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Old 09-28-2015   #1
Rifle, Colorado
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 49
put-in/take-out etiquette

I feel like I may be opening a can of worms here, but what are some proper etiquette while rigging/de-rigging?

I ask as I had an interesting experience at the Cisco takeout this weekend. I pulled my boat in to an open spot at the ramp after completing a great first run of Westwater. Everyone at the take-out seemed to be moving efficiently and had a great attitude about it.

All the sudden, a large barge of commercial boats pulled up with their motor and immediately began shouting and berating all the boaters de-rigging. There was a nice line of boats patiently waiting on the sides of the ramp, but this commercial boatman began screaming that he had the right of way, and everyone needed to get their gear out of the way. He insisted that "if the ranger was here, he'd tell you all to get out of my way". Honestly, as a new boater I have no idea if he was in the right, but it doesn't quite make sense to me to leave a large open spot at all times for commercial boats. He then had someone grab the bus and trailer and pull it down the ramp, blocking many people in.

I don't get it. Was he right? Should everyone immediately move out of the way to accommodate a commercial trip? Seems like most of the boating community has been really great and friendly, but this guy from "Canyon Voyages" really ruined the cool vibe at the take-out. Needless to say, no one was in any rush to move efficiently after being harassed and berated by this guy.

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Old 09-28-2015   #2
Steamboat, Colorado
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 582
I think there is a pretty relevant thread in regards to this... I think it was about the Arkansas and one of the commercial companies down there.... pages and pages of ramp etiquette. Oh and there's a good spoof on that thread about the guys down in Durango.

It's a good day to be a duck....
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Old 09-28-2015   #3
Steamboat, Colorado
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 582
River Runners BV

^^^ That one... PAGES and PAGES of friggin etiquette.
It's a good day to be a duck....
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Old 09-28-2015   #4
Rifle, Colorado
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 49
Good to know. Thanks!
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Old 09-28-2015   #5
DanOrion's Avatar
Indian Hills, Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,448
I believe proper etiquette is to point out that "the goat" is clearly visible at the Cisco takeout. Customers love the goat.
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Old 09-28-2015   #6
Aurora, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1985
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 44
Boat ramps are first come, first served except for a few areas where the commercials have their own ramp. That guide was being a dick.
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Old 09-28-2015   #7
sledhooligan's Avatar
Craigamerica, -
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 129
Sounds like he was being a **** and needs punched in his mouth. Each group taking out can take one lane at the takeout. As long as everyone was not dragging there feet and fiddle fucken around he needed to wait his turn. If your not up to track him down and introduce him to the back of your hand you need to call the ranger office and let them know . Also call up the company he works for and make a complant.
No one cares that you are a river guide
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Old 09-28-2015   #8
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Moab, Utah
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 106
Look, it's easy to Monday Morning Quarter Back. The guide you are not-so-cryptically referring to is a long-time boatman with hundreds of WW trips under his belt (and is totally not an A$$hole). Having been on both the private and commercial side of the Cisco scene, the reality is what you might consider efficient at the end of your vacation is different from the efficiency needed to get your people home so you can clock out. They have to come back and do it all again tomorrow. Celebrating is fine, but leave a lane.

And he's right...if you guys were taking your time the ranger would have said to move your stuff to the side, let these guys back their trailer and be gone. I can't speak to or defend his tone, but it sounds like you gave him a lot of reason to be frustrated.

The ramp is the place to show up, pack up, and get out. Truly, congrats on a great first run, but the commercial guide who shows up behind you doesn't care that you successfully stayed black side down. He is focused on getting his people home and off the bus, because he doesn't get to celebrate his runs or "cool vibe" until he has shook their hand and walked away.

There's been a lot of dirt about commercial boaters on these forums this year, but the reality is these people have far more experience than almost any private boater on almost any stretch. Just because they are in business mode and not party mode doesn't mean they are a**holes. They are doing their job. From the sounds of it, the ramp was busy and unorganized. Canyon Voyages has some of the most competent and professional guides running that stretch. Give them the benefit of the doubt and save the party for later.
“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.”-Ed Abbey
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Old 09-28-2015   #9
silt, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 13
The more I encounter commercial boat guide's the more I develop a bad opinion of them. For some reason they seem to think they own the river. We were running West Water a couple of week ago and a commercial trip lost two ladies in Skull. The ladies were trapped in the room of doom, and the commercial leader was yelling at them to swim back over to them. Thank god we pulled up and told them that was stupid and that they had to go get them. After two half ass attempt of going across to get them, me and friend rowed up skull and across to retrieve them. come to find out they had a motor rig with them. I know not all commercial guides are bad but seems to be a bad attitude attached to some of them.
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Old 09-28-2015   #10
Donkey Punch
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Southwest, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 78
Emmielou - I don't care how you dress it up, if someone starts barking at me first being a pompous ass-hat instead of asking nicely, I am definitely going to call them out and tell him to kick rocks.

I wasn't there, and it annoys me when someone is lollygagging around. But no one had the right away and I'll be damned if someone comes at me screaming, and telling me to move my crap. I can give two shits if your a commercial company, or you don't celebrate a great trip with your customers, or your in a hurry to dump them off and get rid of them. If this scenario really happened, it was unprofessional period, no matter the profession. I don't care if you serve ice cream for a living, you don't act that way!

And then for you to say "but the reality is these people have far more experience than almost any private boater on almost any stretch" what an ignorant presumptions thing to say! Im guessing you were the guide screaming at everyone!?!?

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