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Old 02-12-2015   #1
Salida, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 135
San Juan Beta

Finally got a May 28th launch date for the San Juan. YES!!!!!

Never been before. The info I am reading says to bring all your drinking water that filtering is really hard because of silt. Is this the group opinion?

How many days are best from Sand Island to Clay hills? What other great advice can I gather from the buzzards?

Any and all suggestions are greatly appreciated. It also talks about reserving certain campsites really need some good advice here please.

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Old 02-12-2015   #2
lmyers's Avatar
Buena Vista, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 4,207
Bring your own water and do a layover at Chinle with the Indian permit. Take your time, explore and enjoy.

GARNA’s mission is to foster stewardship of the resources of the greater Arkansas River region through education, volunteerism and experiences.
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Old 02-12-2015   #3
Buffalo, New York
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 109
In May with water between 1-2k probably 8-10days lots of hiking, bring all of the water you'll need, no filter.
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Old 02-12-2015   #4
oarframe's Avatar
Gardnerville, Nevada
Paddling Since: 00
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 447
You can get drinking water in mex hat at Valles or the Trading Post if needed
more snow = more water
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Old 02-12-2015   #5
Paddling Since: 96
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,372
There is good water at the putin (Sand Island). I like Logan's idea of a layover at Chinle. That, and almost all of rio left, requires a permit(s) from the Navajo. Worth it IMO. River House ruins are above Chinle on the right and very worthwhile. There are no Cottonwoods below Chinle and the Tamies are all dead now so bring camp shade. If you are bringing kids on the trip there are some camps that are ledge dropping into deep water and hard to keep kids safe at. In the lower section you have to have assigned campsites from I think Grand Gulch out. Grand Gulch is not a very good campsite, especially with kids. I hesitate to put this on the WWW but we always look to camp at Slickhorn on the next to the last night and Oljeto on the last night. Oljeto is not a good option if there is the possibility of big rain although there is some high ground to escape to in the worst case (flash). John's Canyon is also wonderful. As you have probably heard, if you have low water the last day can be difficult because of Lake Foul sediments. The trick is to remember that the channel is always on the outside of the bend and you just need to find the crossover channel between the bends. Its really not as bad as people say IMHO. Get both guidebooks. PM me if you want more camp info. Love that rio...
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Old 02-13-2015   #6
Wondervu, CO, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 390
The permit for the Indian land is worth the effort. Start your application now, they take a very long time to respond.
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Old 02-13-2015   #7's Avatar
lafayette, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1961
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 491
You lucky dog, you should have decent water to float. Indian permit is a must have . You can get the water to settle for dishes with some alum if you start it as soon as you get to camp (takes a while). I put in myself and of course did not win
Time is like a river. You cannot touch the water twice, because the flow that has passed will never pass again. Enjoy every moment of life on or off the river. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2015   #8
Arboles, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 32
Congrats! Navajo permit greatly expands camping choices and I also second Oljeto and Slickhorn choices; at 2k plus, many of the lower reserved camps flood, but based on snow pack and unless something drastic happens, I wouldn't worry about that. We launch the 21st from MH to Clay Hills and I'm thinking travel light at this point. 4Corners Riversports in Durango has a flockulant solution that works better than alum for settling water; put in right amount of drops, stir for 10 minutes while drinking a beer, then wait another 5-10 and you have 3-5 gallons of settled water. Also safe for drinking as it is manufactured for the store by a water quality/sanitation specialist. Have a great trip!
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Old 02-13-2015   #9
Woodland Park, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 127
I won a june 17th permit but have never done the SJ. Is this going to be drag the boat type flows?
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Old 02-14-2015   #10
GROH's Avatar
Rock Springs, Wyoming
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 47
Have an April 24th Mexican hat to Clay hills. Haven't ever ran this river or researched the flows. Any knowledge of typical conditions that time of year would be appreciated!

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