Matt Gerhardt Photography

Whitewater Blog Category: Kayaking

Self Support Kayak down the Grand Canyon

Nothing like a trip down the Grand Canyon in a kayak! Ten days and 225 miles on the river with a group of friends for great kayaking, hiking and camping! Mix in a well timed High Flow Experiment (HFE) release of 36,000cfs and now you get a premier big water trip!

Lees Ferry Put-in Lees Ferry Put-in

Here is the release from Glen Canyon Dam:

The powerplant can release a maximum of 21,000cfs, so they ramp up to that and then begin opening one overflow tube per hour until they get to 36,000cfs. The entire ramp up process happens in about six hours. We were on night 5 about 90 miles into the trip when the high water hit us. When we got to camp in the evening, the river was running 6k-9k cfs, when we woke in the morning, the river was flowing at the full capacity they were releasing and then some.

High flow taking over camp. High flow taking over the Crystal Camp. Whitewater for breakfast!

What better place to have high water hit us than Crystal? We were impressed with the amount the river rose on the shoreline that night. We heard a rumor it would rise 4ft, try more like 8-10ft (I think Cruise said 20). The water took over camp, there was some 5am boat and tent moving that had to take place.

This was the possible release plan:
Possible HFE Release

And this is what actually happened:
Lees Ferry HFE 2016

Here is a short video from Lava. The first clip is Cruise gutting it down the middle. He is so small out there!

Featured image photo by Matt Gerhardt.

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Early Season Snowpack

It’s December 22, 2015 and so far this winter is shaping up to be a great one.  About 8″ of fresh snow last night with 15″ in the last 72 hours. Current base at Purgatory Resort is 42″.

Snow Stake

Possibly 2-4 feet more on the way this week!  We will keep you posted.

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Durango Rafting Video

Here’s a quick little edit I put together of some footage we shot last summer. This short video shows all the rafting options that we offer.  Join us next summer for family friendly or high adventure rafting in Durango and Telluride, Colorado.

 

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Pacific Southwest-Baker’s Box in September

Baker's Box-Animas RiverAfter 5 years without a fall boating season in Durango, we were treated to 3 weeks of uninterrupted kayaking in September. Although most days were spent deciding on whether to go Valle or Bakers, 2nd gorge of lime and Crazy Women missions went down. Here’s some Gopro action of Joel and Myself enjoying Bakers at a juicy 1200 CFS.

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Which Whitewater Experience is Right for you?

Whitewater activities are an experience of a lifetime. They create an environment of excitement that gets your adrenaline pumping. If you have never ventured out of your comfort zone to get into the water, this summer is the perfect opportunity. How do you decide which whitewater experience is right for you?

Rafting, kayaking, stand-up paddling are some of the most popular and trendy water sports. All of the types are different and require different types of skills, so sometimes it’s best to get a feel for each one
to learn what best suits you.

Rafting can involve water with rough and large rapids, or calmer water with minimal rapids. This is a great adventure if you have a good amount of people that want to participate. Guides are there to help you enjoy the experience and learn how to properly paddle. They can also make your trip challenging or relaxing with just with a few different strokes of a paddle.

Kayaking is great for getting a good view of the area around you. You can kayak single or in tandem, exploring different waters. This can be relaxing or exhilarating, depending on the type of water course you choose to take. Kayaking is the most popular form of canoeing.

Stand-up paddling is an emerging sport that comes from the Hawaiian heritage. It began as a way for surfing instructors to manage large groups while teaching them how to surf. Today it is more of a hobby and a sport, generating a great workout at the same time. This requires a lot of balance and core skills and you can stand-up paddle with quite a few people. An instructor will be able to help you figure out when to stand up and how to get yourself going.

Canoeing is another whitewater experience that is easy to enjoy. It requires the skills necessary to raft as it engages every part of your body. It requires a single-bladed paddle, and is quite similar to kayaking. Canoeing can be made an easy sport on a calm river, or a difficult one if you paddle down extreme expeditions. Canoeing is gaining more popularity because it has a higher difficult level requiring more technical skill.

Those are four of the most popular water sports that people experience over the hot summer months. Starting off simple and gaining a better education for each sport will benefit you greatly as you grow as a whitewater enthusiast. All of these provide you with an adventure unlike other sports while providing you with a great body work out.

About the Author:
Rolling Thunder River Company is pleased to bring you this article on which whitewater activity is best for you. Rolling Thunder specializes in Nantahala rafting and Ocoee rafting, and offer a wide variety of water sports. If you are interested, check out their website today.

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