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Coming from Oregon.... curious about the Gates of Ladore section on the green in late March.....please share any thoughts on the river at this time (i.e. flows, weather, ice, cold, camps, ease of getting an off-season permit, good beta contacts / phone #or website). I am also looking for the best website for historical data on cfs for this river section. Also, if you have a recommendation for another river section at this time of year that allows for some warmth and sun that you recommend, please advise...thanks!!!!.............
 

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March iffy

I would note that the BLM warns you about possible ice on the Green River in March in Deso-Gray.

http://www.blm.gov/ut/st/en/fo/price/recreation/riverinf/icewarn.html

Deso-Gray is lower in elevation than Lodore, and further south, so Lodore could be colder and have more ice. On the other hand, it is just below the dam, so that could make a difference.

Call Kelly at Dinosaur NP before noon, 970 374-2468, she is probably the best source on Lodore, she has been on that job for a while.

You might look at the San Juan River in southern Utah as an alternative, lower and further south than most options. Those permits are not usually that hard to get, I understand, especially off season. I have done that river in April, not bad.

The Salt river in Arizona is an alternative, further south, but you have already missed the lottery, some of my friends have launch dates. I have heard some folks talking up the Verde, but I know little about it, except there is no permit required. Arizona is a long way, but if you want warmth and sun.....

If you want big waves, look at Cataract canyon downstream from Moab Utah, although March would be lower flow. Permits are there for the asking, anytime.

These are some thoughts, I am sure that other people will have good ideas.

Good luck.

Richard
 

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Rubyhorsetheif & Westwater can be combined for a nice 2-3 day float and are usually free of ice and floatable by the end of March. You will need to obtain two different permits though.
 

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The Salt would be great for that time slot if you could get on a trip, I have been on Cataract in the middle of March and the weather was reasonable. Also consider the Owyhee which is actually in your state depending on the melt. I dont think March is a good time to run the Ladore and with another drought year in the rockies...


Coming from Oregon.... curious about the Gates of Ladore section on the green in late March.....please share any thoughts on the river at this time (i.e. flows, weather, ice, cold, camps, ease of getting an off-season permit, good beta contacts / phone #or website). I am also looking for the best website for historical data on cfs for this river section. Also, if you have a recommendation for another river section at this time of year that allows for some warmth and sun that you recommend, please advise...thanks!!!!.............
 

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The Lower Salmon could be an option. We put in last year on March 30th. It rained off and on and had chilly mornings and nights but during the day was warm and sunny. Put in at Hammer Creek and take out at Heller Bar on the Snake - 4 to 5 day trip or put in at Pine Bar for a 3 to 4 day trip. If you go check the flow, probably don't want to do it if it's more than 20,000cfs
 

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Hells Canyon is low elevation like the Lower Salmon. Could be done. Such a deep canyon I don't know what the sun would be like that time of year. Usually I am trying to stick to the shade.
 

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The Salt would be great for that time slot if you could get on a trip, I have been on Cataract in the middle of March and the weather was reasonable. Also consider the Owyhee which is actually in your state depending on the melt. I dont think March is a good time to run the Ladore and with another drought year in the rockies...
flows on the Owyhee are most reilable for a raft run in late march and early april, that being said there can be sun, for a few moments in between hail, rain, snow, and 50 mph winds that time of year :)
 

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The Owyhee is what you should look into that time of year unless you are into driving far south into utah
 

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If you put in at potash rather than mineral--cataract canyon rarely has ice probs and usually a lot of sun in March.
 

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The Owyhee is what you should look into that time of year unless you are into driving far south into utah
The Owyhee does not have much water yet, that I know of anyway. Most of central Idaho has lots of high elevation snow. The further south you go the less snow and the lower elevation the less snow.

We were trying to do an April trip last year and got shut down for no/low flow.

Not looking much better this year. Could change, we still have some winter left but the birds are already coming back. I sure hope winter is not over.
 

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The Owyhee does not have much water yet, that I know of anyway. Most of central Idaho has lots of high elevation snow. The further south you go the less snow and the lower elevation the less snow.

We were trying to do an April trip last year and got shut down for no/low flow.

Not looking much better this year. Could change, we still have some winter left but the birds are already coming back. I sure hope winter is not over.
A lot of the Owyhee runs were plenty floatable in 2012 in march to early april, but most of april quickly was in the 600 cfs range, good for IKs on all of it, but not for rafts on the Middle Owyee with out a portage at least at Widow maker. 550 to 650 cfs is plenty floatable in smaller 14' and lighly loaded rafts on the Lower Owyhee. I have been on the lower in the 600 cfs range in a fully loaded Aire SDP and found it just fine, even better in fact as the bass are more concentrated and bitty and there are generally less people for some reason, probababy because of the general mythology that below 1000 cfs is generally to low for fully loaded rafts on the Rome to Leslie /Birch Creek run. The middle owyhee (3 forks to rome is my least favorite stretch anyway).
http://waterdata.usgs.gov/nwis/dv?cb_00060=on&format=html&period=&begin_date=2012-03-01&end_date=2012-04-30&site_no=13181000&referred_module=sw
 

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Lodore might be too far to go to in late March while taking a big chance on the weather and ice conditions. That's a cold part of the state and long parts of the river stay in the shade for most all of the day.
 

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We'd often float the john day over spring break. A good early spring venue.

The grande ronde is sometimes an option. But it can be 30 and snowing or 45 and sunny .... pretty variable.
 

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Last Spring Break we did Ruby Horsethief and West Water when Owyhee was clearly not happening. Stretched it out a bit, thank god, we got hit with gnarly headwind one day. Other than that, gorgeous days, cold nights, and frozen water bottles in the morning.

Banking on Owyhee again this year, I really want to get on it!
 
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