First Verde Float, need input. - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 01-30-2009   #1
 
Silver City, New Mexico
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Jan 2009
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First Verde Float, need input.

Hi. New to forum. Some great info here. Planning a Verde float this spring from Beasely Flat to Horseshoe Lake. Have talked to and reviewed Dexter Allen's excellent guide. 3-person party with experience on remote rivers in western AK rated up to class III using 1-man Watermaster kickboat rafts.

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The Water Master

Looking for any advice or tips re: recommended flows, timing, fly fishing opportunities, putin/takeout access, etc. Thanks in advance.

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Old 01-30-2009   #2
 
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four corners, New Mexico
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Zebra-

Check your email, I don't have PM.

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Old 01-30-2009   #3
 
flagstaff, Arizona
Paddling Since: 2001
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Verde best ran above 800csi, you can do it at about 300 but it gets pretty bony then. As far as puttin go, no doubt beasley flats. Take outs are:
1. sheep crossing (rough rough road, high clearance vehicle needed) no reservoir to paddle through
2. horse shoe reservoir must paddle if lake is full 8 miles flat water.
Approximate shuttle time 5 hours
fishing, great catfishing almost anywhere
recommended time monsoon or spring run off
awesome river with a lot of great scenery and some good rapids to go with it.
Don't get punked by punked rock and what out for a lot of strainers
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Old 01-30-2009   #4
 
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Littleton, Colorado
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Careful

Our Verde trip last year was sweet... and not. We camped at the hot springs- had the place to ourselves until we met the lunatic who lives at the farm upstream. We were dipping in the skinny when he charged down the trail with a Colt .45, demanding to know who had stolen his canoe. We told him we saw a hispanic guy in his canoe at the hot springs earlier. Turns out that guy was a farm hand who worked for the lunatic... dude shot him in the leg later that night! And then... we finished our shuttle to find someone had burnt our motorcycle to the ground at the put-in. Serious downer to the end of the trip. You might ask to park in the Rangers lot across the street. Great trip tho... wont forget it.
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Old 01-30-2009   #5
 
flagstaff, Arizona
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Definitely be careful near the hot springs, also sorts of interesting characters....I would recommend not camping near the hot springs. That sucks about the motorcycle burning up. Was that at the beasely flat put in.
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Old 01-31-2009   #6
 
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Christopher Creek, Arizona
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Dex is also the river ranger for the Forest Service. He spends about a week a month on the Verde working projects. He is always looking for volunteers.

The shuttle is best done by one of the trusted locals. Beasley to the dam runs about 130. It has been my experience that the Childs area (hot springs) is best just visited and then find camp downriver away from the weirdness that comes with that place.
Bring good meat to grill as mesquite wood is not hard to find.

The only spot the river might approach a IV is at the pre-falls-falls area. Any flow over 800 will be fully boatable with your setup. We floated a 14' oar boat last weekend on a 3000 flow and had a ball. Check flows at: watershedmonitor.com

The river is full of smallmouth bass and flyfishing opps abound around the big rocks in the open pools.

Do you know of a reliable vehicle shuttle person that offers service on the Gila? I am interested in the reach from the cliff dwellings, middle box, and lower box. I know a guy in Safford but he wants a ton to do the shuttle on the upper.
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Old 01-31-2009   #7
 
Silver City, New Mexico
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thanks to all for input.

fdon, i used to live in scottsdale, now live in silver city. i haven't found anyone locally here doing shuttles. i floated the lower box last spring, great scenery and lots of wildlife (see pic of sheep watching us as we floated under them). hope to do upper run this spring. email me and when you get a plan together i'll try to help out if i'm in town. Click image for larger version

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Old 01-31-2009   #8
 
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Christopher Creek, Arizona
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zeeb, I appreciate your offer. Whats your contact em? The Gila flows are usually in March. That wilderness 40 mile section is a pure gem. There are no rapids over a II but the run is constant, powerful and challenging eddy lines, fast water and the most drop dead scenery ever. The camp beaches are "throw your gear onto the beach" type and there are a number of hot springs along the way. There is a fellow in Silver City who will do a shuttle for that section for about $80. He does not want to do the vehicle drop into Safford for the entire ride through the two boxes however. A self-shuttle would be big from Silver City to Safford. Don
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