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Old 08-31-2014   #1
Castle Rock, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 321
Review of the new Banjo campsite on Ruby

Not a lot of beta on it out yet, so here 'tis. Spent a night there last week. Lots of mosquitoes. Lots, that didn't seem impressed by Deet at all. It looks like they came in with a flamethrower and shovel to start clearing off the brush, because there are large areas of ash cover ground. Okay access from the river, good shade. Might be a nice site in a year or two. On the same bench as the rest of the Cottonwood camps, I think they just decided not to renumber the Cottonwoods so they named it Banjo.

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Old 09-01-2014   #2
Park City, Utah
Paddling Since: 1982
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 493
We actually signed up for it back in April on recommendation from one of the river rangers. It's definitely not ready for prime time. LOTS of mosquitoes! I'm not sure we saw a tent site. Fortunately, there was no one on the river and we moved down to one of first or second Cottonwood sites.

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Old 09-02-2014   #3
durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 47
Just came off Ruby and had Cottonwood 5. Those mosquitos are unbarelable around there. Ran out of bug spray that night and lost a quart of blood. Will not be taking a camp in that area again. There is a swamp behind the camps allowing the bugs to live.
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Old 09-02-2014   #4
nicho's Avatar
North Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 442
just curious, what is feeding the swamp?, I don't remember a swamp there before.
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Old 09-02-2014   #5
durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 47
Ranger said it was the rain. There is a long depression behind the camps that as far as I could see didn't drain out. Found it by trying to take the the kiddo out for a hike up the hill side. At Black Rocks 9 we hiked up Moore Canyon and found some tad poles in pools that were left over from some sort of run off. So there was evidence of water running at some point but too much around Cottonwood to suggest a little rain.
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Old 09-02-2014   #6
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 12
Was the fire ban still in effect when you were there?
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Old 09-02-2014   #7
durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 47
It was recently lifted. With that I had the joy of teaching some newbies that finer art of "pack it in, pack it out". They had a hard time understanding that we use a fire pan and pack out every bit of ash. Something to keep in mind while we are out there. Education for those who don't know and those who "forgot".
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Old 09-02-2014   #8
Plunk your magic twanger!
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New Castle, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 1,105
I launched early on August 23rd in heavy rain. We stopped at the Beaver Tail sites and the mosquitos were thick but couldn't get through neoprene and raingear. Saw three waterfalls before the Banjo site where I had never seen waterfalls before. And five river otters near Rattlesnake! Definitely a lot of rain recently so it's not surprising there is more standing water than usual.
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Old 09-03-2014   #9
durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 47
That would explain it. Thanks
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Old 09-04-2014   #10
Montrose, Colorado
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 70
Also, the high water in June filled some of the overflow channels of the river. When the river dropped, pools remained. Seems the mosquitos are always bad in high water years.

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