End of season rituals? - Mountain Buzz

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Old 09-25-2017   #1
Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2017
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 17
End of season rituals?

I think I did my last rafting trip of the season this past weekend, and I'm wondering what everyone's protocols are for the end of season. I've read about the storage debate, but I'm wondering if anyone uses any cleaning materials or other methods for storing up the raft for an extended period.

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Old 09-25-2017   #2
Riverwild's Avatar
Salt Lake City, Utah
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 230
I clean my boat with soap and water. 303 the dry bags. Lube my pump. Bleach groovers and coolers. I leave the dry boxes open or closed lid but not latched to protect the gasket, 303 those as well. Take fire pan and cover in bacon grease and put on bbq on high. This seasons the grill for next year. Pull blades out of oars and wipe out any grit. Everything in the kitchen box gets cleaned and repacked.
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Old 09-25-2017   #3
Definite maybe
Weld county, Colorado
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I catch up on all the work around the house that I'd neglected all summer!
"It is fun to have fun but you have to know how"---The Cat In The Hat
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Old 09-25-2017   #4
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Boise, Idaho
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 574
clean everything up and have it ready for next year
"Thats what" - She
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Old 09-26-2017   #5
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2013
Join Date: Jun 2014
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The season ends?
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Old 09-26-2017   #6
Boise, ID
Paddling Since: '99
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 279
Yes, the season ends. And hunting season begins for me. My ritual is a couple days before cleaning day, I dry rub a brisket and buy a couple of growlers of my favorite beer. 2 am the day of cleaning, I fire up the smoker and get the brisket on. Then I go to bed. I get up about 8 am, and check the brisket and make coffee. Then I pull my two rigged boats apart-everything comes off. Then I switch to beer. I check the coal in the smoker. Then I clean the raft and fish cat and 303. Then I pour more beer. Then I roll the fish cat and disassemble the frame, check all the straps and pack it up in the box of the trailer. Then I pour a beer. I go through all straps and ropes on the raft. Replace anything that needs it. This year meant it was time for a new chicken line webbing. Then I pour a beer. Then I reassemble, 303 the dry box gaskets and re-rig. I put it on the trailer and cover it. Then I pour a beer. Then I 303 the dry bags, dry top and dry suit gaskets, and pack everything so it's ready to go. Then I pour a beer and sit in a lawn chair. This puts my brisket at about 13 hours so I check the temp. Still low so I organize all my group gear so next year only takes an hour to load up for a trip minus food and booze and I'm ready. That means stocking the groover box, replacing anything in the kitchen box that is on the list taped in the lid, making sure everything is clean and soap, sponges, spices are stocked, checking stove and blaster lines, bleaching the tables, checking repairs kits and taking the glue out, etc. And, the boat is set if I decide to get a fall trip in or take by raft hunting or fishing. Then I check the brisket. I'm usually 15 hours in and it's ready to be pulled. So I pull it and let it rest and have one more beer in the hot tub. Then I pour another beer and eat a lot of brisket.

That's been my tradition for awhile now. It doesn't mean the rafting season is over. It just means my boat is dialed for next year or next trip, I'm full and a little drunk.

Next year I'm going to put a layer of spar varnish on the square tops so I might need more beer than a typical year.

Here's the view from my smoker a couple weekends ago.
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Old 09-26-2017   #7
Blue River, Colorado
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 79
Originally Posted by NoCo View Post
I catch up on all the work around the house that I'd neglected all summer!
THIS!!! After 303'ing the boat of course.
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Old 09-26-2017   #8
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Dundee, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 730
My kid's season ended a few weeks ago, I have to get caught up on stuff around the house and then I'm back at it in late October. The season never ends in Oregon, it just gets bigger. We had an incredible spring runoff season, followed by a summer full of hot days and plenty of perfect kid boating weather, and now the rains come and the rivers rise! I love my state.
Wishing I was on the river instead of surfing the web...
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Old 09-27-2017   #9
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Missoula, Montana
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Mar 2016
Posts: 68
So nobody preps for the snow? I mean the stuff really traps my raft out back. We need to get a shoveling plan down now since it's stored under tin in the horse pasture. Sure 303 is gonna be a part of it but can you really plan for those snowy fall fishing days enough. Or those warm spring low water days? I cherish my cold weather rafting like the skiers do warm days on the slopes. Rare but precious.
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Old 09-27-2017   #10
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Golden, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 62
The only other thing i would add, is i wash all of my straps in a bucket with woolite, then rince... Once they are dry i will usually repaint the buckles, and then organize the straps.
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