Have you ever wondered how we get those big boats of ours back upstream? You are not alone … Plenty of folks at the end of the trip are thinking the same thing.
Fact is, we absolutely cannot motor those boats back up the mighty Colorado River. All of our Grand Canyon Whitewater expeditions begin at our warehouse in Flagstaff, AZ. The day before your trip launches, the guides and the warehouse crew are busy preparing the rafts and loading all the food while the rafts sit in big ‘docks’ as we call them.
After the guides are finished preparing the rafts, they are wheeled over to our trucks where they are loaded for transport to Lees Ferry. The guides ride in the truck with driver and they all head to Lees Ferry to arrive the afternoon before the trip launch.
Upon arrival at Lees Ferry, the guides have plenty to do. They get the rafts in the water and ready them even further. At the end of the day, the guides get to relax a little. Grand Canyon Whitewater provides their dinner out in Marble Canyon or nearby Vermillion Cliffs or Cliff Dwellers. Grand Canyon Whitewater also provides lodging for the guides the night before each trip, a welcome last shower and real bed!
The next morning, the guides and passengers gather to have orientation before heading off for their Arizona rafting trip!
At the end of the trip, the motorized rafts are driven all the way down to Pearce Ferry at mile 280 on the Colorado river. At this point, only the guides are left aboard as the passengers have disembarked further upstream. Our trucks (seen above) are driven from Flagstaff to Pearce Ferry to pick up the rafts and boatmen and take the whole bunch back to our warehouse where a big clean-up day awaits.
For the guides, most motorized raft trips take about 10 days of work all said and done.