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Paddlesports Schools:

Rocky Mountain Outdoor Center
Located in:
Salida, CO

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Big South Tributary Whitewater Kayaking Trip on the Cache La Poudre River

Bar Room Brawl
Bonk Bouncing Betty Cool World Double Trouble Left Line at Fantasy Flight
Right Side Line at Fantasy Flight Meltdown Pinball Starter Fluid

Big South Tributary Info
Use this information at your own risk. See our legal notices.
Put In:  Long Draw Reservoir
Take Out:  Hwy 14 - Big South Campground
Difficulty:  Class IV - , Class V +
Gradient:  Average - 134, Highest- 218 fpm
Run Length:  11.6 miles
Good Level:  1 - 3 feet
Streamflow Comments:  There is no internet gauge for this creek. The best way to check the level is to go to the Big South Campground, across the river is a large cedar plank with marks every 3 inches, read from the top of each mark. 1-2 feet is low, 2-3 feet is medium, and 3+ feet is high.
Season Comments:  June, July
Primary Season:  This creek usually runs from mid-June to mid-July. Flows are dependent on current snowpack
Permit:  None presently required
Character/Similar To:  Isolated low volume class V creek. This creek has it all, waterfalls, slides, and boulder gardens, all with a high level of technicality. A trail parallels most of the run, this section of river will take the entire day. Good throw ropes and a few extra break down paddles are necessary because this run is often home to carnage.
Hazards:  This run is a very long stretch of continuous class V and should only be attempted by expert boaters. Most people take out above Slideways Rapid because it contains a dangerous rock sieve
Water Craft:  kayak,wwcan
Land Ownership:  Public Forest
Wilderness:  Yes
Camping on River:  Big South Campground
Location:  In the Rocky Mtn Region (CO), 124 miles (2 hours 35 minutes) Northwest of Denver
Shuttle Logistics: 

Take Out: Take out below Big South Campground at the Highway 14 Bridge, there is a large pull out on the eastside of the highway near the bridge.

Put In: From the take out drive up river for 5.1 miles on Highway 14 and turn left onto FR 156. From here continue for 8 miles to Long Draw Reservoir. To reach a good halfway point through the run, and set a possible car-support camp, turn left off of FR 156 at mile 2.8 just past the idyllic Trap Lake.

Towns near Big South Tributary Kayaking

Casper Wyoming
Cheyenne Wyoming
Estes Park Colorado
Fort Collins Colorado
Golden Colorado
Grand Lake Colorado
Kremmling Colorado
Laramie Wyoming
Red Feather Lakes Colorado
Winter Park Colorado

Other Resources

Conservation Organizations
  • Friends of the Poudre
  • Save The Poudre
  • Sierra Club-Poudre Canyon Group
  • Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado
  • River Managing Agencies
  • Colorado State Parks
  • Rocky Mountain Kayak Clubs
  • Colorado School of Mines Kayak Club
  • Colorado Whitewater Association
  • High Country River Rafters
  • Pikes Peak Whitewater Club
  • Poudre Paddlers
  • Rocky Mountain Canoe Club
  • Travel Guides
  • Colorado Vacation & Travel Guide