Rafting Royal Gorge at 600ish? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 04-15-2010   #1
 
Fort Collins, Colorado
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Rafting Royal Gorge at 600ish?

I know a lot of people raft the Royal Gorge at low water, any tips on what to expect at this level?

I've ran the gorge once at around 2K and was really overwhelmed and do not have plans to return at that level. Just want to make sure 600ish will be a relatively low risk run before taking another chance.

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Old 04-15-2010   #2
 
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Much slower at 600 vs 2k. More time for all moves, not as pushy.
Only downside is lack of options at Sunshine.
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Old 04-15-2010   #3
 
Salida, Colorado
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The gorge at 600 is very different than at 2000 cfs. The big waves and holes you experienced at 2000 will be all gone and those rocks will provide for some technical rock dodging. Sunshine has a tight S move at the top and the hole is still a little sticky and starts to get forgiving around 800. Wall slammer can be an interesting rock dodge and stay off the wall affair. The paddle out seems long at this level and you have to be heads up to stay in the deeper channels to avoid getting hung up on FU rocks. I done it as low as 200 but 600 is kind of my cuttoff before I will break the raft out. Have fun
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Old 04-15-2010   #4
 
Fort Collins, Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich View Post
Much slower at 600 vs 2k. More time for all moves, not as pushy.
Only downside is lack of options at Sunshine.
Is Sunshine the first for second big drop, what would it be like at this level?
Is there a port option?

Any other spots to consider?

I would love a much slower trip in RG, the last time went by so fast we has no time to enjoy it.
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Old 04-15-2010   #5
 
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Denver
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we call sunshine at these flows the "trifecta." Very technical.
You have the S move as the entrance. Theres a boulder in the middle and you can enter with a bow left angle and either back paddle, or some people actualy grab the rock to help pivot the boat. Look out for highsides and wrapping potential here. When you get into the rapid, the line is to the right, right thru the hole " el gigante." Very sticky around these flows.
Once you get thru there, it shoots you out right towards the hemmrhoids.
There rest is technical rock dodgin. Overall, a slower trip, but a lot more techy. So, go slow, but carn in sunshine still happens purdy fast. Have fun.
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Old 04-15-2010   #6
 
Fort Collins, Colorado
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Originally Posted by ccombs View Post
The gorge at 600 is very different than at 2000 cfs. The big waves and holes you experienced at 2000 will be all gone and those rocks will provide for some technical rock dodging. Sunshine has a tight S move at the top and the hole is still a little sticky and starts to get forgiving around 800. Wall slammer can be an interesting rock dodge and stay off the wall affair. The paddle out seems long at this level and you have to be heads up to stay in the deeper channels to avoid getting hung up on FU rocks. I done it as low as 200 but 600 is kind of my cuttoff before I will break the raft out. Have fun
Do Wallslammer and these FU rocks have a good chance to FU the boat?

We kinda got pinned on Wallslammer for a bit at 2K, but was able to get off before getting swamped. Boat was ok that time, but does Wallslammer have rebar at low level?
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Old 04-15-2010   #7
 
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I'd wait until at least 800cfs. At that point you don't have to s-move in sunshine and everything gets pretty straight forward.
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Old 04-15-2010   #8
KSC
 
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Boulder, Colorado
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Sunshine is the crux at low water. You can walk it easily on river right. The hole is sticky. The move is probably III+ or IV-. Other than that whitewater is tame in there at this level - nothing over class III. If you're a solid class III boater you're probably good to go. If you're hit and miss class III boater, then yes there are places in the narrows (is that what they call it? Near the bridge...) where there is plenty of rebar in the river and it could get unpleasant being upside down. I don't recall any at Wallslammer in particular but it's bony. Doesn't seem like Wallslammer is much of a hazard at this level in that it's easy to avoid.
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Old 04-15-2010   #9
 
Salida, Colorado
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Originally Posted by Red West View Post
Do Wallslammer and these FU rocks have a good chance to FU the boat?

We kinda got pinned on Wallslammer for a bit at 2K, but was able to get off before getting swamped. Boat was ok that time, but does Wallslammer have rebar at low level?
That whole section through the narrows and wall slammer has metal to watch out for on both banks but easy to avoid just stay in the middle. No metal on the WallSlammer itself. The fu rocks wolnt hurt your boat just your patience.
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Old 04-15-2010   #10
 
Frisco, Colorado
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We ran it last sunday in a 14' oar rig. Sunshine was a little sticky but runable no problems. Your going have to make the S at sunshine give it another week or two and you'll be able to run the left side. It is a boulder bounce and the narrows do have all of the rebarb and metal exposed at this level. Wall slammer is not a problem. If your a confident class 3 boater you shouldn't have any problems just don't hit any rocks to hard. Your going to want to be on your toes the whole way with lots of rock a inch or two below the water.
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