May Labyrinth Canyon Beta - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 03-17-2010   #1
 
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May Labyrinth Canyon Beta

I'm looking for beta on Labyrinth Canyon for the 2nd week of May. Leaving Green River and taking out at Mineral Bottom I know you need permits, groover etc, and shouldn't have a problem with gear. I'm looking for suggestions on the following:

Expected water levels for this year?

Travel times on those water levels?

Any suggestion on a guide book?

Any "must do" hikes, activities or camps?

What will the bug situation most likely be?

Shuttle... Can anyone suggest a shuttle service? Any experience with Green River Shuttle Service? Would you suggest taking a front wheel drive Ford Escape Hybrid to Mineral Bottom? How long would it take to do our own shuttle? Are there break in issues at Green River or Mineral Bottom?

Weather, it looks like averages are in the 40's-80's and fairly dry... But??

Wind? Should we expect strong mid-day winds?

Camp situation, especially since it will probably be high water. Should we plan on having to sleep on the boat?

It's going to just be the two of us on an 14 ft raft. Any and all input would be great!

Thanks,

Matt

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Old 03-17-2010   #2
 
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Kelsey Guide

River Guide to Canyonlands National Park by Michael Kelsey provides detailed maps from Green River to Mineral Bottom and a TON of local history as well as locations of any petroglyphs/inscriptions/etc. Makes for good reading as you float the flat...

Jason
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Old 03-17-2010   #3
 
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I'll second the Kelsey guide, lots and lots and lots of info.
River levels will depend on the spring melt off - keep an eye on the usgs site, there's a gauge at green river and upstream at jensen. if the river's up you can move a good 5+ mph just floating. At lower levels expect about 2-3mph. Bugs are dependent on the water, if it rises up and floods out low areas then recedes bring your A1 bug juice (better bring it anyway) along with some hipwaders for the mud, and lots of benadryl.
Stop everywhere- see everything! Kelsey lays it out blow by blow, the river is so mellow that fighting the bugs and getting stuck in the quickmud will sure to be the highlights of the trip.
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Old 03-19-2010   #4
 
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Thanks guys, I will look for the Kelsey's book.

We are doing the trip just the two of us for the first part of our honeymoon so I hope the mud and the bugs aren't the highlight of our trip!

Have you ever drivin the road to mineral bottom? Could we get a front wheel drive Ford Escape down that road?

Thanks,

Matt
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Old 03-19-2010   #5
 
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Mineral Bottom road...

I haven't been down there in a couple of years, but the road is fine for your vehicle as I recall. I took the Tacoma down and back without using 4WD and there are always a ton of 2WD cars parked at the top (start of the White Rim trail). The road is steep but not hairy. There is quite a bit of traffic as well for the remoteness of the area so for the "just in case" scenario you won't be alone!

Call the Moab BLM office at: (435) 259-2100 before you go to check on the current road conditions.

Hope that helps!

Jason
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Old 03-19-2010   #6
 
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The road is sometimes fantastic, sometimes impassable. Rock fall occasionally closes the road (stories of them taking out moving cars as well). The thing to watch out for is if it's rained recently the road is SLICK! If you start sliding at all, stop the car immediately and wait until the road dries (hours, days) before trying to move it. Even if you're on the road and it starts to rain- typically best to stop. If you talk to the commercial drivers out there they are filled with stories about that road. I'd recommend 4wd if you're going to be coming out of there with a trailer. Note that if there is any other traffic there is no room to pass for most of the road. You may get stuck backing a trailer down the thing in a worst case scenario.

I've only been in there during September and October due to bugs. Even though the Colorado river isn't that buggy over all, the Green can get horrendous with mosquitos. I don't know when they typically come out but be prepared- it has quite a reputation.

Camp sites can be hard to find. What is there one year may be gone the next, aside for ledge camps. Though, if the water is low, the mud getting to the ledge camps is extremely thick/gooey/memorable. A good beach one week will be covered in tamarisk the next (not sure how the tamy beetle has done with solving this issue in recent years?). If you find a decent camp site, take it, even if it's an hour earlier than planned!

Spend some time at the Post Office as well as the River Registry. Horseshoe bend is cool to hike up, though somewhat steep and loose if I recall (I think it was better to hike it from the upstream side of the bend?). I'll go dig up my river guide on it and fill you in on more hikes to petroglyphs and ruins if you like. We took custies to some that weren't in the river maps.

I wouldn't think afternoon W[ind] would be too much of an issue at that time of year. Who knows though, be prepared for anything.

Only shuttle service I've used was Road Runner in Moab. Pricey, though the service was good.

Enjoy the run. It is BEAUTIFUL in there!
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Old 03-24-2010   #7
 
Groveland, California
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Tried to buy a copy of Kelsey's book, which looks to be out of print. Does anyone know of a current source for the book?
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Old 03-24-2010   #8
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HPMG View Post
Tried to buy a copy of Kelsey's book, which looks to be out of print. Does anyone know of a current source for the book?
let me google that for you...
Let me google that for you
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Old 03-24-2010   #9
 
Groveland, California
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Gee, thanks peak!

Tried that already and couldn't find a single one for sale, except for Amazon used at a steep $134. Thought someone might know of a store that still carried the book, Kelsey's website even says it is out of print.

Anyone?
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Old 03-24-2010   #10
 
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Ouch$$
there's a store in slc, wasatch something or other that may have it.
hp, pm sent
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