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Old 06-05-2012   #1
boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 298
Desolation July 9th at 1500cfs...still good?

I have a trip planned for July 9th on Deso. Some of the group are thinking the water will be too low to be good. Any thoughts for or against? Flaming Gorge says they will be releasing 1500cfs till Sept. 30th so I assume it will be down to that by July.


May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face.
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Old 06-05-2012   #2
openboat's Avatar
Longmont, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1986
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 227
I just got off that stretch with the Holiday Expedition folks, and they said that they will be running it all summer, and they don't think it will become unrunnable.

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Old 06-05-2012   #3
cedar city, Utah
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 1,928
Many of the rapids in Deso are actually better at moderate or low levels. Haven't been in there below 3k but we have a July trip as well and I think it will be actually a little more challenging (by Deso terms).

The upper stretch could be brutally slow though.....worse than normal so I think we are planning 2 long days to Jack.
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Old 06-05-2012   #4
Salt Lake City, Utah
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 148
I've run it at around 1200-1500 a couple of times. Coal Creek is really bony and you constantly have to watch for sleepers, but it isn't a big deal.
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Old 06-05-2012   #5
nicho's Avatar
North Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 442
BLM site says "definitely navigable" at flows of 700.
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Old 06-05-2012   #6
oarframe's Avatar
Gardnerville, Nevada
Paddling Since: 00
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 447
it'll be terrible, rocks, bugs, heat, oh the horror - I'll take your permit if you don't go~!
more snow = more water
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Old 06-05-2012   #7
WillYates's Avatar
Silverthorne, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 77
I've done it at 1130, no problems. Some nice sandbar camps at the beginning, a few years ago. The take out ramp will start about a foot above the water line. Aka, sucks with big boat and trailer but okay if enough people.
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Old 06-08-2012   #8
Montrose, Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 128
Just got off. It ran fine during our trip. Coal Creek was boney. Joe Hutch was much tamer than I remember it in '09. Plenty of opportunities to work on you rowing and reading of eddyline skills, but really not a bad run.

The worst part was a day of HUGE wind. The good news is all of the bugs that may have been there have to have been blown to Wyoming.

Have a good trip.
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Old 06-08-2012   #9
DeeGardiner's Avatar
Sandy, Utah
Paddling Since: 1975
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 83
I ran it several years ago at 1800 cfs. We had strong afternoon winds every day, so it made for some hard rowing. Nothing like last week's monster wind, but strong enough that we used two people on the oars much of the time.

So, it is doable, but it takes some work. If you can take 7 or more days, you can have a more relaxing trip. Doing it in 6 days makes for long days if the wind is blowing.

I don't recall the rapids being a big deal. There are rocks and sand bars, the current is slow enough you can easily dodge them - just keep your eyes open.

Having done it once, I have no desire to run it again at those low flows. But that is mainly because I am lazy and I like big waves.
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Old 06-09-2012   #10
Salida, Colorado
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 3
I've run it all the way down to 700, its bony and you can beach yourself on barely covered sandbars if you don't watch out, but it's still very runnable. The wind can really be a bear at low flows so make it a priority to be on early every day and in camp by early or mid afternoon and you'll be happier. Have a good trip!

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