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  • Writer's pictureThomas Delker

Day 3 Yampa River Trip

A great day of hiking with a calm day of rafting. We started the morning waking up to the sky slowly brightening while we listened to the river. Coffee and buttermilk pancakes from scratch with strawberries and blueberries for breakfast was the request by the Millers as they enjoyed them last year on Deso Gray trip. The girls did dishes and then we headed out for a 4 mile hike to a point overlooking the River up a canyon wash that had a flash flood recently.

Back at the boats we ate lunch in the shade and then headed across the river to signature cave. The oldest date we found was Hatch 1939. Hatch is a pretty famous river running name in the western rivers and there is a commercial company still run by the Hatch family on the grand and a number of other rivers.

We floated about 9 miles down stream in a serpentine path through amazing canyon with the highlight being Grand Overhang, a 1000 ft cliff lining the river. We got out the ducky for the boys in this calm stretch but the girls were too tuckered for the kayak.

Then another stop at Mathers Cave to see a Fremont Native American grainery where they would store their seeds for corn (and usually squash and beans but they had only found corn seeds at this site so far) over winter to plant the next year. Stone hollows with caps sealed with clay kept them safe. The hike was short but beautiful as we went up a suprisingly lush canyon to the cave.

A fast float around the corner to our site at Laddie 2: a great camp with good shade, arriving around 4.30 pm. The usually chores of setting up the kitchen, tent spots, groover and then Crys and I prepared guacamole and salsa for horderves and then Carnitas tacos or burritos for dinner topped with amazing chocolate caramel bars Crys prepared at home. Now off to sleep for a short day tomorrow but our biggest rapid of the trip - a class 4 with a known raft-flipping hole that can be a challenge to avoid at this water level. We camp just below it with a total of Only 6.5 miles.

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