Go Back   Mountain Buzz > Whitewater Boating > Whitewater Kayaking

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 11-30-2011   #1
Tom Martin's Avatar
Flagstaff, Arizona
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 818
RRFW Riverwire - Grand Canyon River Lottery System Breaks Down

RRFW Riverwire - Grand Canyon River Lottery System Breaks Down
November 30, 2011

Rafting trips through Grand Canyon National Park have been awarded to
noncommercial river runners through a complex online lottery system since
the adoption of the latest River Management Plan in 2006. Unfortunately,
that system is not currently operational ahead of the next main lottery
scheduled to take place in February, 2012.

Sometime between June 16th and early September the website crashed,
preventing permit seekers from even filling out forms to establish profiles
(user IDs). Each river runner vying for a permit must successfully create a
profile in order to enter the lottery.

Formerly, the online system was also used to award canceled and unused
permits throughout the year but in mid-September, Grand Canyon National Park
officials ran a "call-In" lottery for available river dates in September,
October, November and the 1st part of December, 2011, utilizing emails and
phone calls instead of the online system. On November 21, 2011, with the
site still broken, the NPS conducted another "call-in" lottery for a total
of 33 dates in December 2011, January and February 2012.

All dates offered in the September cancellation lottery were claimed except
for a launch date starting two days after the lottery ended, but the
November lottery, which closed the day before Thanksgiving had disappointing
results. Twenty two December and January launches remain unclaimed with no
apparent mechanism in place to release them.

With the next main lottery only two months away, River Runners for
Wilderness strongly urges the Park to repair the system as soon as possible
or devise an appropriate, and hopefully simpler, alternate system. Permit
seekers who have not created a "profile" in the past need to be able to do
so as soon as possible.

For the past six years River Runners for Wilderness has urged the Park to
reduce the winter trip restrictions. In early September, RRFW Co-Director
Tom Martin met with the Park's new Superintendent, David Uberuaga, to
discuss suggestions to facilitate better winter trip distribution,
particularly important in light of the large number of unclaimed launches.

One of the topics of discussion was the relaxation of the heavy restrictions
and barriers river runners face in attempting to obtain a winter permit.
RRFW hopes the Park will make substantive changes in the next few weeks to
help river runners utilize the available trip starts for December and

The NPS has a number of options available to release the dates. The last
Colorado River Management Plan had a simple call-in system that was open to
anyone who wanted a permit. Elimination of the restrictive
one-trip-per-calendar-year rule, decreasing the $100 per person fee, and
returning the trip length to 30 days as existed in the previous river plan,
are all mechanisms the NPS can immediately adopt to assist river runners in
obtaining a winter permit.

The twenty two unclaimed river trips are the equivalent of 8,800 user-days.
A user-day is one person in the canyon for any part of one day. As part of
the 2006 river management plan, the NPS had assumed that 34,087 user-days
would be used by winter river trips, launching on 120 river trips. It
appears that the amount of dead-of-winter demand is substantially less than
was anticipated at the time of the plan's adoption.

There is no question that noncommercial summer, fall and spring demand far
outstrips availability, however. While the December and January river trips
go unclaimed, the river lottery for summertime dates in 2011 had over 250
applicants trying for individual dates in June. A whopping 680 applicants
applied for the first two permits available immediately after September
15th, the end of the commercial motorized tour boat season. This clearly
demonstrates the intense demand for a motor-free river experience when the
weather is nice.

RRFW points out that an immediate relaxation of winter restrictions may help
get those unclaimed winter permits into the hands of those hardy river
runners willing to use them.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~
RIVERWIRE is a free service to the community of river lovers from River
Runners for Wilderness. To join, send an e-mail address to
riverwire@rrfw.org and we'll add it to the RRFW RIVERWIRE e-mail alerts

Join RRFW's listserver to stay abreast of and participate in the latest
river issues. It's as easy as sending a blank e-mail to

Check out RRFW's Rafting Grand Canyon Wiki for free information on
Do-It-Yourself Grand Canyon rafting info
Rafting Grand Canyon

Check out new items and donate at the RRFW Store! RRFW is a non-profit
project of Living Rivers. https://www.rrfw.org/store

Visit us on Facebook at River Runners For Wilderness | Facebook

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~
Tom Martin is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Topic Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
RRFW Riverwire - Grand Canyon River Lottery Review Released Tom Martin Whitewater Kayaking 4 01-08-2011 03:00 PM
RRFW Riverwire Yet Another Grand Canyon Lottery Started Tom Martin Whitewater Kayaking 70 06-25-2007 10:43 AM
RRFW Riverwire HELP AVAILABLE FOR GRAND CANYON LOTTERY Tom Martin Whitewater Kayaking 0 05-07-2007 10:54 PM
RRFW Riverwire – GRAND CANYON LOTTERY HAPPENING NOW! Tom Martin Whitewater Kayaking 14 10-17-2006 10:02 PM
RRFW Riverwire – GRAND CANYON LOTTERY HAPPENING NOW! Tom Martin River Access & Safety Alerts! 2 10-04-2006 06:51 PM

» Classified Ads
Wavesport XG 48

posted by rendock

Wavesport ZG 48 kayak, fun all around boat, hardly used...

*!* Pyranha S6 200 with...

posted by MaxwellSilverKayak

Pyranha S6 200 playboat for sale. Great for larger...

Wave Sport Ethos 10

posted by davidwsilver

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities

Copyright 2002-2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:24 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.