Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Westward Waters: Day 4 & 5

We awoke and slowly began the day. Checking river levels, we felt that our options were limited in the Beuna Vista area. We parted ways with our new found paddling friends and decided we would drive towards Gunnison planning to have a easier day paddle the North Fork of the Gunnison River. We drove onward through the high desert plateau’s reaching a large reservior. Tracing it’s edge we found ourselves driving along a small gorge. We arrived at the river and quickly found a local at the campground willing to set up a shuttle for us.

Putting in on the North Fork of the Gunnison River
Upon driving up river I scouted the rapids and was rather unimpressed. Putting on the river my impression was correct. It was a fairly mellow river have several rapids of class IV in nature. But comparing to our previous day it was rather under-stimulating. But I changed my mindset and appreciated the scenery and the fact that I was able to rest and have a low stress day.
We camped along the Gunnison River and woke the next morning miffed as where we should paddle next. The river conditions remain near insanity as the classic run in the Creste Butte area raged out of the realm of possibilities for me. So we called drove back to the Arkansas to see what could be found. Our paddling friends still were enjoying the Arkansas and we decided we all would run the Arkansas through “The Number’s” again.

New found friends... an awesome crew!
It was a beautiful day and every part of our run through the Number’s went flawlessly. I managed get my redemption run although river levels were now 3400 cfs and significantly lower. The afternoon was still young and so I borrowed a playboat and jumped into the play park at Beuna Vista. 

Playing at Beuna Vista's newer playpark at high water
As clouds darkened in the sky and we took shelter at a local restaurant indulging ourselves in a hearty meal while the rain poured from the darken sky. The weather quickly cleared as we drove to the nearby Clear Creek Reservoir to camp with the intention of waking in the morning and running Clear Creek.

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