incident on the gunnison? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 05-31-2008   #1
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incident on the gunnison?

not sure what all happened but as we floated down the river today we kept picking up tidbits of information regarding a possible accident on the gunnison river. everything we have heard is heresay from fellow guides and river users but as far as anything concrete i havent heard yet. what we heard was a guy launched this morning with his three kids on the raft from McCabe's Lane, the common takeout for the gunny town run, located west of town. they were headed downstream when somewhere near or before coopers ranch, the raft tipped/flipped (not sure yet) and apparently the guy was thrown out, and he did not have a life jacket. the word is he drowned, but the kids were ok. we saw a whole crew of rescue personnel at McCabes when we took out but they werent readily handing out information, so again i have no concrete info at this point and am just waiting for further news. if i hear any more i will post, anybody else in town hear about anything?

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Old 06-01-2008   #2
 
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News : Man dies in Gunnison River rafting accident (Montrose, CO)
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Old 06-01-2008   #3
 
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Gunnison death

What I heard about the death on the Gunnison is this. 2 adults male and female and three kids, two boys and girl, non family. The man lived in Denver but visited his house on the East river almost every weekend. I do not know his ability as a boatmen. One thing I did hear is neither of the adults were wearing a safety vest or helmet. I thought this was absurd seeing that the Gunnison is pumping at high water right now. It goes to show you that Colorado needs a law not only requiring enough vets on the boat but that the people wear them as well. Apparently the accident occurred in "non usual" area of CLASS II. Respect the river.
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Old 06-01-2008   #4
 
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The flow yesterday would have been about 4300 - that's very high for this stretch.
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Old 06-01-2008   #5
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the article did not mention if he was wearing a PFD or not. If he was not and they did not report it - this is a complete disservice to the readers and the boating community.
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Old 06-01-2008   #6
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Talked to some more folks last night who were near the hubbub....

As far as I've heard from everybody, the guy was not wearing a life jacket. Like John said, it was about 4300 in that stretch, 3400 from the Gunny and 900+ from Tomichi Creek, and that is big for the Gunnison.

As far as the stretch he flipped in......it isnt so much a "non-usual" stretch of river, it's just not the most popular run in the valley, but it is damn scenic. While there are no real wide "rapids", its all moving water, the problem lies within a section i like to call "the bends", where the river meanders back and forth wildly for a couple of miles. Several of the bends are near 180 bends and if you're not paying attention you could very easily get swept into a logjam on one of those banks. That is likely the cause of the "multiple abrasions" reported on the survivors, and he probably took some downtime somewhere in one of those bends.

Condolences to the family, bummed to see #2 go down in my backyard.
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Old 06-01-2008   #7
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrownTrout View Post
It goes to show you that Colorado needs a law not only requiring enough vets on the boat but that the people wear them as well... Respect the river.
Education and personal responsibility is the answer, not more laws. A PFD sitting on a boat is useless. Anyone ever try to put on a vest in the water, moving water no less?

The majority of drownings usually involve not having a PFD or drinking alcohol Combine them and you're creating a recipe for disaster. Respect the river indeed.
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Old 06-01-2008   #8
 
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Colorado Does have a law requiring life jackets on rivers, even in the flat water. in fact it is the only law for private boaters. I think the fine is $100 weather a buckle is undone or just not wearing a pfd.
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Old 06-01-2008   #9
 
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There is no law requiring a person in Colorado to wear a life jacket. You do however have to have enough life jackets for everyone on board. Its the same bullshit mentality that does not require a biker to wear a helmet. The law requires enough vets for everyone on board, common sense says you wear them. Well obviously people are not using common sense. I have boated enough flat water to know that a life jacket can be a pain especially if you wanna work on your tan, well people thats what the shore is for. What is wrong with requiring people to wear their jackets?????? It might be the the difference between a responsible "good" boater and the yahoos who think they know what the hell's going on.
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Old 06-01-2008   #10
 
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From what I have heard, he hit his head on something and did not "hangout" in a log jam. What I meant about non-usual is that when looking at the location of accidents on the Gunnison this place does have any accidents in the past. Most of the carnage occurs around the water park. I am interested to see if officials will close the water park. When you think about it if you mess up at high water around the water park, where are you gonna recover? Private property???
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