The rivers around Grand Junction are excellent for canoeing, kayaking, and rafting. This web page is intended to guide you to river trips in the Grand Junction area. All rivers must be approached with the same respect given to the more challenging rivers. All rivers require some basic knowledge and skill on the part of the boaters. They require knowledge of how to maneuver a boat on moving water and in wind. Boaters should be able to recognize natural hazards on the river and be able to avoid them. During the spring runoff the rivers become more powerful and require more skill. Here are some things to consider before embarking on a river trip.
Safety in numbers: Minimum of two boats and three people is recommended
Life Vests: Always wear a life vest while on the river.
Weather: Check the weather forecast for wind, changing temperatures, and precipitation
Appropriate clothing: Make sure you have appropriate clothing for the weather forecast. A dry set of clothing in a dry bag is always a good idea, especially in the event of a swim in cool weather. Use sun cream to prevent sun burn, premature aging skin, and skin cancer.
Drinking water: Pack one gallon per person per day.
Float time: Figure you will be drifting on average two miles per hour on summer, fall,or winter flows on the rivers described on this web site. Add two or three miles per hour if you plan on paddling. Look at the mileage of your trip and do the arithmetic to calculate how long you will be on the river. Prepare accordingly. Leave word with someone of your plans
Boating skill: Take lessons, read books, go with experienced boaters who will help you learn. Appropriate boating skill can prevent “the river trip from hell”.
Equipment check: Paddles, grab loops, throw rope, whistle, first aid kit, repair kit, and no loose ropes in your craft that could entangle a boater.
Dams: Symmetrical cement dams, even small ones, should be avoided. They are death traps.
Sweepers, strainers, holes, and eddy lines: If you don’t know what these are, you are not ready for the river.
Private property: Know where private property is on your trip. Do not stop on private property.