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If you do, you should consider redtail avaition out of Moab for a flight back, it's a blast, and well worth the money.

If not, then https://rivershuttleus.com/ seems to be the preferred shuttle company, lot of good reviews here.
 

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The BLM pulled their permit last year, I'm guessing it was due to all the damage complaints, but the BLM won't say why, other than it was not a paperwork snafu as RRT claims...
 

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I spoke to River Runners in Vernal. and yes they are offering Deso shuttles this year. Highly recommend this company. Had a flat once and they got it fixed and back to Green river, saved me a day and a hotel stay.
 

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So...since iam dumb and useless. If you do the redtail flight...you drive to sandwash, un load and rig your boats, then drive to take out (don't know name) then carch a flight at or near take out,, fly back to put in. Right? So you have to pay for for each person on the plane. That's way more than a shuttle service for me anyway at 6 people? People say let there wife and kids do flight but is that with two cars or something? How long is the drive from sandwash to swaseys (that's the take out right) ?
 

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So...since iam dumb and useless. If you do the redtail flight...you drive to sandwash, un load and rig your boats, then drive to take out (don't know name) then carch a flight at or near take out,, fly back to put in. Right? So you have to pay for for each person on the plane. That's way more than a shuttle service for me anyway at 6 people? People say let there wife and kids do flight but is that with two cars or something? How long is the drive from sandwash to swaseys (that's the take out right) ?
The put in is sand wash, the take out is swaseys. To use redtail, you put in, leave the wife and kids with the boat, drive the 7 hours to swaseys, drop all but one vehicle there, OR drop them all and call the taxi in green river and go meet the plane at the airport, fly to sand wash and launch. It's perfect, nobody drives your vehicle but you, which is a good thing especially If the alternative is river Runners Transport.. river shuttles seems to have a perfect record though. The key is not flying any more people than you have to, unless you're willing to pay...
 
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The put in is sand wash, the take out is swaseys. To use redtail, you put in, leave the wife and kids with the boat, drive the 7 hours to swaseys, drop all but one vehicle there, OR drop them all and call the taxi in green river and go meet the plane at the airport, fly to sand wash and launch. It's perfect, nobody drives your vehicle but you, which is a good thing especially If the alternative is river Runners Transport.. river shuttles seems to have a perfect record though. The key is not flying any more people than you have to, unless you're willing to pay...
Just booked two seats with Redtail last week for June launch. Website said minimum 3 but when I called they let me book two seats (though I didn't ask, I am sure they would fill the other seats if there is a demand for them). For total ~$430 that's less than 2 vehicle shuttles including tips. I did the flight shuttle way back in 1994 and recall it was spectacular.

advantages:
YOU (or someone you presumably trust) drives your vehicle (I will chime in that I have used RRT at least 4 other times with no issues what so ever).
scenic flight up the river corridor & nice walk down from the mesa where you land.
potential for early launch for long first day (presuming those at put in can have their act together by time flyers arrive).
cost (marginal advantage).

disadvantages:
have to deal with shuttle from Sawsey's to airport (~17 miles) at start.
need to camp at takeout (extra gear as most of your stuff will be at put in - 25 lb cargo limit per person on flight) or stay in town (additional expense) as flights leave at 7a.
risk of flight cancellation, schedule mishap, or no show: could have dire consequences on trip.
those left at put in are essentially in 'river mode': 1 extra dinner and breakfast, water, beer & propane, all trash goes downriver, no second thoughts on gear to leave behind in vehicle (hope the bugs are reasonable).
potentially another short shuttle at end of trip.

questions for the community:
taxi service? contact info? willing to pickup at Swaseys at 630a?
given the current demand on recreational facilities, anyone know how likely it is to find a campsite available at Swaseys these days?
google maps shows 4 hr/180 mi for returning to Myton and driving mostly pavement, 5 hr/120 miles (~55 dirt) via 9 mile canyon: other drivers experience?
- I drove 9 mile in 1994 and 5 hrs fits my limited recollection and yes, we did have one flat.
any issues with vehicle security during extended park at airport? (I was told by Redtail that it is unattended most of the time).

my 2 cents and thanks for any guidance you can offer!
 

