Seeking Information on South Platte and Clear Creek - Mountain Buzz

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Old 06-23-2006   #1
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 5
Seeking Information on South Platte and Clear Creek

Hi all you "in the know" boaters,
I am visiting friends in Denver over the 4rth of July and want to get in some kayaking. Some sections of rivers that look fun are 1. Foxton section of the South Platte 2. Waterton (is it worth the hike?) 3. Upper Clear Creek (Kermits to 119/6) 4. Lawson to Idaho Springs (is it worth paddling past Dumont?) Any decriptions/opinions of difficulty, character, playability, etc. would be appreciated. I have never paddled these and have only "picked them out" of AW and books. I am from Ohio. Thanks in advance. I am a strong Class IV boater.

Happy Paddling

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Old 06-23-2006   #2
I kayak DH.
Waterwindpowderrock's Avatar
Greater tri cities metro area, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 794
Foxton is pretty easy, but fun. waterton is worth the hike if you haven't done it before, it's a pretty canyon.
given the choice between upper & the lawson run of clear creek, I'd take lawson, and it is worth paddling down to town, one of the better rapids is right at the beginning of town.

also if you're a solid IV boater for the lawson run put in about 1/8 mile above the hole there's a pullout with a BIG rock in it(you'll understand when you see it) if you put in there you get the biggest drop of the run right off the bat.

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Old 06-23-2006   #3
Golden, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 323
Lawson is a definately a fun run, but unless we get some major rain soon, the flows may not hold out long enough. That run gets pretty bony below 400.

If you're a strong IV boater, you might consider Bailey as well. Its dam release and will probably be going when you get here. It has 3 larger (IV+ to V) rapids in it, but they are easily scoutable / walkable. If you hook up with some local boaters when you're here, they can give you beta on it. This forum is a good place to find hook up.
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Old 06-23-2006   #4
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 254

wanderer - i'll give you a little more, although you can find lots on a search here or on -

foxton - good class III - semi-long drive from denver comparred to the clear creek runs - boulder garden, flatwater, some small drops and rapids below -

waterton - a little step up from foxton, but not much for dodging like the boulder garden - worth the hike -

clear creek runs are a little harder IMO, but i'm sure some people would disagree - you didn't mention the lower run, which is probably the easiest - ends in the play park -

if you have any time, go check out the ark - lots of good runs there.

if you want some people to hook up with when you get here, email me - [email protected] - have fun!! - S
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Old 06-23-2006   #5
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Indian Hills, Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,497
With current water levels, I'd do Foxton, Waterton or Baily (so I've heard). CC has 450 cfs in it, Foxton/Waterton nearly twice that. (Clear Creek is low, NF South Platte is High) Boulder garden of foxton is really the fun part, and damn that big pinacle rock on the mountain is pretty! Just stare at it all day.. Lap boulder garden at least 3 times, that's the "action" part of the run. Waterton, worth the hike. Check out the surf hole/wave at foxton road, fun play.

If you have time Arkansas is worth it, even for a day trip.

Have fun.

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