Gila, New Mexico, US
|Usual Difficulty||II-III (for normal flows)|
|Gila Near Gila|
|dream-510||200 - 1200 cfs||II-III||14h51m||32 cfs (too low)|
This is a very scenic run with moderate rapids, relatively clear water, and excellent camping. Old guidebooks warn of barbed wire in the river, but we encountered none.
A hiking trail follows the river for the entire distance, crossing from bank to bank. The only emergency exit is at Sapillo Creek, where a trail leads many miles to highway 15.
Put in at Grapevine campground on the East Fork, or at the highway bridge near the confluence with the Middle Fork. You might want to visit Gila cliff dwellings national monument before launching. The normal take-out is at a campground just past the mouth of Mogollon Creek. It is possible to take out upstream, where the dirt road that reaches Turkey Creek changes from 2WD to 4WD, but this makes your shuttle worse.
Usually boatable during a brief period of peak snowmelt in normal years, or for a longer period in years with above-average snowpack. Minimum flow around 200, same class at 1200 cfs, measured near takeout on the Gila gauge.