Boat recommendations, Middle Fork Salmon, June 15th - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 05-06-2019   #1
 
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Crested Butte, Colorado
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Boat recommendations, Middle Fork Salmon, June 15th

Got invited to run the MF june 15th and I'm trying to make some plans......I suck at plans and there's always so much good advice here. Soooo here's the story:

I have a 9'6" saturn self bailer with an oar frame, 12' hyside cat, 14 ft' self bailer and currently have access to a 16' Sotar ,with a PRO frame just like the ones they rent you for the Grand, because I'm storing it for a friend. I'm Driving from Crested Butte Colorado. Heres the twist (not like Rogers "twist") launch the 15th, take out the 21st and I have to be in San Diego by noon on the 22nd for a wedding. I'm thinking of flying out of Salt Lake the 21st after we take out Slipping into the wedding and then flying back to Salt Lake the 23rd and then driving back home. I don't want to leave a trailer full of gear at the airport for 2 days while I'm at a wedding in Mexico. With the 9'6" or the cat I can throw my gear in the back of the truck. I don't have racks so if I take either of the bigger boats I would need to either brake down the frames or try to get someone else to bring them back for me, which shouldn't be a problem.

So I guess my question is: Am I crazy to even think about bringing a small boat at that time of year?

I am very good a flipping and re-flipping my small boats but I'm used to the Colorado where its mostly pool drop and not continuous stretches of whitewater for miles.

That's my story/dilemma I would appreciate any(most) thoughts.

Thanks Flite!

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Old 05-06-2019   #2
 
Salt Lake City, Utah
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If you need to store your raft and trailer, I have a driveway you can put it in . I live in Slc. Doesn’t matter what size of boat
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Old 05-06-2019   #3
 
Ft jones, United States
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The first thing to consider is, will the road to Boundary Creek be open by then??
Probably, but no guarantees. There's still ~4' of snow on the Banner Summit gauge.
Second is water level.
It'll likely be plenty high still.

I ran it 2 years ago on the 22nd of June (similar snow-year) at 6.6.

My HEAVY 16' SOTAR felt pretty small plowing thru some of those holes in Powerhouse, and on the lower river.

I personally wouldn't anything smaller...

Ben
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Old 05-06-2019   #4
 
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Grants Pass, Oregon
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My choice would be the 14' self bailer. Then you would need to find a place to park it.

You could pack light, go with the 12' cat and just plan on a rodeo.
. . . which may never happen.
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Old 05-06-2019   #5
 
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at my house, Montana
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Take the cat! Go light and dance around the holes.
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Old 05-06-2019   #6
 
Fraser, Colorado
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Hmm, I am truly sorry for your predicament.

When I ran it last year, about that time, I think I would have been pretty happy in a small cat, but it was only about 3 1/2’.
Sounds like it could be much bigger this season.

I think this is going to be a tough call, until you get closer, and have a better idea on B.C. road, and what flows will be like. Tandersons offer could be pretty awesome, or you could invite someone else from Colorado, who has a trailer? Bet somebody would be happy to sherp a boat back, for mfs spot?
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Old 05-06-2019   #7
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Bellevue, Idaho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BenSlaughter View Post
The first thing to consider is, will the road to Boundary Creek be open by then??
Probably, but no guarantees. There's still ~4' of snow on the Banner Summit gauge.
Second is water level.
It'll likely be plenty high still.

I ran it 2 years ago on the 22nd of June (similar snow-year) at 6.6.

My HEAVY 16' SOTAR felt pretty small plowing thru some of those holes in Powerhouse, and on the lower river.

I personally wouldn't anything smaller...

Ben
Sorry Ben but two years ago was nearly double the stored water as snow or SWE. Today 21.9. 2017 was 36.2 on the same day. Last year was 16.8 so much closer to last year snowpack, than two years ago.

I can also say unequivocally that the road will be open. It will likely be open by May 19th. Which is a date I have that I am turning in soon to launch with a buddy on June 1st.

(editing to add: it will likely be Able to be opened by May 19th. Depends on how hard you want to work.)

I am predicting water level around 5 feet or somewhere south of that by then. Maybe even down to 4 feet. And the fishing can be damn good if it's clear so bring your gear.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lhowemt View Post
Take the cat! Go light and dance around the holes.
I would agree with Laura. The cat would be really fun. Especially if you don't fish or have someone in the boat to row you so you can fish on the flatter sections. Other than I would bring the 14 footer. I always run a 17 but I am lazy and like to fish. And bring lots of crap. And two or three people. You get the idea. Going to be wicked good fun.
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Old 05-07-2019   #8
 
Eagle, Idaho
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Originally Posted by carvedog View Post

I am predicting water level around 5 feet or somewhere south of that by then. Maybe even down to 4 feet. And the fishing can be damn good if it's clear so bring your gear.
We have a June 26th launch, can you share recommendations for fly fishing setups? Thanks!
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Old 05-07-2019   #9
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Bellevue, Idaho
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Originally Posted by jpurkiss View Post
We have a June 26th launch, can you share recommendations for fly fishing setups? Thanks!
I think the fish are more aggressive earlier in the year. They haven't seen five thousand casts by then and they seem hungrier. I like to throw big patterns into more turbulent water than the calm flat pools. That can work too but big hoppers, salmonfly patterns, big madam x ...whatever with lots of float will work. Big caddis too. I like the clipped hair or Goddard maybe its called, but the regular patterns will work too. Bigger.

great time of year to fish.
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Old 05-07-2019   #10
 
Eagle, Idaho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carvedog View Post
I think the fish are more aggressive earlier in the year. They haven't seen five thousand casts by then and they seem hungrier. I like to throw big patterns into more turbulent water than the calm flat pools. That can work too but big hoppers, salmonfly patterns, big madam x ...whatever with lots of float will work. Big caddis too. I like the clipped hair or Goddard maybe its called, but the regular patterns will work too. Bigger.

great time of year to fish.
Thanks, that is very helpful. Hopefully, I can return the favor.
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