As if the Rio Grande's not already swollen. This weekend, hundreds of river-mad people will launch canoes, kayaks, and homemade floating devices as part of the Great Race.

Last weekend before the crowds surged, my friend and I did a bit of river reconnaissance just to, you know, ensure the scene was safe and all.

We put in at Alameda and "put out" (as I mistakenly referred to "taking out") at Central. The river's full and fast but the entire float still took about 3 hours.

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Feeling intrepid? Here's a map of our route:

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Comment by misterhinkydink on June 3, 2008 at 12:34pm
What's this requirement "registration numbers must be clearly visible at all times"? Un-powered canoes and kayaks don't have registration numbers, let alone homemade rafts.
Comment by Julie Heinrich on June 3, 2008 at 12:47pm
"take-out" is correct...did I say "put-out"? What a relaxing, enjoyable day!
Comment by chantal on June 3, 2008 at 12:50pm
No, I'm the total neophyte who can't get her kayaking terminology straight ;-)

Fortunately for me, the whole thing involved far more floating than actual kayaking.
Comment by brendisimo on June 3, 2008 at 2:36pm
Chantal,
are there any rules I should know about before floating down the Rio Grande some other time besides "the great race"? Can anyone do it? Do I need to be wearing a life-vest? Or is it pretty much a free-for-all? Just curious and really want to float down the river one of these days...
Comment by chantal on June 3, 2008 at 3:17pm
Great post, Scott.

Brendisimo,

As far as I know there aren't any special rules or inside connections required. Let's see what Scott's post flushes out.
Comment by Ron & Linda on June 3, 2008 at 3:41pm
The following NM State Park Boating Requirements will be enforced:
Required safety equipment
· Whistle or some other sound producing device on board.
·
· Approved US Coast Guard life jacket must be properly worn by all occupants.
· Bailing bucket equal to one gallon
· Stout rope equal to vessel length.
· Registration number must be visible at all times.
Comment by Steve Whitman on June 3, 2008 at 5:18pm
A great river canoeing/kayaking/floating trip is Cochiti to Algodones. Put in at the raceway just below the dam and get out at the diversion dam in Algodones. Best done with 2 vehicles - leave one at the downstream end so you have a ride back up to Cochiti. This is an all day trip, so bring lunch along.
Comment by Sacha Lyke on June 4, 2008 at 8:01am
My friend and I floated down the Rio Grande in a canoe. We put in at 550 and got out at 528. It took about 4.5 hours. WE did not need a pass or anything. I am not sure if life jackets are a requirement, but they are definitely a good idea. My friend and I didn't even realize that we forgot ours until we were well underway. We stopped and pulled onto the river bank and explored a couple of times. We even had a picnic. It does require 2 vehicles, b ut it is definitely worth it.
Comment by chantal on June 4, 2008 at 5:51pm
Yep, we were out on Sunday in a couple of bright orange inflatable rafts.

You weren't the 2 guys in a canoe, were you?
Comment by john on June 5, 2008 at 12:34pm
About this upcoming rio float; are there any arrangements for folks to get their boats back to the put in sight?

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