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I've done the flight shuttle four times now over the past 20 years, and it's always been very much worth the money. I have always preferred smaller trips over bigger trips, so the most we've ever had to shuttle has been two vehicles. We would drive back, drop one at swayze's and then drive to the Green River airport, there's never been anybody around, so we just parked out by the side away from everybody and threw our sleeping bags and pads in the back of the pickup and slept there, after the required dinner of cheeseburgers and beer at Ray's tavern in Green River. When we get to the takeout, we would just send the vehicle we left there to go pick up the other vehicle at the airport, and by that time everything was ready to be loaded, and head for another stop at Ray's tavern in Green River. It helps not to be in a rush if you choose this method. Last time I was driving through Green River, there was a taxi at the gas station that said Green River taxi on the side of it, I would imagine the good folks at Ray's tavern in Green River would have all of the information you'd need. Personally, I think your vehicle would be safer at the Green River airport then it swayze's, we never saw anybody from the time we parked to the next morning when we met the plane. I seem to remember, but can't swear to it, that they rolled in between 8:00 and 8:30 in the morning.

I will chime in, and say that out of the three times we used River Runners transport, and this was on the door, not Deso, the first two times they didn't shuttle our vehicles, we called them from the takeout and they came and picked up our drivers and took them to the vehicles, both times it was River legend Herm Hoops doing the driving, may he rest in peace, after they left us the second time, Herman announced that our next shuttle would be free. They caused between 3:00 and $4,000 worth of damages to three vehicles, totally denied that it was their fault, said it must have happened while they were parked at the takeout inside the national Park. When contacted in an effort to make an insurance claim, we found out that they were totally and completely uninsured. The gentleman that I spoke to informed me that their insurance was my insurance. At the time I had a liability only policy, so basically I personally was screwed. There are many stories here in the buzz of the damage that rrt has caused, and some of outrageous prices to fix vehicles that they destroyed driving them down the wrinkle road at high rates of speed. Could be the reason they quit using the wrinkle road three or four years ago. There's not a chance in hell I would let them within 50 ft of anything that was worth anything based on mine, and others experiences. And yes, this was years ago, but many of the damage stories are not.
 

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Yup, that's what I plan. Sleep at the airport, somebody stay with the raft and gear, have a darn nice flight back up river.
Perfect, you're going to have a blast! The flight is truly unforgettable, don't forget to take your camera!
 
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I did the airplane shuttle on my very first trip (CU Kayak Club Spring Break) and we flew. It was such an awesome flight and really cool, I am glad I did it but it has never seemed to make sense in any trips I have done since. Here is how I see it and maybe I am missing something.

1. Cost. Green River to Sand Wash $209 per person. River shuttles is 250 so yes its $40 more but I still have to have as many seats on the plane as there are cars right? So the most I am saving is $40 per person. It seems like the biggest way to save money is to reduce cars regardless of which shuttle.

2. Time. The drive to the put in for me is 8 hours and in order to use the plane I have to drop all my shit and immediately drive 4 hours to Green River and set a secondary shuttle to the airport which is 30 min Rt. To pull this off I have to drive 8 hours/drop gear drive 4 hours/ drive 30 min. I don't / cant drive 12 hours in one day so now it looks like I have to take an extra day off from work just to fit in the shuttle so that's valuable time off used on driiving. For arguments sake if I do make it all in one day and if I round it down to 4 hours of extra driving then I am paying myself $10/hr to drive my rig to Green River. That hardly seems worthwhile to me.

3. Everything else. If I am driving then I am not rigging my boat. I like to have a beer, take my time rigging and generally enjoy the anticipation of going on the river. It seems like the extra driving would be a tiring drag rather than the mellow fun I get hanging out by the river. I know the mosquitos at sand wash might drastically change that but it still seems more relaxing than driving 4 hours. I am also hanging out with everyone on the trip and not sitting alone in my car. Edit: I suppose I can rig in the morning when I get back but it still doesn't feel like fun.

