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Old 08-10-2011   #1
Andy H.'s Avatar
Wheat Ridge, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,909
Rafting Foxton - What's it like?

Thinking of running a 13' paddle boat on Foxton this weekend. What's it like at the expected flows? Figuring on a crew of about 4 or 5. Also, how long is the run?

Thanks in advance,


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
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Old 08-10-2011   #2
Denver, Colorado
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Andy, my take is that foxton is a rocky creek a little smaller than clear creek. We should have 400 which is a decent med to med/low level which should float a raft, but you should expect some rock hits.

The boulder garden is a couple miles up stream from where the road from 285 t's in to the road along the river. The boulder garden is too tight for rafts, so put in below the boulder garden. Below the garden is a mile or two of class II water. As you get closer to the junction in the road that goes to 285, the rapids start to pick up. Some are twisty and will be entertaining in a raft.

If guys can raft the embudo and the big south, foxton can certainly be rafted. Just be prepared for a somewhat rocky experience. Since its roadside, you can pretty much scout the entirety of the run during shuttle to get an idea of what you are in for. Length is variable, depending on where you take out, but I think you can do a 4-6 mile run if I remember correctly.

It sounds like a fun adventure for the raft team.

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Old 08-11-2011   #3
Denver, Colorado
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From a fisherman's pullout about 1/2 mile above the intersection to Waterton put in is apx. 5.5 miles.The put ins and take outs are not really set up for rafts.The put in 1/2 mile above the intersection has two u shaped pullouts close to the river and usually a porta potty.Waterton put in/ take out has big eddy but you:ll have to carry raft 25 yards or so .The boulder garden is 1-1 1/2 miles above this put in, but it is pretty much flat until the fisherman's pullout,it picks up with half mile of busy II+/III- then a IIIish drop -play wave for kayaks- class III rapid-play spot sequence.It goes flat for 3/8 of a mile then a mile and a half of busY III to IV- depending on flow,III at 400.You could get out here there is an okay to good take out a couple hundred yards below the narrows.If you continue after some flat you:ll get 2 miles of II-III then 1/2 mile or so of flat to Waterton.In a small raft at 400 it will be bony and semi technical but holes will be tiny for a raft,non-threatening.
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Old 08-11-2011   #4
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Indian Hills
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 340
If you are looking for a mellow raft float you should try the South Fork of the South Platte which comes in to the North Fork right above Waterton. It is also a great place to teach people how to kayak. There are two "chutes" Class II-III but nothing that you have to avoid.
With cunning skill like a duck walking a tightrope at night
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Old 08-11-2011   #5
Denver, Colorado
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400 is kind of a borderline level,you could probably do just fine but could be real bony in spots.A small lightly loaded paddle raft with crew willing to deal with potential beaching/minor pins should be able to get down. The logistics are simple for laps if it is to your liking.
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Old 08-11-2011   #6
Join Date: Nov 2005
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Boulder Garden and Lower Foxton are both way too narrow for a 13' foot raft. A 2 man raft may work.

Lower Foxton is a bit wider than the Boulder Garden, but not much. You may be able to put in at the Lower take out, float down to the confluence, and then do Waterton.
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Old 08-11-2011   #7
Land of Lovin, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2006
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And carry a RAFT all the way back up to the confluence? Sounds like a lot of work - bring a cart.
Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. - Voltaire
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Old 08-11-2011   #8
Denver, Colorado
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Other than that year -apx. 5 yrs. ago- that it ran high for a month or so ,I have only seen 2 or 3 rafts up there in 75 + runs. The smaller the raft the better. 400 is pushing the lower limits of doable. Really Foxton has 4 parts:

Upr:Buffalo Crk. to the boulder garden: mixture of flat and II-III ,gets better as you approach the garden ,fewer access points than down stream.

Boulder Garden : most people's favorite part ...lapable 1/4 -1/2 mile of IV- or III low... maze of slots and pour overs.

Middle section: after post BG flat water comes good 2 1/2 mile III stretch, IV- high,good play above 500 ish.

Lower:after a bit of flat , 2 miles of light rapids II -III- ... with a couple good III' s high... good step up from Chutes run on the main SP.... step down from BG and Middle.. flat at end to Waterton.

Waterton would be fun in a raft but carrying back would suck.I have seen only one paddle raft in there.

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