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Old 05-02-2009   #1
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 32
Dolores River

Just looking for a little beta on the Dolores, Gateway to Dewey bridge section, Flows, technicality of Chicken raper, good campsites etc...

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Old 05-02-2009   #2
Grand Junction, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 39

We did this section last May 3,4. Flow was ~2,500, bigger water (4-5K) would have made the run quite a bit harder. Here's my TR from another post:

"Just got back from the charred remains of the Dewey Bridge. Here's my info on Gateway to Dewey (@ ~2,500cfs)

Put on the water at the Gateway bridge Friday evening around 6:30 with the plan of camping at one of the island camps before stateline (miles 4 and 5 of the trip in the guide book). When we got to the diversion dam rapid it was nearing dusk (bad timing), and I missed the opportunity to scout. I would suggest a scout of this rapid if you have time, if not, run far left as the middle and right sides are carnage (don't underestimate this one, it has the potential to really mess you up if you run center or right). Since dark was quickly upon us, we made an impromptu camp under a cottonwood on river right a couple hundreds yards downstream of the rapid.

Saturday, stopped to scout stateline. Checked out the left side first. Very tight with many pour-overs and wrap rocks. No strainers, but you don't want to run left if at all possible. We ferried over and checked out the preferred right run. The run was pretty straightforward at this level. Entered in the right channel and split a couple pour-overs just to the left of the gravel bar. Continued this line straight into a small hole and punched through to the slack water on river right. Ferried right and entered the right channel (split two large rocks) around the lower island. There is a pretty decent hole directly in the middle of the channel that you need to square up to or skirt just to the left. Rest of the run is cake. High water could be pretty rough.

It is worth noting that there was apparently an ATV convention or a family reunion on the west side of the river. four-wheelers up and down the road all day.

Anyway, continued on to Beaver Creek which we scouted in two different sections, upper and lower. Upper section is easy, just avoid the right side as the wave train (which is tempting) leads into a couple rocks that could be problematic. The lower section is a bit tougher. House sized boulders and large rocks constrict flow into very narrow runs that require some fairly quick moves. At higher flows this one could be tough, with wraps a very real possibility. The camp above the rapids is decent, but the road runs behind it and there was a lot of ATV traffic as already noted. A few miles below Beaver Creek the road ends and the canyon narrows. We continued down to about trip mile 17 and camped river right (the camp that the guide book calls a "Grand Canyon Class Hike"). Nice little camp with early shade and a fair amount of sand. The hike is very nice.

Sunday, we rowed the final 16 miles of the trip (not much to note).

There were few "established" camps that I noticed, with those already mentioned being the best. That said, there were many potential sites that would work just fine in a pinch. After Beaver Creek we didn't see another person until we hit Robert's bottom near the confluence.

I hope this info helps anybody planning a trip down that way (info seems to be kind of hard to come by)."

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Old 05-02-2009   #3
spankey's Avatar
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 81

Thats the kind of reporting that makes the Buzz the Buzz. Thanks.
"I hope others think more of me than I think of myself" SL
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Old 05-04-2009   #4
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 56
Did you utilize or know of any shuttle service for that section?
Big Da
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Old 05-04-2009   #5
Dave Frank's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,727
Originally Posted by Big Da View Post
Did you utilize or know of any shuttle service for that section?
That section has a heinous shuttle until the high pass opens up. We contemplated this run last spring and were turned off by shuttle prices. I forget how much, but call American shuttle or some of the companies out of Moab.

(seven two 0)-298-2242
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Old 05-04-2009   #6
Grand Junction, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 39
Originally Posted by Big Da View Post
Did you utilize or know of any shuttle service for that section?
We did our own shuttle. Dropped a car off at dewey the day before launch and had a friend drop us off in gateway on launch day. We had that luxury because GJ is pretty much half way. As DF said, pretty long shuttle for a pretty short trip, especially if the shortcut road is closed. Not sure of any shuttle service, but with enough notice, I could probably help. When are you thinking of hittin' it?
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Old 05-05-2009   #7
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 56
This Friday, Sat, Sun. Few rafts and some kayakers
Big Da
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Old 05-07-2009   #8
flagstaff, Arizona
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 11
Any word from the grape vine what might be happening with the H2O release out of McPhee. Thought the dolores water conservation website would have been updated today. Wish full thinking.
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Old 05-07-2009   #9
rivermanryan's Avatar
Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 580
We got a late forecast this month. Everyone is crunching numbers right now. It should be out later today or tomorrow. I don't think things are looking much better. There still should be some release, but it isn't much.
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Old 05-07-2009   #10
prescott, Arizona
Paddling Since: 1982
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 276
Dolores Water Conservancy District

the latest

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