Ark: How low is too low? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 08-09-2018   #1
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 89
Ark: How low is too low?

I was planning to drive up to Numbers today since it had been 250 range all week. Now I see it is 198.



Is 200 cfs worth driving 3 hrs from front range? Last fall I paddled from stealth put in to grass knoll at around 250. Walked around #5 since couldn't see a clean line through rocks. Otherwise still reasonably fun.


But at 200 can you even make a full length run? Royal Gorge is 371. I've never done it below 500. Any suggestions would be much appreciated.

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Old 08-09-2018   #2
 
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Buena Vista, Colorado
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If your willing to make the drive for 250, you might as well still come for 198. Quality is about the same. My cutoff for Numbers is 125, then I just run Fractions. We do that as low as it goes, which was about 60 cfs in 2012. Didn't have to portage, didn't get beached.

I wouldn't put in at Stealth though. #0 isn't worth the flat, shallow water between the Numbers launch and #1. Park at the green gate just before the AHRA pay station (but don't block it) and walk down the old road about 100 yards to the top of #1. I would just go to 5.5, but everything still goes all the way to Miner's Camp or Railroad Bridge.
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Old 08-09-2018   #3
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
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by #0 do you mean the boulder garden above the official numbers put in?


i'm inclined to put in at stealth just because its such an easy hitch. also, given 6 hrs of driving don't mind more time on water. if you follow a good line can you keep from scraping too much between stealth and #1?



also any thoughts on royal gorge below 400 cfs?
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Old 08-10-2018   #4
 
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Buena Vista, Colorado
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Yes, the rapid between Triple Drop and Numbers launch is referred to as 0. The entrance to it gets really shallow and it becomes difficult to stay off the house size rock.

Hitchhiking to stealth is no different than hitching to the turnout for the Numbers launch, they are on the same side of the road and only about 1/2-1 mile apart. Another option is to run from the top of #4 to Miner's. Then the shuttle is entirely on the dirt road, and you get more action than you do from Stealth to #4.

Royal Gorge goes fine at this level, the water will be a good bit deeper than at Numbers, but the shuttle is much more difficult and the run is a good bit longer. The only thing to be aware of is the hole at the bottom of Sunshine. It starts to get pretty sticky at low flow.
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Old 08-30-2018   #5
suigeneris
 
loveland, Colorado
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low flow

As it continues to fizzle how about Gorge at 240 and Browns at 213? Plan on doing numbers but fractions seems a stretch this low but thx for beta Mike.
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Old 08-30-2018   #6
 
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Denver, Colorado
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We ran Brown's last weekend at 220cfs in IK's. It goes, but there are some tricky spots, like the bottom drop of Pinball. You have to make a quick S-move and go up on 2 wheels to make it through the slot. Raft Ripper is also really tricky, but it can be done.
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Old 08-31-2018   #7
 
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The quality of the whitewater is certainly diminishing, but you can still go boating. Browns is getting a bit tight as mentioned, especially in Pinball and Raft Ripper. Numbers still go. #5 has the potential for a hard piton if you aren't exactly on your line, and the middle of #4 is bumpy, otherwise everything is still pretty fun. Top of Fractions is good too, but I wouldn't paddle below Grassy Knoll/Elephant Rock Campground.

Royal Gorge is still good to go at 260 as is Parkdale. I floated Pinnacle to Parkdale with some out of state friends who I put in duckies last weekend. They had never paddled before. Only place that gave anyone problems was the bottom of 3 Rocks.
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Old 09-05-2018   #8
suigeneris
 
loveland, Colorado
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ark

Well at 204 cfs Browns and Gorge were surprisingly fun especially the Gorge. Cool drops and creeky for a small hardshell. Everything goes when this low.
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