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Verde River Paddle- Horseshoe to Bartlett, AZ
mini location map2016-02-28
6 by photographer avatarThe_Dude
photographer avatar
 
Verde River Paddle- Horseshoe to Bartlett, AZ 
Verde River Paddle- Horseshoe to Bartlett, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Feb 28 2016
The_Dude
Hiking4.92 Miles 425 AEG
Hiking4.92 Miles
425 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
Droog
Eartheist
Falke
So...I am posting this as a public service announcement. And yes, it is correctly listed as a hike, or at least for the miles reported. A group of six of us made an attempt at kayaking the Verde River from Horseshoe Dam down to Bartlett Flats Sunday morning. There is remarkably little info on this section of the Verde, but one of my friends (who will remain nameless :D ) had found some info on this listing it with class I to class II rapids. We have all been kayaking a few times before, but none of us are masters by any means. A few of us camped out the night before at the Mesquite dispersed camping area, pleasantly surprised by the area, and we were not crowded in. We finally put in right by Horseshoe dam about 9:30 after running a truck down to Bartlett Flats for the pickup. Things were great for the first mile and a half, huge flow out of the dam and a few fun rapids with underwater rocks to avoid. This is the point where our trip turned. We hit into an absolute labyrinth of reeds that were 5' tall or better on both sides of the water, with few breaks. Water was moving quickly, and we all ended up getting snagged and dumped into the water at this point. Few things invigorate like 40 degree, waist-high (or higher) water to kick the adrenaline in and avoid losing all our gear. We got split into two groups, but we all managed to get our kayaks bailed out (thankfully I had invested in a bilge pump) and found a spot to beach. A few of us scouted out farther down the river, and it just looked like more of the same, so we made the executive decision to bail and portage out to the road. We got tantalizingly close, but then encountered an absolute thicket of stabby things that we could find no way through. We had to cut back to the south to find a spot through, and ended up stomping down a few foot section of tamarisk and dormant reeds so we could squeeze our boats through. We met up with our other two group members, then three of us hiked the road back to get our trucks. In the end, we all had a good workout, even if not the intended beer drinking while floating down the river as hoped for...despite all the craziness, I think we only lost a paddle, a hat, and a pair of sunglasses between the six of us. Lots of bruises and scrapes for everybody. :lol: All in all, we still had fun, a few memories to share for down the road. I think we all learned a little bit too...
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