12' raft on the grand - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 03-29-2015   #1
 
Cleveland, Tennessee
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 5
12' raft on the grand

Taking my first grand trip this summer. It is a quick trip. Only 9 days. 16 people going. 10 in 4 18' rafts. 6 more in kayaks. What do you guys think about taking a 12' aire down so I don't have to share time at the sticks (only be sharing with one other guy)? I took it down the middle fork a couple of years ago and it was above 6' before we took off, but I'm worried it's hole bait on the grand. Will I want the rest on 25 mile days? Is she just too damn small?

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Old 03-29-2015   #2
 
gobigohome's Avatar
 
Golden, Colorado
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 170
I would love to row our puma down the grand especially if I did not have to carry group gear. I have rowed big water and in it and loved it. With that said I have not had the privilege yet of being down the Grand so cannot attest to that specific monster. I have also seen post of someone rowing a mini me with a frame down the Grand. ps the pics looks ridiculous and awesome at the same time.
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Old 03-29-2015   #3
 
InflatableSteve's Avatar
 
Cave Creek, Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 688
I would say go for it. The question about small boats in the grand has been discussed here a few times. You could probably find these threads with a search, but for the most part people said it shouldn't be a problem. If you have the big boats to haul all the other people/gear then your good to go.
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Old 03-29-2015   #4
 
Andy H.'s Avatar
 
Wheat Ridge, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 3,635
Do it. I rowed a lightly loaded 14' boat on the Grand because we had enough 18' boats for all the main group gear, though I carried a couple of other drybags and some stuff. It was a blast because I could run sneak lines on all the big stuff and then on all the other unnamed rapids, got a full butt kicking ride while the folks in the big boats barely felt them. Just remember to rig to flip EVERY day. You'll probably be able to get a kayaker to help you row on the flatwater because those guys are going to be spending some very long days in their hardshells.

David L should be able to weigh in - he usually takes his 13' down the Grand. The Roaring 20s, the Jewels, and lots of other rapids no one ever talks about will be fantastic!

Have a great time!

-AH
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Old 03-29-2015   #5
 
wsmckinney's Avatar
 
Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 78
Yes, do it friend.

I have rowed a 12' RMR twice down the G; March 2013 and January 2014. Charge everything. I flipped in Lava once running down the right, Upset once left down the center, and mile 23 or sumthin splashy hole on the left.

9 days... you'll be happy you have a friend to trade off with.

You are going to have so much fun!
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Old 03-30-2015   #6
 
pagosa, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 6
Little boats in the Grand rock!

Guided a 14' Adventurer as a commercial paddle boat for years and I can recall one very memorable day in Lava rowing a friend's Puma down the right side. With strong kayak support, I'd say go for it.

12'6'' Avon Explorer R2 last November.

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Old 03-30-2015   #7
 
John the welder's Avatar
 
Delta, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1971
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 204
I rowed a mini-me with an oar frame down the grand. One flip in 24 1/2 and ejected in lava . You can do it.
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Old 03-30-2015   #8
 
Colo Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1980
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 701
I would weigh in but I'm busy goofing off at work because TOMORROW I'm leaving for a Grand trip with my little boat!

I really like rowing a smaller boat, even if it's a bit overloaded with my share of group gear.

See had - Take that boat! Keep a good eye open for how other boats are doing in rapids and go where you think you should.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy H. View Post
Do it. I rowed a lightly loaded 14' boat on the Grand because we had enough 18' boats for all the main group gear, though I carried a couple of other drybags and some stuff. It was a blast because I could run sneak lines on all the big stuff and then on all the other unnamed rapids, got a full butt kicking ride while the folks in the big boats barely felt them. Just remember to rig to flip EVERY day. You'll probably be able to get a kayaker to help you row on the flatwater because those guys are going to be spending some very long days in their hardshells.

David L should be able to weigh in - he usually takes his 13' down the Grand. The Roaring 20s, the Jewels, and lots of other rapids no one ever talks about will be fantastic!

Have a great time!

-AH
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Old 03-30-2015   #9
 
Cleveland, Tennessee
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 5
Thanks for all the info! I think I'll take her. I am going to change my set up a bit though. I've been in a seat but am going to move to a cooler and put my drop bag and table in front. I need a spare set of oars and was wondering what you guys thought about length? Using 9 footers now. Going to go to an 8" or 10" mount from a 6". Will sitting higher make another length better? Thanks again and have a blast David L!!!!

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Old 04-25-2015   #10
 
telluride, Moab, UT
Paddling Since: 1977
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 61
Small boats are fun!!

You will do fine. I have rowed a 12, 13, 14,15,16 and 18ft boats on the grand, people run inflatable kayaks all the time. I remember in the mid eighties when I rowed the 12ft boat, small tubed bucket boat, no passengers with huge gear load the boat was half under water at the start and I could only see the red line at the front of the raft!! If bucket boat, bring 2 buckets, just in case, or if you get a passenger to help bail. You will find you have way more options than the big boats, like in house rock and bed rock, where you can find sneak lines on the inside the big boats could not run. Go where the conservative kayakers go when in doubt, lol.

For your oars, probably 9 ft, but kinda personal thing, with a high seat, you might want higher oarlocks to get the right handle height. I sometimes overlap my handles for more leverage for big loads and head winds, so I might like longer oars than other people or a super strong dude would want. They make the 1 ft extender that fit carlisle and cataract oars, $40 each, might be good to consider if you are not sure.
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