Big Bend Conservancy
I'll be in Big Bend Thanksgiving Week and as much as I want to kayak into Santa Elena canyon (on a 2-person inflatable kayak with 2 people), I'm worried that the water level will be too high (currently at about 590cfs). What is the ideal water flow rate for going upstream on the Rio Grande at that point? If it is too high, would it be more worth it kayak down the Colorado Canyon (seems underwhelming compared to SEC) or better to just hike Santa Elena, putz around the Ross Maxwell Scenic Drive, and find other stuff to do? How long does Colorado Canyon take? If we don't do SEC that day, there won't be much other opportunity to do so in our itinerary so it's then or never.
Do you only have one day to spend on paddling?
Quote from: House Made of Dawn on November 07, 2018, 07:31:36 PMDo you only have one day to spend on paddling? "Do you only have one day to spend on paddling?"Unfortunately yes. We have three days total there, and the other two will be spent backpacking south rim and going to hot springs/Boquillas Del Carmen. Our kayak isn't big enough to take all the gear we'd need for overnight, which means we'd have to rent a canoe, but we don't have any way to transport it, so we'd need to get a shuttle, which is quickly adding layers of complexity. Plus neither of us have ever done overnight canoeing involving rapids; we're a little wary about capsizing and suddenly all of your stuff is soaked.
Interesting. I called a couple of the outfitters and they said that anything more than 200cfs will be a struggle going upstream. Though another site said 500cfs is doable. I wonder if maybe they were referring to different gauges? I've been looking at Costolon gauge, but I wonder if after the Terlingua creek meets the Rio Grande that, that increases the cfs considerably by the time it gets to the Costolon gauge.
No, no, you're quite right. You can check historical gauge readings and around Thanksgiving last year it was indeed around 800cfs. I guess we'll just have to find out when we get there!
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