop’ from far above.

Paul scouting the first falls (above) and running them (below).

What??!! Someone framed this shot (below) a bit off. Paul on drop 2 of the punchbowls.

The most interesting part of running the Punchbowls in simply putting in, and getting on the water. Basically, it requires a sliding seal launch from 10 feet up a steep bank. This slide puts the paddler on the water slide/entry to the waterfall, about 15 feet from the lip. It’s a great warm up for flopping. Chris Menges, in his boat (below) getting ready to slide in and drop.

The ‘entry move’ (above).

Chris Menges dropping the first waterfall (above) and in the pool between (below)…..

….and dropping into the second falls (below).

A cool sequence of running the second drop as seen from above (below).

Ok, so here is what you have been waiting for! Nicole Mansfield (below) styles the first backwards female descent of drop 1 on the punchbowls. We are calling Guinness right away to notify them of this new world record (joke).

So how did this happen? You’ll see in an upcoming video that we will be posting soon. Funny thing about this backwards descent is that Nicole had a better line than either of the boys (who both ran it forwards).


CKS ‘used kayak sales-woman’ Nicole Mansfield stomping the second drop (above).

This upper South fork of the Crystal region also contains a really fun double drop upstream of the punchbowls section that is a bit mellower and easier to access and put on. It’s a 8 to 10 foot boof into a pool, a mini mank class 3 boulder garden drop and a clean 12 – 15 footer. Nicole running it forwards (above & below).


Paul Gamache entry boof (above) and on the second drop (below).


Paul on the second falls of this super fun double set as photographed from above.

Nicole hiking back up to the truck after a fun afternoon of park, hike and huck.


Safety coordinator and principal photographer Chris Larsen paddling Luna across the river.

Look for a short video on this adventure coming up soon. It will be posted right here, so check back.

Photography by: Chris Larsen, Chris Menges and Paul Gamache.

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