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Old 03-12-2013   #1
Glenwood Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1972
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 6
camping between gws and gj

Where are the best places to river camp between gws and gj on the Colorado?

thebluegrenade is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-12-2013   #2
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New Castle, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 1,105
The best, or ANY? I can't think of many possibilities and haven't seen anyone doing it. Between New Castle and Silt there is a small piece of BLM land (directly below the obvious burn on the hillside) but only a little real estate below a heavily vegetated and steep bank to some rough camps accessible from the county road. Other than that, maybe some of the islands could be doable. I would love to know what else there is.

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Old 03-12-2013   #3
Hood River, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2163
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 295
Originally Posted by thebluegrenade View Post
Where are the best places to river camp between gws and gj on the Colorado?
Camp sites are few and far between. Your best bet is just to get a good map that shows public and private land on it. There is very little public land, so be prepared to go some long miles between camps. We were in sea kayaks.

The only two "good" campsites we found were:

1) A couple miles above De Beque on river right. There is a spot away from the freeway. Railroad is still super close on river left.

2) 1 mile above Cameo Dam, where the freeway goes through a tunnel. There is a decent place to sleep on river right or on an island of cobbles if the river is low enough. There is also a cool heron rookery here. Beware of poison ivy.

Other than that, we camped bandito style in the bushes and got eaten by mosquitos.

That said, it's actually a pretty cool section of braided stream (if you can ignore all the roads, farms, gas pads, and I-70). The section between Gwood and De Beque had some of the most vibrant bird life of any section on the Colorado.

Be prepared for a crappy portage around the Cameo Dam. They won't let you portage on river right, so you'll have to portage right next to the guard rail on I-70. Otherwise, take out at the exit just upstream of the dam. After the dam, you will run into 2 more major diversions before you almost completely run out of water near Palisade.

Good luck, if you decide to do it!
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