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Grand Canyon 6 day rafting trip

Tennessee
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Grand Canyon 6 day rafting trip

Just booked a 6 day rafting tour of the Grand Canyon for Aug of 08. Wanted to get any feed back that anyone would have that has taken this trip before with Western. What to expect - rapid wise, heat, what are the few very important things to bring, and how long and worth are the hikes? Any feedback, suggestions, comments, stories would be appreciated.....

Evanston, Wyoming
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1. Re: Grand Canyon 6 day rafting trip

Congratulations - barring bad luck or other unforeseen circumstances, you are going to have the time of your life! Now, it will be hotter than a snake's @%& in a wagon rut down on the river, can't lie to you about that, so your best strategy is to drink water regularly, and get wet and stay wet as often and for as long as you possibly can. Going through the rapids, this won't be a problem, but during the calm stretches, dip something in the water and put it on your shoulders, legs, etc. I brought a long-sleeve shirt and a pair of nylon pants for this very purpose.

Bring a wide-brimmed hat, preferably cloth (so you can get it wet) with a chin-strap (so you don't lose it), good sunglasses, preferably wrap-style with large lenses and a strap (again, so you don't lose it) and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots of sunscreen.

For clothing, I'd bring things that you wouldn't mind just tossing at the the of the trip. The reason I say that is August is typically our monsoon season and that means the river will be muddy at times, so you'll get dirty and stay dirty, and that red canyon dirt has a tendency to not come out of clothes for years! Avoid bringing any type of heavy cotton garments such as sweats or jeans. They'll just weigh you down and you won't need them. You'll spend most of your time in shorts, t-shirts, etc. I wore Tevas (sports-sandals) the entire trip, but brought a pair of tennis shoes just in case. I'd bring some clothespins and a couple of pieces of rope to hang clothes out to dry in the evening at camp.

As for hikes, they are ALL worth it. Degrees of difficulties vary. Some are very easy, others require some scrambling, uphill climbing, etc. Probably the most difficult hike for me was up to the Nankoweap ruins - very steep for a couple of miles. Upper Deer Creek falls also required some huffing and puffing as I recall. But my fondest memory of my river trip was the 2nd to last night of our journey. I chose to sleep "al fresco" (no tent) and woke in the middle of the night to see an incredible meteor shower. I felt like the luckiest person on earth! I contemplated whether to wake the others in my party, but (perhaps selfishly) opted to keep the experience to myself.

Anyway... I'll leave it at that for now and let my associates chime in. :) Have a great time!!!

Tennessee
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2. Re: Grand Canyon 6 day rafting trip

Wow, thanks for the post Kbot, will keep all that in mind. Was also curious as to the degree of rapids we will hit. I am hoping for some real action on this trip, will I be dissappointed?

Evanston, Wyoming
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3. Re: Grand Canyon 6 day rafting trip

Disappointed? No way! I'm not sure if you're going all the way from Lees Ferry to Whitmore Wash, but even if you're only doing part of the circuit, you'll have a ball. Whereas most rivers are rated on a scale of 1 to 5, the Colorado River of the Grand Canyon is rated on a scale of 1 to 10, and Lava Falls, the "Grand-daddy" of them all and the last rapid on the run, sometimes goes all the way up to 11.

Wikipedia has them all listed by mile and intensity. Here is the link:

…wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Colorado_River_r…

Tennessee
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4. Re: Grand Canyon 6 day rafting trip

According to the info I read, we are starting at Lee's Ferry and trip ends at Whitemore Wash...about 188 miles or so...looked like, on the map, that we will hit about 10 to 12 "rapid" areas, sound about right? How many hrs on a per day basis are you rafting?

West Palm Beach...
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5. Re: Grand Canyon 6 day rafting trip

Each day is different. It will depend on the length of the hikes that you take. Lunch is usually combined with the stop for a hike or swim. They also consider places available to camp along with everything else. Some days it was as little as 5 hours on the river. I liked the shorter hikes and did not go on the longer ones.

