Grand Canyon kayak/raft trip | High Sierra Topix  

Grand Canyon kayak/raft trip

A forum that'll feed your need for exploring the limitless adventure possibilities found in "other" places. Post trip reports or ask questions about outdoor adventures beyond the Sierra Nevada here.
User avatar

Grand Canyon kayak/raft trip

Postby mokelumnekid » Wed Oct 02, 2013 9:14 am

I just returned from a 15 day, 226 mile raft-supported kayak trip down the Colorado from Lee's Ferry to Diamond Springs. It was extraordinary, exhausting, muddy, wet, dry, you name it. The hikes were amazing, the kayaking thrilling to terrifying, the geology and scenery lived up to it's billing. This was on a commercial permit via DeRiemer Kayak Tours with support by Tour West. My wife, who does not kayak but is a monster hiker, went along and joined a cadre of raft folks.

The whole experience was almost too much for an old fart like me (*just turned 61). Between the hiking and the adrenalin rush of the kayaking, dealing with the mud (lots of monsoons) it was a bit much. If I could do it over I would cut out the kayaking and simply focus on the hikes, rocks and the magical/mystical aspects of the place.

Damage Report: lost one paddle, broke a toe, smashed a foot, smashed a hand, took some damage to my boat, and one hangover.

There was a 72 year old kayaker on the trip who had made 22 previous Canyon trips, and three kayaking superstars who were amazing to watch.

Pics of the trip (incl one video) in order by day are at:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/mokelumnek ... 074810343/

I'm the guy in the red boat, red top and carbon 'baseball' style helmet



User avatar
mokelumnekid
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 446
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2008 4:45 pm
Location: Seattle
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: Grand Canyon kayak/raft trip

Postby maverick » Wed Oct 02, 2013 10:59 am

Very cool trip MK, and fabulous photos. Love the color of the red canyon rock, especially
at the golden hours. Thanks for sharing your adventure to this beautiful place. :thumbsup:
HST= Wilderness Adventurer who knows no bounds, except for their own imagination.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org
User avatar
maverick
Forums Moderator
Forums Moderator
 
Posts: 8029
Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2006 5:54 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: Grand Canyon kayak/raft trip

Postby gary c. » Wed Oct 02, 2013 12:56 pm

What an awesome trip!! Thanks for the pics.
"On this proud and beautiful mountain we have lived hours of fraternal, warm and exalting nobility. Here for a few days we have ceased to be slaves and have really been men. It is hard to return to servitude."
-- Lionel Terray
User avatar
gary c.
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 999
Joined: Tue Jan 24, 2006 4:56 pm
Location: Lancaster, CA
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: Grand Canyon kayak/raft trip

Postby BrianF » Wed Oct 02, 2013 1:53 pm

Great pics and what a great trip. I had the privilege 30 yrs ago of spending 15 days descending the canyon on a private raft trip - five smallish rafts . The adventure of a lifetime. Kudos for kayaking it! That is no mean feat, I had enough moments of fear in a raft, I can't imagine being in a kayak in some of those rapids
The direction you are moving in is what matters, not the place you happen to be -Colin Fletcher
User avatar
BrianF
Topix Regular
 
Posts: 283
Joined: Thu Jul 06, 2006 1:29 pm
Location: Santa Barbara,Ca
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: Grand Canyon kayak/raft trip

Postby giantbrookie » Thu Oct 03, 2013 12:10 pm

Wow, that is a serious undertaking. Makes me feel very sedentary sitting back here on my computer. Old? Nah.
Since my fishing (etc.) website is still down, you can be distracted by geology stuff at: http://www.fresnostate.edu/csm/ees/facu ... ayshi.html
User avatar
giantbrookie
Founding Member & Forums Moderator
Founding Member & Forums Moderator
 
Posts: 2439
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2005 10:22 am
Location: Fresno
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: Grand Canyon kayak/raft trip

Postby Wandering Daisy » Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:28 pm

I was surprised (but should not have been) that the water was so brown or muddy. Was that the case or does it just look like that in the photos? At times it looked like you were kayaking in boiling mud.

Great photos. Looks like it was one big party too.
User avatar
Wandering Daisy
Topix Junkie
 
Posts: 2606
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 8:19 pm
Location: Fair Oaks CA (Sacramento area)
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: Grand Canyon kayak/raft trip

Postby mokelumnekid » Fri Oct 04, 2013 9:30 pm

It has been a wet late summer in the southwest, with unusually heavy monsoons. It rained hard for two days prior to us putting-on the river, and rained at night for the next two days. All the side drainages were dumping mud into the Colorado, especially the Paria River. It was like trying to kayak in a mudflow. It did makes things somewhat vexing, as everything got coated in that super-slick stuff. The Colorado river is the only bathing water (where one can use soap) so you can imagine trying to clean-up in that...Hiking to the side creeks of clean fresh water that come straight out of the rock walls provided some rinsing relief (but no soap for bathing allowed).

The Colorado comes out of the bottom of Glen Canyon dam at something like 47 degrees, and only warms a degree every 20 miles. So not only was it very muddy, it was also cold.

When I got home I took all my boating gear to a wand car wash and hosed out an remarkable amount of fine sediment. The rest is in my sinuses :(
User avatar
mokelumnekid
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 446
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2008 4:45 pm
Location: Seattle
Experience: N/A


Return to Beyond The Sierra Nevada



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron