Moab, the Green River, and Canoes (We Survived!)

Yes, dear friends and readers, after surviving both the Super-Blood-Moon total lunar eclipse (and the accompanying end-of-the-world prophesies) and the hike up Water Canyon, it’s now time to paddle the final 4.5 miles to The Confluence, where the Green River flows into the Colorado.

Eve and Rick enjoy our last day on the river

Eve and Rick enjoy our last day on the river

As always, there’s the awesome scenery, and sometimes the river is calm enough to get good reflections. Even very muddy water can do a good job of mirroring cliffs.

Reflections - both literal and existential - are common on the Green

Reflections – both literal and existential – are common on the Green

Upon reaching the Colorado, we found a place directly across from the Green that looked like it would be a good pickup spot. After we beached the canoes and unloaded them, we cleaned them out so there wouldn’t be any dried sand in them to fall on us during the jet boat ride. Then, with nothing to do but wait, we, um, waited. Several folks exited the Green after we did, including this kayaker with a trailer! The photo also shows how different the river colors can be.


By comparison, this shot from 2008 shows why the Colorado [Red] and Green have their respective names.


On the way up the Colorado in the jet boat, we spied this trio of rock natives, just doing their thing.


The boat ride ends at Potash Road, where a boat ramp has been built for public use. Because of the river’s current, you can’t just gently float up to your trailer, hop out, attach the bow cable, and winch your boat onto the trailer. Besides, this boat is a tad big for that. No, what you do is build a trailer with a pivot on the downstream back corner and use that as a guide while you power the boat up onto the trailer. Then, with the engines still pushing the boat forward, you hop out, hook the safety / restraining / anchor cable to the bow to keep the boat in place. Hop back in, turn off the engines, and then pull the entire ensemble out with the former school bus. Unload the gear from the boat back at Tag-A-Long and you’re done!



We ate dinner that night at The Moab Brewery – another tradition I have adopted from the times when Toni and I went. They have good food, great decor, and delicious gelato! We stayed at the River Canyon Lodge (which is your basic motel with a few suites, a hot tub and a pool) that night, and I left Friday morning before Eve or Rick got up. The drive home, down US 191 and through Monument Valley, was uneventful; I got home shortly after dark that evening.

I’m glad I went. When I ran the river (solo) in 2013, I was actively mourning Toni’s death, and left some of her ashes in multiple locations along the Green River. At that time, I honestly didn’t know whether I’d ever run the river again. But the fact that my kids hadn’t ever been able to go with us prompted me to set up this year’s trip. Although only one of my girls ended up going, it was well worth it, and I definitely plan to do it again – next time, I hope with all three daughters! I think I may have hooked Eve and Rick, too – at least, they seemed moderately interested in going again when I mentioned it. 😉

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