2019 Fall Gateway


There’s a time of day when the sun has descended low

enough that the cliff walls cast their shadows on the water.

The shadow on the river essentially turns it into long,

linear mirror. The cliff walls and the trees on the shore

are mirrored on the river, which turns the canyon into a

funhouse work of art. After the river serenade, we spend

another 90 minutes paddling to Lee’s Ferry, and the end

of our day’s kayaking adventure. Along the way we

passed a group of wild horses grazing on the bank at the

river’s edge.

Though a float trip through this stretch of the Colorado

River starts a short distance below the Glen Canyon

Dam, access to the river can only be obtained from Lee’s

Ferry. From there, private boats are allowed to launch

and motor upriver where they can drop off their friends

with kayaks.

You’ll be sharing the river with rafts from Wilderness

28 Gateway to Canyon Country

River Adventures, who transport sightseers from the Dam

to Lee’s Ferry, as well as fly fishermen with Lee’s Ferry

Anglers, who park their jetboats on the bank, or on gravel

bars and flycast for trout.

Two companies offer backhaul services from Lee’s Ferry

upriver. They will transport you, your friends, your

dogs, your kayaks and whatever gear you want to bring

with you upriver and drop you off at whatever point you

wish to begin your float trip.

Camping along the river is also allowed, but you must

camp in a designated campsite. There are nine of them

along the river. Camping at them is free, but they cannot

be reserved in advance. They operate on a first come,

first served basis. If you plan to camp, the companies

that provide the backhaul can drop your camp gear off

at your desired beach, then transport you and your kayaks

up river, and from there you can paddle back to your


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