July & August Rafting? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 07-08-2008   #1
 
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Paddling Since: 1977
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July & August Rafting?

Where can I go on a 3 day/2 night raft trip within an 8 hour drive from Albuquerque in July or August? Prefer Class 3 as I'm kind of a beginner but may be ready for Class 4. I'm worried about minimum flows though.

Will the Dolores have enough water? Should I try the Animas? San Juan?

What are the best places to go that will have enough water? Is the season over??

Bought a 14' self bailer oar rig in May & did the Milk Run on the Arkansas below Buena Vista on Memorial Day (thanks Andy) & got my feet wet. Did the State Park Run and the County Line to Embudo (Rio Grande at Pilar) run the next weekend. 2 weeks ago took my Wilderness Permit & led 12 people (canoes, kayaks, 1 raft) down the Class 3 Rio Chama at 750 flows. It was great but that's about the minimum flow you want with a 14' raft.

Hungry for more. Enjoy the whole camping thing. Will probably do the racecourse (Class 4) this weekend on a day trip, but love the overnighters.

Any suggestions??

Would also love to join other rafters on some Class 4 so I could watch your line.
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Old 07-08-2008   #2
 
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Any suggestions??
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Old 07-08-2008   #3
 
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Durango, Colorado
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Dolores is done. San Juan requires a permit and will be marginal. Your 8 hr limit limits you. And it's getting late in the season. Apply for 2009 permits.

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Originally Posted by mobetta View Post
Where can I go on a 3 day/2 night raft trip within an 8 hour drive from Albuquerque in July or August? Prefer Class 3 as I'm kind of a beginner but may be ready for Class 4. I'm worried about minimum flows though.

Will the Dolores have enough water? Should I try the Animas? San Juan?

What are the best places to go that will have enough water? Is the season over??

Bought a 14' self bailer oar rig in May & did the Milk Run on the Arkansas below Buena Vista on Memorial Day (thanks Andy) & got my feet wet. Did the State Park Run and the County Line to Embudo (Rio Grande at Pilar) run the next weekend. 2 weeks ago took my Wilderness Permit & led 12 people (canoes, kayaks, 1 raft) down the Class 3 Rio Chama at 750 flows. It was great but that's about the minimum flow you want with a 14' raft.

Hungry for more. Enjoy the whole camping thing. Will probably do the racecourse (Class 4) this weekend on a day trip, but love the overnighters.

Any suggestions??

Would also love to join other rafters on some Class 4 so I could watch your line.
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Old 07-08-2008   #4
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Eastern Slope, Colorado
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Ruby/Horsethief and Westwater. 3 days, 2 nights, and exactly 8 hours from Albuquerque. Check out the Weswater Ranger Station's website for permit information.
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Old 07-08-2008   #5
 
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Not sure how long of a drive it is for you but Loma-Westwater or Westwater-Hittle/Moab may be good options.
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Old 07-08-2008   #6
 
Albuquerque, New Mexico
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Thanks all. I appreciate the help while I continue to learn my way around Colorado.

Will apply for everything I can in 2009, and continue to run 3's & 4's on day runs to practice. Moab is only 7 hours, maybe 6 1/2 if you hurry.

I guess for low water stuff I'm gonna have to put the flotation in the canoe & get on the water. I can run 3's no problem in the Mad River.
I may also use this time to schedule some commercial trips to learn to read some water for next year. Bighorn Canyon sounds interesting.

Guess a trip to Salida & Durango (at least) is in order.

Really appreciate the info.

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Old 07-08-2008   #7
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If you have never done Westwater and choose not to do Westwater than you're dumber than those drunk kids that taunted the tiger at the Zoo last year.
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Old 07-08-2008   #8
 
Denver, Colorado
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The arkansas will have water through at least mid august. Good training ground and miles of class III.

Westwater is primo in september / october. Bigger water class III with fantastic camping. One of my favorite overnighters.

Gunnison gorge is a pretty overnight trip, although it can be done in a day. Wilderness with a crappy shuttle, and a 1 mile hike in you would likely want to hire mules for. Its got a few drawbacks, but with dam supported flows, class III rapids, and nice scenery it could be what you are looking for to keep the boat floating through the summer / fall.

Might be over 8 hrs, but I think you can get permits from the Indian tribe to run the last couple of days of the colorado river as it exits the grand canyon into lake mead. Might be a cool canyon experience and probably a nice overnighter.
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