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Boof it like you stole it
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Has anyone used the train support for the Upper A this year? Do you still need someone to ride the train, or are the commercial boys thirsty for beer and eager to help??? We are two couples, all in kayaks, so asking for raft support is a little too much.
I'm not having much luck finding a website with real information about baggage drop offs. Help!?
 

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Coordinate w/ a comercial if you can. Beer usually does do it. If you have no one at the drop it may not get dropped, or it will get thrown. best to have it worked out. This is not one of the things the train likes to do, so getting info, even from the front desk, can be hit and miss.

When are you going?

E
 

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Boof it like you stole it
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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Parker
We are looking to stay Saturday night. Do you have any experience with a helpful rafting company?

I was also thinking about previous posts on the Buzz, and if there are any nude rafting trips going to the Upper Animas this weekend, you'll probably need at least 4 safety boaters. We won't be 'going commando' ourselves, but you should have plenty of room for our gear if you're not packing any!
 

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no tengo
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I don't mean to be mean by any means, but the expenses for a commercial upper trip are not trivial. to run any single upper trip can easily run over $1000 for food, driver, gas, train tickets, guides, safety boaters, insurance, payroll taxes, income tax, permit fees, equipment. you think a 12 pack is worth it for us?
 

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Boof it like you stole it
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Discussion Starter #5
Definitely not trying to take advantage of anyone, or any company.

I've worked with rafting companies from East Coast to West, and the companies that I've been involved with usually charge a fee to the customer that should easily cover the $1000 expense for food, driver, gas, payroll taxes, IRS Audit, and asian massage. Usually, river guides are there for the adventure, experience, lifestyle, and enough $$ to run the VW Van for a shuttle after work.

Don't mean to be mean, I'd like to know what company 'mania' is ASSociated with, so I don't bother them! Times are changin!
 

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I think what he is saying is that there are a lot of logistics and responsibility associated with getting gear to the train depot, on the train and off the train at Needleton (if that is where you are camping). What happens if the gear isn't there when you arrive - who's fault is that? Is someone suppose to sit around with it until you arrive?

I know the commericals are willing to help support private trips, but I do think it is worth more than beer to do so. The margins are tight on those kind of operations and I think the commercials get a little offended when you suggest they help with little compensation. We are paying our fair share for our private Upper A trip this week.

Why don't you go self-support expedition style or make a friend at the depot who would take your gear off the train. Plus how are you planning to get your gear out of the canyon?
 

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Uh, YOU were the person who was looking for something for NOTHING. Get a clue. The world doesn't exist to serve you. Didn't yer mammy tell you that?


Definitely not trying to take advantage of anyone, or any company.

I've worked with rafting companies from East Coast to West, and the companies that I've been involved with usually charge a fee to the customer that should easily cover the $1000 expense for food, driver, gas, payroll taxes, IRS Audit, and asian massage. Usually, river guides are there for the adventure, experience, lifestyle, and enough $$ to run the VW Van for a shuttle after work.

Don't mean to be mean, I'd like to know what company 'mania' is ASSociated with, so I don't bother them! Times are changin!
 

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ah dsteve that is a little harsh. Its hard for kayakers to want to pay when they 'think' they can do it without a guide but its hard for us to deal with the freeload mentality as well.
 

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OK, I probably shouldn't have brought his mom into it. That was inappropriate. The notion that a small business is getting rich offa Upper A trips is pretty silly... as is the notion that a 12er is meaningful compensation for schlepping somebody's stuff.

ah dsteve that is a little harsh. Its hard for kayakers to want to pay when they 'think' they can do it without a guide but its hard for us to deal with the freeload mentality as well.
 

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Upper A logistics

When this is a guided trip, considering that stern assists are run with a max of 6 ppl plus guide, and possibly a gear boat- there is very little profit margin, even for rafting.
 

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Clearly you rafter-folk are getting your panties in a bunch over this. Maybe you should chill out and have a beer. Hell, I'll even bring you one if you'll carry all my gear for a couple days....:D

But seriously, I second the self-support or one-day trip suggestions. And I wouldn't be surprised if you could find a commercial group to help you out for appropriate compensation (whatever that may be; I definitely know guides that would carry a person's minimal gear for some brews).

SYOTR
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I would suggest going to the train station yourself, find the enlosed group sales office inside the depot and make an arrangement for your party just like the raft companies have to do each time they use the train. You must do this the day before you do your trip! The lady in there knows exactly why you are there and is a relatively painless process unless the AC is out ( which it usually is). Tell her the number of boats and #'s of gear you will be training up and back. The price is the same regardless if it's going one way or round trip. It is charged by the hundreds of #s. 500 pounds is about 50 bucks so you can throuw a lot of camp supplies up there. If the rafting companies have a trip they will probably throw your stuff off the train, if not the conductor will throw your stuff off. They are in a hurry so if you have gear that will break like whiskey bottles, they might. Don't count on your stuff being clean so put them in bags you don't mind getting black soot all over them. Label your gear Needleton and it will get there. Your kayaks can go on the train at the Tacoma Power plant stop. You only have one chance to catch that train. It is at 440pm. If you are late you won't get your stuff on the train. If you run rockwood box you can beat the train to the Rockwood station and maybe load your stuff there. Don't qoute me on this part cuz they change this rule every year. otherwise you must go to the trainyard in Durango and retrieve your gear in the dirtiest place in town. The entrance is behind the mickey-d's and over the tracks. be cool back here or you won't get your stuff until they feel like giving it to you. I ran trips up there for 12 years. I never had a kayaker load there stuff with my stuff cause it costs a lot of money and everyone is right; margins are tight on the upper because of the train. Tickets alone for clients and guides often ran me over 700.00 w/o the freight charges on top of it. So pony up and pay the train or do it light and overnight with minimal gear and you won't have to camp with a bunch of crazy rafters.

