my return to the desert...suggestions? - Mountain Buzz

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Old 03-31-2010   #1
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 443
my return to the desert...suggestions?

Unfortunatley I have to leave the northwest to actually make money again and am wondering what may be runnning the week of the 18th through the 24th between hood river and colorado. I have considered trying to catch murtaugh canyon then traveling through central utah and ending up at escalante the 24th and 25th. Also toying with the idea of California (but I am afraid I will not leave and starve to death before I realize I am broke). Any suggestions from you guys as to fun runs along the way. I am willing to deviate from a straight path and wander a bit.

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Old 03-31-2010   #2
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 404
You should hit Utah pretty much at the right time if Utah flows well this year. Not sure how the spring will be but it's dumping at the moment.

The below runs should be going, you can check on flows and find partners on

Kayaking Information

This is where Utards talk smack about yaking.

these are 4-5 star runs
Upper Provo Falls (Perfect write up in S Rockies book)
Cottonwood Creek (called Straight cyn in S Rockies for unknown reasons)
Black Boxes (perfect write up in S Rockies)

these are worth hitting
Ogden Cyn (in S Rockies)
Scrambled Eggs Bend (good one not in the SR book)
Riverdale Wave
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Old 03-31-2010   #3
Bozeman, MT
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 107
Idaho! Lochsa, S. Fork Clearwater, Lolo Creek, etc. Always good that time of year.
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Old 03-31-2010   #4
pocatello, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1991
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 471
The murtaugh is likely already done for the year. Ran it in Feb @2500. Not dropping below 500. not worth doing less than 800. Pray for epic rain if you want it to run again.
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Old 04-01-2010   #5
Uzbekibekistanstan, Mississippi
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 449
Never run it, but I hear the Bear River is running off releases in April.
Kayak Idaho
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Old 04-01-2010   #6
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 443
Thanks for the replies utah looks cool. I have had some of those runs on my list for a while. Is the lochsa cranking at that time or will it be too early to see it at a solid (carnage videos on youtube) level?
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Old 04-01-2010   #7
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 13

Obviously, keep your eyes on the gauges, but I think the likelihood of much running in Utah during your timeframe is actually pretty slim. Rivers here typically don't run until mid-late May. While a few things can often start up in mid to late April (Riverdale, Oggie Canyon, Scrambled Egg Bend, etc.), that is sporadic from year to year and I wouldn't count on it this year given the crappy snowpack we have (in No Utah). I'll be (happy, but) shocked if Oggie canyon and Riverdale come up to decent flows at all this spring. That's how bad the pack is. The black boxes of the San Raf are quality (self-support, decent rapids and incredible scenery), but again, usually a later timeframe. I ran it at the very beginning of June in 2006 the last time we had a massive Southern snowpack (which we have again this year). I can't see the upper provo running in April either, and access is probably going to be an issue as the road is not maintained during the winter. You may have luck in So Utah, NF Virgin, Timpoweap canyon, etc. Those are unreliable in normal years so I can't remember when they typically go.

For April, there will of course be the standard runs around Hood (Farmlands, Truss, probably Wind, Little White, etc.). Maybe the Payettes, just north of Boise (not sure if that's too early there or not), Lochsa and other panhandle rivers and creeks (seems early for those too, but others on the thread seem confident the timing is good). Black canyon of the Bear (Grace, ID) on 4/18 - scheduled release.

Hope you find some good boating options, just didn't want you to bank too much on Utah having water.
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Old 04-01-2010   #8
Bozeman, MT
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 107
The Lochsa could possibly get to the ol' carnage level around that time. It's been a bit colder this year than usual. Last five years in a row we've had great flows around then. Usually 3,000-9,000 i think. Pipeline is prime around 7,000. One year we flipped 4 of 5 rafts at Lochsa falls, so you've got carnage potential. Either way it's always fun pretty much any time in April, keg parties can happen if the weather is good, I know I'm bringing one down there soon!
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