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Old 01-28-2012   #1
Charlottesville, Virginia
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 38
Need help Planning my June Colorado Trip!

Hi all,

I am starting to plan my Colorado boating trip this June, and need some help narrowing down my river hit list.

I am from Virginia and consider myself a IV+/V- boater (East Coast that is). I am most comfortable on rivers such as the Upper Yough, Lower Big Sandy, and Watauga. I am comfortable on this trip doing runs of comparable difficulty to the above runs and also taking a slight step up from these.

On my previous Colorado trip I did the following runs and will be looking to step it up a notch from these.
Boulder Canyon, Dumont (Clear Creek), Upper Mish (Poudre), Pineview Falls (Poudre), Numbers, Royal Gorge, Lake Fork Gunnison Canyon, Alto-Alto

I will have 12 days to boat and will be spending have of that in the Boulder area and then doing a road trip the other part.

Please help me nail down a good hit list.


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Old 01-28-2012   #2
no tengo
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Baytopia, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1876
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Posts: 1,768
upper animas.

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Old 01-29-2012   #3
Paddling Since: 96
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Old 01-29-2012   #4
Westminster, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2010
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Posts: 286
+1 for Bailey if it is running
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Old 01-29-2012   #5
lmyers's Avatar
Buena Vista, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 4,207
Since you will be in Boulder you should definitely run Lower South Boulder and look at some of the other stretches of Boulder Creek.

North Saint Vrain Proving Grounds

Upper Clear Creek/Blackrock

Bailey Canyon on the NF South Platte

Upper and Middle Tenmile Creek

Gilman Gorge on the Eagle

Lake Creek and Clear Creek of the Ark

Castle Creek and Slaughterhouse on the Roaring Fork (if it runs this year)
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Old 01-30-2012   #6
Charlottesville, Virginia
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 38
Thank you! Anyone else wanna throw their suggestions in?
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Old 01-31-2012   #7
oh yeah
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 535
gore, the source of boulder creek, lower west fork of the clear creek, if it's been flossed, through lawson on the clear creek, upper and middle ten mile is a great intro to V- creeking.

how far do you want to road trip? going from boulder to the ark valley you could hit the above on the way.

or you could hit those and go north to steamboat stopping at gore on the way and then return to boulder through the poudre valley. that would be cool and you could add in the encampment on the way (sort of) and then the fort collins stuff at the end. that's what i'd do.
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Old 01-31-2012   #8
South Bend, Indiana
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 6
If you're in the Poudre drainage, check out the Little South Fork. Ten beautiful miles of remote, super-continuous III+/IV- with a little IV+/V- depending on level. Just keep an eye out for wood. It will be there.

If it hasn't already been suggested, buy a copy of Whitewater of the Southern Rockies. Great book, beautiful photos; it's the best $50 you can spend on trip planning. Plunk down another $20 for a Colorado Gazetteer and you've got everything you need.
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Old 01-31-2012   #9
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Denver,, exhaustion
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 578
have you seen our snowpack this year?

Just saying your choices may be a bit more dictated by what has water.

but if flowing i give Bailey a huge thumbs up (plus with the low snow levels it should be going)

also gore,

little south of the poudre (if flowing... it's not going to go long this year if at all)
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Old 01-31-2012   #10
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 3,097
If you are spending 1/2 your time in boulder, you can keep yourself busy on the front range drainages. The front range has multiple parallel drainages that are about 20-30 miles apart and almost all of them have good class IV+ on them. Check out Bailey (V-), blackrock on clear creek (V-), boulder creek (IV/IV+), big thompson (IV+ if dam is releasing), south boulder creek (IV+ with some V).

On the road trip, clear creek of the ark (V-), castle creek into slaughterhouse (IV+ near aspen), and the upper animas (V-, durango) would be a great road trip. If you head down through crested butte you might want to check out the upper east, the slate or daisy creek. Get your pick list of runs and plan your route out using an online map to minimize driving times.

A great online resource is Eddy Flower Lots of info for all of the runs I listed. Another good source would be to search mountainbuzz (upper right hand) for previous requests. There have been several over the past couple of years.

I wouldn't recommend Gore in june for IV+/V- paddling. Its typically high during June and I haven't heard of any IV+/V- boaters paddling it, mainly the class V crew.

You will need to check flows when you get here to see whats running. June is a good time to come and you should have lots of options. Do your research, get a good guidebook, plan out the trip, and post back here with your itinerary. There are some runs that look good on paper that I would skip (tenmile creek, alto alto).

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