Good luck dealing with the train.
Cheers!
Mike
 

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Train info

HullFlyer has the best info I have seen so far on this tread. Personally speaking from someone who worked for the train, your beer might be better used in the train yard in Dgo to quickly get you gear back. The yard is usually really busy with tourists and a couple cold ones after a 12-16 hour shift will usually pick up the pace for the yard hands. (I know I appreciated it!!!) If you are looking for a commercial company to help out, I suggest using Southwest Whitewater. Rory (the owner) is a good guy and will take care of you. If you need a good raft guide for the trip, ask for Charlie!
 

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Boof it like you stole it
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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks all for the info! I guess the question I really wanted to ask was, "Should we self-support, or is the train too easy to pass up?" Now I have some good info to go on.
Its hard for kayakers to want to pay when they 'think' they can do it without a guide but its hard for us to deal with the freeload mentality as well.
FYI - I'll be at the bottom, holding a throw rope for ya! The last guide I roped out was at the Gauley. Before that, Sixmile (AK), Upper Yough, and there was a 2 mile evac. on the Chattooga where a guide broke his leg. I haven't been boating since the 1800's, so I'm sure your stories can far surpass mine. Then again, kayakers are just a bunch of freeloaders.
 

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Thanks for the chuckles. You are a really FUNNY guy.



Thanks all for the info! I guess the question I really wanted to ask was, "Should we self-support, or is the train too easy to pass up?" Now I have some good info to go on.

FYI - I'll be at the bottom, holding a throw rope for ya! The last guide I roped out was at the Gauley. Before that, Sixmile (AK), Upper Yough, and there was a 2 mile evac. on the Chattooga where a guide broke his leg. I haven't been boating since the 1800's, so I'm sure your stories can far surpass mine. Then again, kayakers are just a bunch of freeloaders.
 

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Boof it like you stole it
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Discussion Starter #16
I do have an extemely smart......ass. But, I always carry a rope, and have used it in some needful circumstances. Safety third!
 

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FYI - I'll be at the bottom, holding a throw rope for ya!
boofyak. i dont doubt your skills and I will take your throwbag but you should hear the number of requests we get from kayakers who want to 'follow' our commercial trip (for free) so they know where the scouts are and take advantage of our train and safety boater. thats BS. I know thats not what you were trying to do but it does make you all look bad.
 

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Train or self-support

If you have the money, use the train. The Upper A is a very demanding run and you will be tired afterwords. Not the best time to drag your kayaks down the tracks!! :) Good Luck, B safe!
 

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Sorry

Hey All,

It seems I started this post in the wrong direction. I fired off a 30 second respone to a complicated matter.

What I meant by hooking up w/ a commercial group was only for having someone at needleton for unloading of the train. Nothing More. The train does not Generally unload stuff if no one is there to help and accept the gear. Although, as hullflyer mentioned, meeting the boys on the train and hooking them up might smooth over that issue. I have in the past had someone miss the first days boating and run into meet the train.

Hullflyer thoughts about his answer a bit more than I and actually helped w/ good info. I guess I assumed someone would know those steps needed to be taken. Another thing to consider is a place to camp. Mania may shed more light on this, but it is my understanding that Needleton is mainly private property inholdings and you can't just plop anywhere and call it good. And using a commercial camp just because they are not there is a NO NO.

DanaMania has good points about sucking onto a commercial trip. They generally have thier hands full up there and accepting klingons is not thier responsibility. Not to say they are not watching out for folks. I've run those rapids many times w/ a commercial group watching, with throwbag in hand.


I agree w/ wingnut, Use the train. Its way more fun with a light boat and knowing you have a dry sleeping bag, a fatty dinner, and BEER at needleton.

All this said, I am the ultimate maggot. My wife rows the shit, carrys my gear, and usually takes care of these logistics. If I could rent her out I would be rich.

Parker
 

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Boof it like you stole it
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Discussion Starter #20
All this said, I am the ultimate maggot. My wife rows the shit, carrys my gear, and usually takes care of these logistics. If I could rent her out I would be rich.
That's a man who has it all figured out! My wife won't get out of her kayak, but says she wants a raft, and I know I'll be stuck rowing all her gear. Who wants to drive a bus, when the farrari is in the garage?

Parker, I appreciate the response. Kayakers have a mixed reputation, because we are on all different levels. We are great to have around; when we are self-competent, aware, and are out there to help everyone have a good time. But then we all have to learn the sport, so there will always be kayakers in over their head, being a 'risk' to other peoples fun time. It's a ying/yang relationship, and I'm sure you can agree with that.
 
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