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Old 03-28-2015   #1
jacy's Avatar
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 29
CO camping runs with kids?

We are planning a late summer Ruby Horse Thief trip, but I'd be interested in any other suggestions. We've also considered State Bridge down. By kids, I'm meaning a 16 month old and 4.5 year old. We are mostly looking at float, camping trips. If we do a day trip, we'll hire a sitter. Thanks!

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Old 03-28-2015   #2
montrose, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 326
Escalante to Whitewater on the Gunnison is a good kid float. The drawbacks include loud train noise at some camps and a crappy take out with a history of vehicle break ins. Also check out the White River when there is water.

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Old 03-29-2015   #3
Eagle, Colorado
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 46
Hey Jacy,

State Bridge down can be a good one but there is a fair amount of noise from the train, same as Delta to Whitewater and Ruby. The North Platte from Six mile to Bennett is really good, probably run that before middle of June this year if the current weather pattern holds true. Not technically CO but put in is basically CO/WY state line. I'm not positive on what my family will try to attempt this year but if you would like to try to join up for a trip let me know, I have 2 girls, 5 years and 9 months and we are in the Vail valley.
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Old 03-29-2015   #4
El Chupanibre
Thornton, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1987
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 128
A lot of options between Pumphouse and Dotsero. Lots of company on that stretch, weekdays seem to work out the best.
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Old 03-29-2015   #5
Parker, Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 106
There is not a single river in Colorado I would take a 16 monther on.
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Old 03-30-2015   #6
El Chupanibre
Thornton, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1987
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 128
We us a 16' cat on the Upper C, Browns, Shoshone and the Royal Gorge

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Old 03-30-2015   #7
El Chupanibre
Thornton, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1987
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 128
Sorry 16 month I thought you were commenting about a 16' boat. I would have to agree, I think we started our son at 3 at Glenwood. Wed run Shoshone and pick him and my wife up at Grizzly Creek. There were times I questioned our sanity bringing a 36 month old child with us. We ran into a flipped drift boat on the Upper Colorado with a 4 year old trapped under the craft. It ended well but it was scary. Our son was with us and I began to have second thoughts about my own judgement.
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Old 03-30-2015   #8
GWS, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1992
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 486
I see nothing wrong with taking infants on a trip like ruby, ww-hittle bottom, state bridge down... Provided that you are river savvy and have another adult besides the rower. We had our kids on multi day trips from 4 months old and on.
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Old 03-31-2015   #9
Telluride, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1990
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 9
Moab Daily was our go to for the kids for day trips, multi day was Ruby Horsethief. My youngest was 6 weeks old on his first trip. I think they were 3 before doing Pumphouse down.Another favorite day run for young ones is San Miguel into Dolores, the Hanging Flume. Usually only a May-June run. All depends on your skill, their mood, the weather, and your patience! Did a 4 day low water Rogue trip this fall, mixed weather and they had great attitudes. Glad I started them early. Even my 7 yr old is starting to row on mild class IIs now. Makes me happy!
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Old 04-01-2015   #10
Buffalo, New York
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 109
I've have seen infants in pack n plays strapped into 14' rafts on the San Juan. Thought that was so cool until I had my own kid and discovered how fragile they are. I didn't feel comfortable taking her on the river until she weighed enough to fit in a pfd. Even with that and my wife hovering over her, she hated the pfd and I realized that I would wait until she could tolerate that, just like I had to wait to put her on my bike until she would tolerate wearing the helmet. Even on a mellow stretch I could run blind folded I wouldn't want her near water without a pfd. This summer I may try another day run and she'll be almost 3. Every kid, family is different. I have a lot of river experience, but will start more hiking this year with some tent camping in the back yard and build up to the river. Just my 2 cents. Good luck

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