It was hot in late June so it will be even hotter in August. The water is ICE COLD, so it will keep you cooled off. You will definitely want a decent rain suit. As hot as it is you will want to keep covered up when running the rapids because of the cold water and shade that you go through. Wearing sunscreen, sunglasses, hat, and occasionally long light weight nylon pants (rain suit pants) will keep you protected. I had a spare pair of sunglasses and hat, just in case something happened. It would be a problem to not have sunglasses. Quick dry clothing is good to have too.

It is an amazing adventure and the trip of a lifetime! You'll have a wonderful time.

Sedona, AZ
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6. Re: Grand Canyon 6 day rafting trip

Pack light. A good rain suit is a must. One that you can put on and take off again easily. You'll need it when you go through the big rapids, because the water is frigid.

Long sleeve light weight shirt and pants, and (swim)shorts and a couple of tshirts will be all you'll need. It's not a fashion show. You'll probably wear the same stuff everyday, and then like K-Bot said, throw it away when you're done.

The trip company should provide you with a good packing list. Don't bring extra stuff. There's no room.

A good hat, sunscreen and lip protector, and (cheap) sunglasses with a strap to hold them on your head, and decent water shoes that you can get soaked and still hike in.

Feel free to contact me by private messaging. My GC raft trip was one of the most exciting vacation experiences of my life. It's well documented here at TA and I enjoyed coaching Prac1 last year as she prepared for her trip. And you can rely on any advice that she gives you as well.

West Palm Beach...
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7. Re: Grand Canyon 6 day rafting trip

Tn J9: Red Rox did a great job of advising me last year. Do take him up on his offer for additional questions. I know you will have many. All questions are welcomed. The list I got from the rafting company was very thorough. I do have some more tips for you and anyone else that might be preparing for a rafting trip.

I would bring a headlamp instead of a flashlight. That will leave your hands free to work with. My trip was in late June so the water was not muddy then, although I hear it can be if it is rainy. I say that because I did not need to throw away my clothes. I needed to buy some for the trip that were quick dry, like nylon material, because all I had was cotton. I was very glad I had them. I liked changing my clothes more than twice. My preference.

When they say quick dry clothing, that would include underwear. Some of the nylon shorts, jogging type, have them built in, if not quick dry is the route to go. I chose to sit in an area of the raft that got wet a lot and nobody wants to sit in wet underwear for a long time.

The hat should have a flexible rim. That is so when you put your rain suit hat on it will just cover your hat and still be able to pull tight around your face. The water somehow finds the littlest opening to get inside your wet suit and clothing. Many of the men had the kind of hats that covered their ears and neck so they did not get sunburned.

The Tevia type sandal is the best. Wear them way ahead of time to break them in. They will tell you that the sand is very fine. Many people ended up with blisters so bring some socks to wear in case.

Last, but not least. I had plenty of room. I had nylon type clothing that rolled well. There were a couple of items, travel pillow, that I didn't bring becasuse I was afraid of running out of room, but I had plenty. Hopefully this might answer any questions that you or others may have. Like Red Rox said, there is absolutely nothing like it! You'll love it!

Tennessee
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8. Re: Grand Canyon 6 day rafting trip

Thank you for the great info....

Going on my trip in late August of this yr. Will the water be muddy or clear? Water here in the Great Smokey Moutains is cleaner than bath water. Is this the same with the Colorado River?

Sedona, AZ
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9. Re: Grand Canyon 6 day rafting trip

The Colorado is always muddy. That's how it got its name.

Have a great trip.

Hudson, Ohio
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10. Re: Grand Canyon 6 day rafting trip

My wife and I took a 7 day trip all the way through the canyon 6/1 to 6/8. The trip was beautiful, however my wife did experience some minor problems. All bodily fluids have to go in the river not on the shore. Therefore, women have to wade waist deep into the 45 degree water to pee. She also got very cold the first day when the 45 degree water completely drenched her. She was much more comfortable when she went to the back of the raft (we were on one of the big motorized ones). Many of the rafters also put on rain suits in the morning due to the cold water. I was somewhat disappointed in the size of the rapids. I'm sure if we had been in a smaller raft they would have been a lot more exciting. You camp on sand beaches and if it is windy the blowing sand can be annoying. The food was great (Canyoneers was our company), guides were great. The plusses greatly outweighted the minuses. You will have a great time.