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Old 10-22-2013   #21
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 380
Broken down in terms of accessibility. Feel free to add/subtract

NA Classics in terms of ease of access:
Green--North Carolina
Embudo - New Mexico
Big South fork of the Poudre -- Colorado
Little White Salmon--Washington
Tumwater Canyon--Washington
NF Payette--Idaho
SF Payette--Idaho
South Fork of the Merced--California
South Fork American Golden Gate--California
South Silver--California

Classics in terms of moderate (to this is a bitch) accessibility:
Linville Gorge --N.C.
Ravens Fork--N.C.
South Fork Salmon--Idaho
Inner gorges of Lime Creek--Colorado
Crystal Gorge-Colorado
Vallecito Creek--Colorado

Classics in terms of ridonculous accessibility:
Upper Cherry Creek--California
Middle Kings--California
Devils Postpile--California
Royal Gorge--California
Stikine--NW Territories

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Old 10-22-2013   #22
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 380
Originally Posted by Roy View Post
The Embudo needs to be in there for a classic V day trip, and while I haven't done it, the Clark's Fork Box has gotta make the list for classic V multi-day.
agree with embudo but doesn't the box have way too many portages to be considered "classic"?

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Old 10-22-2013   #23
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 748
I like these lists. One of my favorites that hasn't been listed yet is the Alseseca in Mexico - the roadside section is awesome IV-V and there are solid class V sections above and below.
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Old 10-22-2013   #24
Erie, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2002
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 67
One definition of a classic could be a free flowing river. The following two rivers come to mind:
Yampa - the only remaining free flowing river in the Colorado River Basin
Yellowstone - longest free flowing river in the lower 48
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Old 10-22-2013   #25
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Bazzaro, World
Paddling Since: 2020
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,323
South Fork of the Salmon. Start with Sesech and push out to MacKay. The perfect goldilocks run and a classic that not many people get on!
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Old 10-22-2013   #26
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 2,239
Runs/rivers in Northern Central America and Mexico that could /should be considered classic (whatever that means)

Rio Cangrejal,Honduras -multiple contiguous segments from II to kayaker accomadations
near upper (IV /V) put in /takeout...raftable sections (including commercial) ...other north coast rivers/creeks nearby

Lanquin -Cahabon, Guatemala -Cahabon is the most popular rafting river in Guat. ..1-3 days III / springs..Lanquin is semi creeky III -IV (V plus /P) ..near popular tourist attractions Semuc Champey and Semuc Lanquin caves and pools..hundreds of other rivers in Guat. don 't know what

you'd call classic..Ocosito, Nil, and the Genesis Gorge of the Polochic sound pretty awesome to me...Las Conchas on the Chiyu is sort of the 'Micos 'of Guat., travertine III with one thirty footer .Nearby Rio Chahal recently first D 'd has a couple advanced sections....3 plus runs down river from La's Conchas..

Moho River Belize -candidate for best class 3 river on earth, 60 ledge drops up to 15-18 feet..epitome of plop and drop..pristine jungle, monkeys, iguanas, basilisks, true Mayan villages, other travertine hucks to explore nearby...Macal made Paddler magazines 12 best jungle rivers in '99( so did the other rivers mentioned above) but only bits and pieces remain runnable due to dams
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Old 10-22-2013   #27
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 393
Originally Posted by Smokey Carter View Post
agree with embudo but doesn't the box have way too many portages to be considered "classic"?
The box only has 6 portages. And there are individual rapids in the box that are better than the entire Embudo.

There are so many rad places to float rivers in North America that compiling an all-encompassing list is pretty tough. An individual experience is colored by water levels, what you portaged/ran, and your crew. I've had a blast on mediocre runs with a great crew, and I've had lousy days on mega-classics because I portaged my face off and/or had lousy flows.

Some of the most meaningful river moments for me have been on non-classic runs. I've also had some pretty pedestrian days on runs that are generally considered "classic". I don't know if I'd call the Devils Postpile a classic, but I had moments in there that I will still remember when I'm 80 years old.

With that long preamble, my top 5:

+Middle Kings: on my last trip someone described it as "a season's worth of class V in a single trip"

+Fantasy Falls: Huge flow window. Tons of variety, epic camping. Huge rapids that can be portaged. Slightly less-huge rapids in gorges that can't be portaged.

+North Fork Payette: Sometimes it's warm and mellow. Sometimes it's cold and terrifying. It's always good. Cool place to push yourself because the road is close, but also a high stakes place to push yourself because it's so continuous.

+Devils Canyon, Middle Feather: So good. So stacked. Like the Middle Kings but less scary.

+Clarks Fork Box: Aesthetic and complex rapids, just enough to mank to remember it's the rockies, unforgettable scenery.
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Old 10-22-2013   #28
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 2,239
Chiapas!!!-Where to start?Well Agua Azul is. "Kayaker Disneyland " the world 's most extensive travertine formation over 500 waterfalls in three miles of river (multiple channels) just show up, almost always runnsble, scout and Huck what you want from scrapey III 's to blind 80 footers.Then there are spectacular upper sections.Many other rivers near Palenque /AA from mellow multiday rafting with ruins, the Usumascinta, to easy access day run with playspots then bigwater 4/5 then crazy stacked class 4 ledge drops, the Salto de Aghast section of the Tulija, to various 3 plus travertine... just northeast of there the roadside class 4 of the La Sierra to the committing narrow cliffed in canyons of the the Almanandro
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Old 10-22-2013   #29
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 2,239
South Central Chiapas the Santos Domingo (can you say Hotel Charley) and its sister the Tzaconeja are world class challenging class 5/6 travertine (some easier parts.) CHECK OUT the photos of the Santos Domingo (lower canyons) on Pac Coast has many good but obscure runs around Tapachula...

Veracruz -Alsaseca and rest of the Filo -Bobos system depending on skills...the Antigua was the original Mexican whitewater destination

La Huasteca-Micos and El Salto are old classics ...Rio Verde...Mina's Viejas looks awesome, kind of creeky 4 plus travertine

Copper Canyon -true exploratory creekin 'or multiday rafting...I guess the Urique is the classic of the area...see Rocky Contos' book or SierraRios: Kayak, Raft, and Protect Rivers in Mexico and Peru
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Old 10-22-2013   #30
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Bozeman, Montana
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 5,507
In all honesty Glenn Classic is a loose term.. My favorite power spots are.

In this order
The Black Canyon of the Yellowstone
The Box of the Clark fork of the Yellowstone
Fremont Canyon North Platte River

All deep gorges that place you into a deeper realm than just kayaking..

A classic to me should be fun, as well as keep you honest. Nothing like a couple mandatory rapids in your life glendo..

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