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Buffalo River 2 night float trip July 2012

Cypress, Texas
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Buffalo River 2 night float trip July 2012

Taking our 1st trip down Buffalo River this July. Few questions? Best outfitter that has car service. Best place to put in for a 2 night July float with family of 4 (2 adults and 2 boys 12/14). We plan to gravel camp on the river - any suggestions to help on this as well.

little rock arkansas
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for Little Rock, Arkansas
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1. Re: Buffalo River 2 night float trip July 2012

My favorite stretch is Ponca to Pruitt which is normally not navigable in July but I really like the area above Rush in mid-summer. I also like exploring Rush, which is an old "ghost town" with abandoned mines. I expect you may want to only paddle 8 or so miles a day? So Spring Creek or maybe Maumee would be put-in possibilities for take-out at Rush over two days. My family makes nearly a day out of Buffalo Point to Rush which is only 3-4 miles due to extreme swimming, eating and goofing around. This is an extremely popular stretch during the summer so if at all possible avoid the weekends. While some may have favorite vendors, I have never had a problem with any of the canoe rental services. They are all licensed and monitored by the National Park Service. Their rates are pretty standard and they hire local boys well versed in safety and giving good instructions. I would read up on the river - and decide on a stretch before you talk to the operators as their only fault is trying to push the routes closest to their base. So if you like the notion of taking out at Rush, call the vendors listed for "lower river" canoe rentals. Kenneth Smith's classic "Buffalo River Country" is still the most interesting river book to me. It documents mid 20th century paddling by guys who actually saved the river. You will want to thank them many times when you are on the river and think that the Corps of Engineers came very close to destroying all this beauty by damming it. Old ladies went to Washington from the hills and begged for the Congress to over rule the Corps. The cardinal rule on gravel bar camping is to camp (and pull your boats and gear) on the highest point possible. This river can rise as much as 30 feet in one night even if it is not raining - it only has to rain upstream! Do not let me frighten you off. Just be aware of the weather conditions. Chances are there will be not a drop of rain for much of the whole month. Sunburn may be your main nemesis! The Buffalo is fabulous. You will love it.

Edited: 25 April 2012, 20:59
little rock arkansas
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for Little Rock, Arkansas
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2. Re: Buffalo River 2 night float trip July 2012

A little more on the Buffalo. The website you need to check out is below, in case you have not. Also, I always try to talk directly to a ranger if I have a question. Below is the phone number for the HQ. If you don’t catch a ranger with full river knowledge, try again later. The rental vendors for the lower Buffalo are listed below. I have used the last two and they were similarly qualified and priced. I have used others in the middle Buffalo area and they were likewise all about the same. They have to stay honest and safety conscious to maintain their contracts with the Park Service.

www.nps.gov/buff/

(870) 741-5443

Buffalo River Float Service
1-877-350-6592
(870) 449-2042
11637 Suite1, Highway 14 South
Yellville, AR 72687

Dirst Canoe Rental
1-800-537-2850
(870) 449-6636
538 Highway 268 E.
Yellville, AR 72687

Wild Bill's Outfitter
1-800-554-8657
(870) 449-6235
23 Highway 268 E.
Yellville, AR 72687

3. Re: Buffalo River 2 night float trip July 2012

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