Tag Archives: Colorado River

From Mild to Wild: The Top Three Whitewater Rivers in the U.S.

 

From Mild to Wild: The Top Three Whitewater Rivers in the U.S.

Although there are arguably many stunning locations for fans to explore – from Nenana River in Alaska to Youghiogheny River in Pennsylvania – there are always three rivers that rate the highest when it comes to experiencing the most thrilling whitewater rafting in the United States.

Although there are arguably many stunning locations for fans to explore – from Nenana River in Alaska to Youghiogheny River in Pennsylvania – there are always three rivers that rate the highest when it comes to experiencing the most thrilling whitewater rafting in the United States.
Boating down the Colorado River below Havasu Creek in Grand Canyon National Park. NPS photo by Mark Lellouch.

Whitewater rafting is a truly amazing adventure. Whether a beginner or a true experienced rafter, there are guides to be utilized and trips to take that will provide you with everything from the most scenic areas to the most adrenaline-filled thrills.

Number one remains the Colorado River in Arizona. Talk about a challenge to the nth degree. The water on the Colorado River can be more than challenging, but the views are worth all the hard work. Here, people see the Grand Canyon from a whole different point of view as they travel down the winding, heart-pumping river to their final destination.

One of the principal rivers of the Southwestern United States and northern Mexico, the Colorado River measures 1,450-miles-long and drains an expansive, arid watershed that encompasses parts of seven U.S. and two Mexican states. The best, most amazing vantage points are given to whitewater enthusiasts here, but it is also not for the faint of heart. When it comes to the 2017 whitewater rafting season in Arizona, people can enjoy everything from half-day trips to week long excursions. You can also experience spectacular rafting in the Upper Salt River Canyon. Here, you can paddle through an incredible 2000-foot deep canyon as you go up against rapids such as, “Maytag,” “Overboard,” and “Mescal Falls.” The high Sonoran Desert scenery and fun-filled whitewater rafting makes the Colorado River in Arizona the place to create awesome memories.

Whitewater lovers also cheer loud and clear for the Gauley River in West Virginia. Continuously seen by paddlers as one of the top ranked rivers in the entire world, Gauley’s technical rapids, inaccessibility and scenic quality capture the imagination. Dropping more than 650 feet in 24 miles, the Gauley River features over 100 rapids.

A dam-controlled watershed ensures optimum flows, making this a world class rafting experience. When summer water flows on the Gauley River, intermediate to advanced rafters love the challenges they find. While inhaling that clean mountain air, they go up against the Gauley River’s rafting flows at their very peak. With thirty-five miles of heavy duty challenges, rafters are thrilled with this river as it winds through gorges and valleys – the likes of which cannot be seen anywhere else on the planet.

Coming in third is Rogue River in Oregon. Traveling from the Cascade Mountains to the Pacific Ocean, the scenery on the Rogue River is nothing short of spectacular. Multiple areas, such as Rainie Falls, Blossom Bar and Upper and Lower Black Bar Falls, provide challenging rapids for the experienced rafter. For the rafter just starting out, Rogue River also supplies calmer areas, such as the Argo rapids located between Hog Creek and Grave Creek.

It is not a surprise that the Rogue River is one of the most famous in the American West. River rafting trips can be taken through this incredibly scenic area that flows directly through the heart of a wilderness inundated with everything imaginable: deer, black bear, cougars, osprey, river otters and more. It is also the perfect place to spot that bald eagle soaring up above. Not only are the rapids exciting and the scenery gorgeous, but there are also superb hiking trails, placid pools, towering cliffs, and historic homesteads that all come together to create absolute magic.

From mild to wild, these are most definitely the top three whitewater rivers in the U.S. to explore, experience and enjoy!

 

Source:  Sportsmans Lifestyle

Nature Takes a Hit From its Own Protectors

 

Nature Takes a Hit From its Own Protectors

~ Amy Lignor

 

The EPA makes mistakes? Don’t be silly… Oh, wait, what’s that people are seeing out their windows in Colorado and now New Mexico? It looks almost like the sun is setting over the river, sending a burning shade of orange onto the glassy water in the heat of…wait. That is the water?

 

Yup. People are looking out their windows and seeing what was once a river turned into a long swath of orange goo. It looks about as disgusting as any landscape (Chernobyl, anyone?) could get. However, there is an even worse part. The goo that is traveling around houses, through neighborhoods, and affecting farms just happens to contain poisons. Lead. Arsenic. You name it, it’s in there. And the EPA – the lovers and protectors of nature – can be blamed for every single drop.

Dan Bender, with the La Plata County Sheriff's Office, takes a water sample from the Animas River near Durango, Colo., Thursday, Aug. 6, 2015. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said that a cleanup team was working with heavy equipment Wednesday to secure an entrance to the Gold King Mine. Workers instead released an estimated 1 million gallons of mine waste into Cement Creek, which flows into the Animas River. (Jerry McBride/The Durango Herald via AP)
Dan Bender, with the La Plata County Sheriff’s Office, takes a water sample from the Animas River near Durango, Colo., Thursday, Aug. 6, 2015. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said that a cleanup team was working with heavy equipment Wednesday to secure an entrance to the Gold King Mine. Workers instead released an estimated 1 million gallons of mine waste into Cement Creek, which flows into the Animas River. (Jerry McBride/The Durango Herald via AP)

It all started in Denver, Colorado, when this first sight of disgusting, thick orange muck appeared from a million-gallon mine waste spill, which then headed down the river to quiet New Mexico. People and neighborhoods were told to take precautions BUT that there was no threat to drinking water whatsoever…yet. Downstream, other officials came out and said to completely avoid the Animas River (David Ostrander, Director of the EPA’s emergency response program/Denver.)

 

The EPA clean-up team was on-site at an old gold mine (Gold King Mine in SW Colorado) working to secure an entrance into the old site when their heavy equipment suddenly brought something else to light. A mine bulwark broke as they were working away and sent a huge torrent of waste downstream that raised the water level three feet in Cement Creek. An estimated 1 million gallons of mine waste was delivered into the creek that runs into the Animas River, which then continues to meet up with the San Juan River in New Mexico and the Colorado River in Utah.

 

It was initially said that the goo was acidic and could be a skin irritant, but then the EPA began its testing and found a list of harmful contaminants in the goo; from iron and copper to arsenic and more.

 

New Mexico’s Governor, Susana Martinez, said the EPA waited too long to tell her about the problem. Apparently she was not informed until almost a full 24-hours after the incident occurred. Health officials have warned those avid rafters out there that they need to avoid the water (this was not exactly listened to; Google will show you the rafters paddling around in a very gross orange river.)

 

Durango, Colorado, stopped pumping water out of the Animas River in order to avoid any of the awful waste ending up in the city reservoir, telling everyone, including pet owners and livestock owners to keep their animals out of the Animas until something can be figured out.

 

In Farmington, New Mexico (NW corner of the state), officials of the city stopped all water-supply intake pumps to avoid contamination and told citizens to stay far away from the river until the horrible color had passed. And although the EPA first stated there would be no harm to people seeing as that the waste was filled with only zinc and copper, it has turned out that the orange goo brings far more problems and a great deal more to worry about.

 

Fish have been contained in cages from the Animas River and will be monitored to see what any long-standing issues might be for surrounding wildlife. As far as human beings are concerned, this is a game of wait and see as the thick, disgusting orange river continues to flow.

 

Source:  Baret News