Again this is how I see it but I might be missing something.

Also interesting to hear the issues with RR. Many years ago I got to swaseys in late October (ie no one around) and found that my hide a key was locked inside the cab rather than hidden so I could get in the car. I ended up having to break a window to get in. I did not complain at the time, in part because I wondered if I hadn't given the wrong instructions. Now I am more likely to believe it was their fault.
 

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A few points:
1) using RedTail saves you a small amount, gains you a really nice flight up the river, but does cost you some time driving from Sand Wash to GR. For me it is worth it, and while I have never had an issue with a shuttle company (more on that below), I like driving my own vehicle rather than entrusting it to someone else.
2) I think the GR airport is unattended, but we left a vehicle there with no issue. I would leave all vehicles except one at swaseys. Definitely leave the trailers and any vehicles that you pack gear into at swaseys; so you can de-rig, get packed and then go retrieve your car at the airport after stopping in town for a bite (Rays is the traditional choice; the burrito truck in the old gas station is also a solid choice.). You can camp in your vehicle at the airport. When we did we were woken up twice by the police, but not to hassle us. They were looking for a fugitive who had abandoned a car on the freeway and taken off into the desert. They did not care about us sleeping out there.
3) Don't plan to bring much with you on the flight. In addition to the weight limit, it is about a mile walk down off a mesa from where the plane lands. So you will be carrying whatever you bring. If you have a bunch of random stuff, have a backpack it will fit in. Also, decent shoes are a good idea. Does not need to be hiking boots; chacos are fine but flip flops of crocs may be less than ideal.
4) I have used RRT in the past (on the Yampa and Lodore), have friends who have used them a lot, all with no issues. This is not to discount the experience of others. Just telling you my direct and indirect experience.
 

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A few points:
1) using RedTail saves you a small amount, gains you a really nice flight up the river, but does cost you some time driving from Sand Wash to GR. For me it is worth it, and while I have never had an issue with a shuttle company (more on that below), I like driving my own vehicle rather than entrusting it to someone else.
2) I think the GR airport is unattended, but we left a vehicle there with no issue. I would leave all vehicles except one at swaseys. Definitely leave the trailers and any vehicles that you pack gear into at swaseys; so you can de-rig, get packed and then go retrieve your car at the airport after stopping in town for a bite (Rays is the traditional choice; the burrito truck in the old gas station is also a solid choice.). You can camp in your vehicle at the airport. When we did we were woken up twice by the police, but not to hassle us. They were looking for a fugitive who had abandoned a car on the freeway and taken off into the desert. They did not care about us sleeping out there.
3) Don't plan to bring much with you on the flight. In addition to the weight limit, it is about a mile walk down off a mesa from where the plane lands. So you will be carrying whatever you bring. If you have a bunch of random stuff, have a backpack it will fit in. Also, decent shoes are a good idea. Does not need to be hiking boots; chacos are fine but flip flops of crocs may be less than ideal.
4) I have used RRT in the past (on the Yampa and Lodore), have friends who have used them a lot, all with no issues. This is not to discount the experience of others. Just telling you my direct and indirect experience.
I second the 3rd point. We filled up bills bags with ice and regretted it every step down
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Can't resist a comment,
I'm going to do my 10/12 hrs drive the day before. Sleep in a nice bed, take one more shower. My rafting buddy is my wife on this expedition. Get ice and sundries at a descent little store in Duchane. Drive to sand wash at a moderate speed. I'll probably stay and rig up but may let someone else do it. My wife and I are both pilots, so I usually would opt to fly even if the cost or time wernt an issue. I'm not going back to work.... ever. I'm not rowing against the wind either. May take 9 days to get down.
When we finish this run we'll probably go find another one or fly into the back country somewhere.. just a difference in perspective. ;)
 
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