Retro river rafting? Is this just some kind of alliterative joke? Does that mean we’re going to be running rapids with bucket boats and cooking over a fire? Just how retro are we going? Back to the days of John Wesley Powell’s heavy oak boats? Or way back to the time when mountain men were trapping beavers in buffalo boats?
Well, we probably won’t be going quite that retro. However, this trip is an homage to the founders of this crazy river rafting thing that we all love. We’ll probably lace up our Chuck Taylors, hike up our cut-off jean shorts, dust off the Sierra cups and drink a toast to the people like Dee Holladay, who made a trip like this possible. And we’re bringing along Roy Webb, renowned river historian, to teach us all a thing or two about those who came before us.
To top it all off, we’re doing this Retro Rafting Trip through Desolation Canyon on the Green River – a place with oodles of river history around every bend. Let Roy regale you with tales of boaters of yore in one of the most remote parts of the continental United States: The Tavaputs Plateau. This region was home to the Fremont Cultural group over 1,000 years ago and is the traditional Ute homeland to this day as the river delineates the border of the Uintah & Ouray Ute Tribal Nation. The rich history of the canyon continues as homesteaders and ranchers also eked out a living along the river, and some truly notorious outlaws found refuge inside Desolation’s deep canyon walls.
Floating through a rainbow-colored canyon gorge, you’ll find a dizzying array of history and wildlife. This trip has it all: river history, playful waves for inflatable kayaking enthusiasts, and some of the best sandy beaches with shady cottonwoods you’ll find on the Colorado Plateau. Come join Roy on this retro, reunion in the wilderness of Desolation Canyon.