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Old 05-17-2010   #1
RockRider's Avatar
Frisco, Colorado
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 36
Need some info on rafting Gunny Gorge.

Escaping the Summit Snow; We figured Gunny Gorge might be a good run for this weekend. We have not run it before, so I have a few questions. Hopefully someone can help me out.

I saw in our river book there is a guy who will pack in gear down the Chukar Trail. The phone number listed has no message, so I am not sure if it is correct. It was for Larry Franks. Does anyone have a phone number/email address for this guy? Or even know of someone else who packs gear in. Is there any camping allowed/available along the river at the end of Chukar Trail. Does anyone have a contact for a shuttle service in the area?

The dogs are coming - they usually have no problems on a class III - just want to make sure that is the case right now.


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Old 05-17-2010   #2
Hotchkiss, CO, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 1
Hey Rockrider, Larry Franks is who you need to talk to. He does horse packs into the Gorge, but it's about $120 per horse with a 3 horse minimum. So, it's good to take a group of folks and split that cost (but 12 person maximum for overnight camping). But, that's the best number probably, so keep trying. Also, for shuttle you can call Leroy and Gunnison River PLeasure Park. You'll drive to the take-out and he can drive you to the put-in. He can also check the contact info you have for Larry. You can camp at the top of Chuckar trail, which is hot and not as pretty, or you can camp at the bottom along the river... both sites have pit toilets. If you can't afford the horse pack, which we never do, it's nice sometimes to take a trip or two the night before you put in, spend the night at the bottom, and finish taking trips the next AM (before it gets hot).

Hope that helps.

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Old 05-17-2010   #3
RockRider's Avatar
Frisco, Colorado
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 36
That absolutely helps, thanks! Is it possible to just bring a wagon to go down the trail to the river? The pack horse deal will be too much, as it is just the two of us and the dogs. If I can't use a wagon, then hiking a mile with gear may be a deal breaker. Glad I posted!

We are planning on arriving in the afternoon, then camping and getting on the river in the AM. I appreciate the shuttle info.
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Old 05-17-2010   #4
Lakewood, Colorado
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 504
I don't think wheels are allowed as it is wilderness.
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Old 05-17-2010   #5
El Flaco's Avatar
Golden, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1984
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 1,879
That would be one heck of a wagon.

It's been a few years since I've hiked down with a kayak, but there are some fairly burly sections of that trail, if memory serves.

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Old 05-17-2010   #6
RockRider's Avatar
Frisco, Colorado
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 36
OK - Thanks for all the info and great picture. I think I will call Frank and see if there is another group we can tack on to - otherwise this is not the trip for us this weekend. How do commercial outfitters get their gear down to the river?
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Old 05-17-2010   #7
Missoula, Montana
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 84
2 of us hiked a raft down it once, rolled up with paddles sticking out. Paddles resting on our shoulders. It was maybe a 14' Hypalon boat so it was pretty light. It kind of sucked, but the rest of the group carried all the other gear so we only had to make one trip down.
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Old 05-17-2010   #8
RockRider's Avatar
Frisco, Colorado
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 36
Thanks for that info Marco. It would be my husband and I with a 136 lb raft, plus cooler, a dry bag or two, plus PFDs; I agree, sounds sucky. Who knows, we might get a wild hair!
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Old 05-17-2010   #9
crested butte, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1998
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 21
A one hour adobe clay 4x4 road should also be of concern. Make sure there is no precip in the forecast. A guy by the name of Patten and myself matched each other in doing seven trips down that manure decorated path. Each trip was 85 degree sun. At the time I was in my early 30's and Patten late 50's. We would never do that again. Get yourself some horses and spend more time in the gorge. Make sure when camping you have a tarp for a kitchen floor to catch all crumbs. Pack everything out!
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Old 05-17-2010   #10
honkey-in-a-coleman's Avatar
deep, west elks
Paddling Since: 1994
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 2
Get your self a pack frame....roll it tightly and lash it on. One person carries the boat, the other the gear- think backpacker style. Stop half way at the clearing / flat spot and switch. It'll only take you an hour at the most. Go slow take breaks. Also show up at the chukar w/ your shuttle already run in late afternoon. Drink beer and wait for dark, then hike the gear down in the cool.
Its really not that bad.

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