Colorado, Utah, US
|Usual Difficulty||I-III (for normal flows)|
|Avg. Gradient||5 fpm|
|COLORADO RIVER NEAR CISCO, UT|
|usgs-09180500||2000 - 15000 cfs||I-III||00h15m||9370 cfs (running)|
SEASON: Year around, but the flat sections may freeze in winter.
LOGISTICS: To reach the put-in take one of the Cisco exits off I-70 and continue towards Cisco. Take the dirt road heading southeast out of Cisco and continue on towards the river. Take the left fork to reach the access ramp at Rose Ranch (easy put-in for rafts). There is a good parking area here and restrooms. To reach the take-out head back to Cisco, turn left, and then take a second left on Highway 128 which parrallels the run through the Professor Valley and goes all the way to Moab. The road makes for an easy shuttle and the lower reaches are a popular day trip for folks in Moab. Alternate access is available at Dewey Bridge (river left) and Hittle Bottom (with ramp, restrooms, and camping) which puts you just above the rapids on this section. Another access at Big Bend (about 6 miles upstream of Moab) is a take-out just below the last rapids.
The run starts out at the take-out for the popular Westwater Canyon run. The first 24 miles to Hittle Bottom are a mellow class I float. Some come specifically for this sections while many bypass it by putting in at Hittle Bottom or Dewey Bridge at the Dolores confluence. This also means that those who do paddle this first section will have the river more to themselves than areas upstream or downstream.
Although there's not too much action, a few whitewater rapids (class II/III) break up the scenic float once you enter the Professor Valley past Hittle Bottom. This 18 mile stretch in the middle of the run makes a good overnight trip, but it's popular so don't expect to have the river to yourself. Camping is restricted to designated sites.
Boaters can continue their trip downstream to Cataract Canyon (permit required past the Green River confluence)
or take advantage of boating opportunities on the upstream sections of the Colorado or Dolores which come together just downstream of the Rose Ranch put-in:
|Mile||Rapid Name||Class||Features (Legend)|
|15.8||Dewey Bridge access area||N/A|
|22.1||Hittle Bottoms access area||N/A|
|29.0||Ida Gulch access area||N/A|
There is a large boat ramp on river left, downstream of the bridge.