Lodore Canyon Stargazing Trip

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About This Trip

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This Whitewater river trip through Lodore Canyon will let you peek behind the scenes in Dinosaur National Monument, currently recognized by the National Park Service as a “Sanctuary of Natural Darkness.” On this trip, we will connect to ghosts of river-runners and canyon dwellers of the past, escape into deep-red cliffs and find exhilarating whitewater rapids.  During the day float on the Green River through Whirlpool Canyon and at night peer into the Whirlpool Galaxy; after dinner the night comes alive as we turn our sights upwards to explore the Milky Way, see the Andromeda Galaxy, watch satellites and meteors, and learn constellations, both with binoculars and naked eyes.

Trip Overview

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Location: Green River-Dinosaur National Monument
Type: Rafting/ Naturalist
Length: 4 Days
Date: August 4-7
Meet At: Vernal, UT 7:00 AM
Rating: Intermediate
Age Min:8
Deposit: $300

Highlights

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  • Exhilarating Class III & IV whitewater rapids
  • Cavernous canyons of amazing beauty
  • Many opportunities to view wildlife
  • Soft sandy beaches for camping & games
  • The perfect family rafting adventure

Trip Price & Departure Date

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2018 Trip Price
$980 per person

*$22 NPS Fees per person.

2018 Trip Date

August 4-7

Trip Slideshow

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Full Gallery

Map

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The Green River cuts like a knife through Lodore Canyon from the top of Dinosaur National Monument through its heart. At the confluence with the Yampa river this trip takes you through Echo Park & Whirlpool Canyon before floating you into Island Park.  Hold on tight for the last 8 miles of whitewater through the center of a mountain before reaching the Split Mountain takeout.

Itinerary

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One of the advantages of a river trip is the flexibility of the daily itinerary.  It can vary widely from one trip to the next based on group desires, Mother Nature, and courtesy for other groups on the river.  This typical itinerary illustrates a four-day trip through Lodore Canyon.

Day 1:  Meet your party at our headquarters in Vernal, Utah at 7:00 a.m., Mountain Time. There we will issue your waterproof bags and you can buy any last minute items from our accessories store at this time (see our packing checklist for a list of items you can find at our store).  We then take a three-hour scenic van ride to Brown's Park National Wildlife Refuge, the site of the put-in.  Pass through the Gates of Lodore and encounter John Wesley Powell’s notoriously named Disaster Falls.

Day 2:  The "Gates" mark the beginning of High Desert country - the Colorado Plateau – in what is deemed an ecological transition-zone; a landscape teaming with wildlife.  As the canyon narrows, more rapids emerge: Harp Falls, Triplet Falls, and Hell's Half Mile. Hike at Rippling Brook and discover a secluded waterfall.

Day 3:  At the confluence of the Green and Yampa rivers at Echo Park, the canyon widens before the river circles Steamboat Rock.  Here the river enters Whirlpool Canyon. The afternoon may be spent at Jones Hole Creek - a blue-ribbon trout stream with side canyon petroglyphs and waterfall.

Day 4:  Peaceful morning in Island and Rainbow Park before entering another massive gorge.  The Green's powerful forces cut laterally through Split Mountain's uplifted and colorful core.  Rapids abound before the take out and a 35-minute ride back to Vernal. Our expected time of arrival back at our headquarters is about 4:00 p.m.

As mentioned earlier, this is a sample itinerary and should not be thought of as the trip you will experience.  It is intended to give an idea of what the trip will be like. It could also be exactly what you do.  Keep an open mind, be flexible, go with the flow, and enjoy!

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