Lodore Canyon: Dinosaur National Monument
Lodore was the first major canyon encountered by John Wesley Powell and his men on their 1869 expedition. Powell's adventures live on in the rapids he named: Disaster Falls, Triplet Falls and Hell's Half Mile. Set aside as an American treasure in 1938 under the National Park system, this canyon is a sanctuary for bighorn sheep and deer.
Your 44-mile trip starts at the "Gates of Lodore", where two 800-foot buttresses mark the beginning of a series of canyons. You will see vermillion cliffs cut from Precambrian bedrock in Lodore canyon, then leapfrog through time as you cross a geologic fault in Echo Park, and finally watch rock reflect the colors of a rainbow on your last day at the entrance to Split Mountain Gorge.
The whitewater is technical, which means your guide's oars will be busy as a bee's wings, making quick cuts and dodges to keep the self-bailing raft headed for the clear chutes and clean waves. In the 1870's Pat Lynch, a hermit who lived at Echo Park, used to visit his neighbors by floating downstream with a log. When we reach Echo Park we'll blow up an inflatable kayak just in case you want to leave your neighbors on the raft for some personal, paddling fun.
Desolation Canyon: Green River Wilderness
The Green River splits the 10,000 foot high Tavaputs Plateau and forms a gorge deeper than the Grand Canyon. Over one million uninhabited acres surround this holdout of the Old West. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid used these remote canyons one hundred years ago to escape the law. Today, we just go to escape.
Despite the name Desolation Canyon, the river surroundings offer green cottonwood groves, white sand beaches, and clear-water side streams. Your guide's selection of nightly camps will make good use of these features. Off river, abandoned homesteads mark the end of a frontiersman's dream and Native American petroglyphs the end of a civilization.
Born in 1987, the child of a side canyon flash flood, Belknap rapid is a formidable addition to the over 60 rapids on this 84-mile trip. With whitewater that builds in intensity each day, Desolation Canyon is an ideal place to occasionally swap your seat in the raft for a thirst quenching ride in an inflatable kayak.
On selected dates throughout the season we combine our Desolation Canyon river trip with a two day stay at Tavaputs Ranch. Accessed by a short flight into the Tavaputs plateau, Tavaputs Ranch is nestled among remote alpine forests and rolling meadows. Daily activities include horseback riding, hiking, four-wheeling and relaxing outdoors.
To book your trip on the Green River call Holiday Expeditions at 800.624.6323!