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Old 05-09-2013   #11
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 123
I have refrained from posting but....

I was rigging on the ramp next to the packraft group when all this went down ( it has been blown considerably out of proportion to actual events) and the "attitude" displayed started when the packraft group who was getting ready to put on was asked by the Ranger if they had a permit. Granted, it may have been 15 minutes prior to the "official" start of the day, but that's when it began. It seemed as if the packraft group, who by my telling were a friendly group of guys, took offense to the Ranger doing his job and asking to go through the procedures the rest of us expect to. I won't get into some of the comments I heard from the group putting on after the Ranger left, but some showed ignorance of the typical permit check in process that is a part of almost every Western permitted river.
A half hour later we went through check in a mutually respectful fashion and recieved our tag without incident.
Again, these guys were friendly enough and I love the boats and the video but this was a minor altercation and the Ranger was not the only one exhibiting "attitude".

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Old 05-09-2013   #12
Randaddy's Avatar
Eastern Slope, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1980
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2,403
I ran Westy this weekend and had a great experience from Alvin, as always. Talk shit about these people working hard for little pay to preserve that beautiful canyon all you want, but you're the losers blogging about a Westwater trip so everyone can read about how cool you are. Get over yourselves, it's class 3 and you didn't understand the simple rules. Talking shit about a ranger that's seen more whitewater than you ever will makes you seem all the weaker.

I wasn't certain about our WAG bags either. I had the sense to email the BLM in advance and inquire about the reusable container stipulation. It sounds like you're blaming your lack of experience on someone else. Weak.

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Old 05-10-2013   #13
GJ, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2011
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 478
Originally Posted by leo_amore View Post
I was rigging on the ramp next to the packraft group...
This is good beta and I appreciate you chiming in.

We'll be the first to admit our inexperience/ignorance. I've only been boating a few years and have only gone through the permit dance a handful of times, ditto with my partners that day. Still lots to learn, clearly.

I'll agree, sorta, that the episode in question has been blown out of proportion, but only in that it's being focused on to the exclusion of other events of the morning, and day.

My beef then, as now, is that the published regs were not the only rules we needed to know about, and their enforcement was inconsistent. Had the BLM site been concise and accurate, and had the ranger enforced those exact rules, we wouldn't be having this discussion because the rules/regs would have been followed to a "T".

I received a call this PM from Jennifer @ BLM/Moab, but wasn't there to take it. Will call her ASAP, probably Monday, to discuss. Based on the gist of her voice mail, in the end it seems this thread may result in the website and put-in kiosk being updated to jive with each other.

Good weekend,

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Old 05-10-2013   #14
Anchorage, Alaska
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 70

One thing I have learned from packrafting on the colorado and in multiple jurisdictions is some humility.

A couple times I may have acted in a way that only reenforced the parks impression of us: media motivated, inexperienced, and wreckless. My overwhelmingly positive experience in Grand Canyon first involved being told that they thought it was safer to take a paddle board down and that basically I was going to drown. Ridiculous.

I remember being blindsided when I did westwater about the hard case. Did it with a friend in a packraft, me in my kayak. We just found something from our truck, or maybe we talked our way of it, can't be certain. At this point enough people have been rude, or stupid from the packrafting community, that at least in canyonlands (and maybe westwater) they anticipate it now.

I don't think its entirely fair either. Rafters, and backpackers do all sorts of dumb things all the time, but they are not a brand new sport. and there is much more of them. It sucks to be taking shit from some guy who paddles a ducky (Randaddy), however he has a point.

When packrafting in these areas I think its important to consider the following (1) they do let us do it (2) they have encountered packrafter who fit one of the above mentioned stereotypes (3) you want to help them realize that we don't fit the above mentioned stereotypes

Looks like a fun way to spend a day.
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Old 05-10-2013   #15
Louisville, Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 520
Nice work. I was just trying to PM you. I realized last week that Doom is an old friend I am trying to get in touch with him. I sent and email through his blog - hoping he checks and responds.

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