Have a few questions for someone in the know....... - Mountain Buzz

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Old 04-29-2004   #1
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 4
Have a few questions for someone in the know.......

We are planning on boating in CO between May 10-29. Tenatively we are looking at spending the first half of the time in the Durango area and then finishing up our trip in the Crested Butte area.

Here are some the runs we hope to do: Vallecito, Upper Lime, Upper Animas, Wolf, Black Canyon, the Numbers of the Arkansas, the quad crown in Crested Butte along with several others.

- We do not have a 4wd drive vehicle, should we expect problems other than the Slate shuttle?
- What is the likelihood of finding someone to show us the lines on Vallecito in mid-May?
- Are there any other class 4 0r 5 runs you would suggest in these areas?
- Are there roads that may still be closed?
- What is the liklihood of finding shuttles?
- Winter or summer bag (0 degree or 40 degree)?
- Are there any races or events during this time?

In advance, thanks for any info

Adam Griffin

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Old 04-29-2004   #2
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crested butte, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1990
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colorado kayaking

adam, in crested butte, you do not need 4 wheel drive as you can easily hike to the put-ins(obj, daisy)!! there are a fair amount of boaters that will be headed up there....beta, boofs and beers will be easy to come by, just ask anybody with a boat....escalante may be running when you get here.... it is nearish to grand junction.....if you are interested in the BLACK, i would be happy to join you on the trip.... i am familiar with the run(20+ missions)the water is low now but may start to come up soon....i've heard a rumor that they may crank the dam open for 2 weeks allowing 2,000 cfs to smash its way thru there!!!!!...it should have at least 600cfs when you are here...most likely it will be creek boatin' in there!!! the shuttle is one of the worst ever(4x4 is almost needed!)... would you be into a day run?(9-11 hours)... speed run?(6-8 hours) or an over nighter? there are rad campsites(under large rocks)that are safe from rockfall!!call if you like when you get to crested butte or on the ark.....milo 970-275-1890 or email [email protected]
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Old 04-29-2004   #3
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Englewood, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1978
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 882
Here's my take on a few"

- We do not have a 4wd drive vehicle, should we expect problems other than the Slate shuttle?

I don't think it's an issue at Lime, but I know the others should be fine. You don't need to drive across the Slate to do OBJ, either - just ferry over and walk up.

- Are there any other class 4 0r 5 runs you would suggest in these areas?
Gore, Barrel Springs, Gilman and Bailey, but you'll probably only have water on Barrel and Bailey. These are all further north, though.

- Are there roads that may still be closed?
Independence Pass, for sure, but it doesn't sound like it will be problem for you - you'll probably take Monarch over from Gunnison

- Winter or summer bag (0 degree or 40 degree)?
Winter, winter, winter.

I may see you out there, I've got some trips to make by the end of June myself.

Have fun-
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Old 04-30-2004   #4
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 1,303
Yo. My 2 cents...

4WD is not mandatory, but try to have something with decent clearance. I have a friend that drove a minivan for the Lime shuttle, as well as others...

Always bring a winter bag, and bivy sack. The OBJ campsite will freeze waterbottles almost nightly in May. The days should be nice and warm though. Still bring jackets and hoodies, because it can be cold at 9,000 feet plus.

Your hit list looks good but I would add these to your list:

South Mineral Creek - road is manageable most of the way, then hike the shuttle. 3/4 mile of sick clean creeking. Plenty of other stuff to attempt. Can combine it with a day on Lime.

Crazy Woman/Canyon Creek- flows into the Upper Animas at Rockwood. Read the book, I've never caught it but I heard it's amazing.

Entire Crystal drainage!!!- You have North Fork Crystal, Mill Falls run, the Gorge (might be way high), and Yule possibility, as well as road side stuff further down into Carbondale. (The upper shit is 4WD mandatory, but if its running you'll find people to boat with)

Snow might be your biggest slow down while running shuttles since a lot of the roads will still be burried in the high country. Best way to find boating partners is mtn buzz. I'd be happy to show you down some stuff. Since you guys are coming out early I would consider some of the Front Range stuff like South Saint Vrain and Upper South Boulder Creek. Maybe North Saint Vrain too.

Sorry to ramble, will see you here. Call to boat, 303-918-7546.
Kyle McCutchen
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