We put on Saturday 6/6 for 5 days on Lodore.
We'd planned ahead on having a thorough check-in and were organized and ready. Our TL worked with Ranger Mike, a full-time NPS regular, not a volunteer camp host, and had all our peeps on the ramp for the inspection. At his request we put all our PFDs in a pile and gear ready to show. From experience as a volunteer ranger at Westwater, I'd say that Ranger Mike nailed the check-in, pre-river talk, and inspection with just the right level of detail without being onerous or holding up our group unnecessarily.
After the inspection I spent a few minutes chatting with Ranger Mike who stated that the Dinosaur River Office has been monitoring the Buzz and is aware of the recent complaints. He added that NPS has been working to improve the interactions at the put in. He also stated that our group was well organized and that it helped that he could easily tell that he was dealing with an experienced group of boaters.
The take home message is to have your act together, be prepared, and work with the ranger to get off the ramp. If your trip looks like a disorganized shit show, be ready for a very thorough inspection and talk.
The put in was buggy, as was the Cove campsite, other than that bugs weren't too bad.
Flows were a really fun 2K through Lodore with the Yampa kicking in another 7K to make the lower section really fun. It was a great trip!
Nothing in the world is more yielding and gentle than water. Yet it has no equal for conquering the resistant and tough. The flexible can overcome the unbending; the soft can overcome the hard. - Lao Tse