The Rio Chama, Summer, 2018

Our other river is the Rio Chama, the next drainage to the west of the Rio Grande. It joins the Rio Grande at Española, just 20 miles to the south of our headquarters in Embudo. But it is remarkably unlike the Rio Grande in so far as its scenery is concerned. The Rio Grande runs along the Rio Grande Rift, which is responsible for the lava flows that have blanketed the Taos Plateau. The Rio Grande Gorge is cut into those grey and black flows.

The Rio Grande Gorge High Bridge

The Rio Chama, on the other hand, is to the west of all that volcanic activity. It sits on the eastern margin of the Colorado Plateau, that area known for its sandstone scenery. The Rio Chama has cut a canyon into colorful sandstone formations – red, yellow and white strata are seen in the cliffs that contain the river. This is the sandstone scenery made famous in the paintings of Georgia O’Keefe, who lived in the Rio Chama Valley, in the small village of Abiquiu.

the Rio Chama

Chama Rock, on the Rio Chama

Rio Chama Canyon, sandstone cliffs and cottonwood

Placid water

Hot spring

Gypsum cliff

Cliffs of Entrada Sandstone

Swiss cheese wall

You can catch rainbow and brown trout in the dam-release waters of the Rio Chama

Reservoir storage on the Rio Chama is now providing good flows (800 cfs) for the 3-day Wilderness (from El Vado Reservoir) and 1-day Rio Chama (from Christ of the Desert Monastery) trips. Get three friends together and give us a call! 800-984-1444/www.newwaverafting.com

The Chama Mama trip – 3 days in the NM wilds

On the weekend of Aug. 19-21, we had a full house of 16 women participate in the Chama Mama 3-day Chama Wildermess trip, a New Wave tradition. The four staff were: Kathy Miller, Pres. of New Wave, CJ Robison (who has been with New Wave for over 10 yrs.), Elisha MacArthur (guide from the Arkansas River) and Lorie Bonds Lopez, formerly an Outward Bound course leader. The group had good water and not much rain! Here’s what the group organizer has to say:

“Hi Steve,
This was another major-ly successful and supremely wonderful “Chama Mama” ladies trip! My group was so happy and are still talking about it. It was so great to see Kathy again and CJ, Elisha and Lorrie were so much fun and so capable….even the “timid” in my group felt completely safe and cared for.
We will do this again, for sure.
Thanks again,
Paula”
Chama Mama trip

Chama Mama trip

The staff: Left to right: Elisha, Kathy, CJ and Lorie

The staff: Left to right: Elisha, Kathy, CJ and Lorie

The Chama Mamas

The Chama Mamas

Rio Chama

The Leslie Barclay party journeyed down the Rio Chama with us on July 19 and 20. Kathy Miller, President of NWRCo., led the overnight trip, with the support of NWR staff Joe Cameron, Lillian Wilson (aka Sancho Panza) and Jesse Verellen. I understand that they had a great time! The Rio Chama Wild and Scenic river is one of the charter rivers in the Federal Wild and Scenic system, and flows through the Carson National Forest Chama Canyon Wilderness. Here’s what one guest said: “I thoroughly enjoyed the river trip! Cathy and the others were all joys to work with!  Thanks again,  Sandy”

From left to right: Joe, Lillian, Jesse and Kathy

From left to right: Joe, Lillian, Jesse and Kathy (selfie)

From left to right: Kathy, Jesse, Joe, Lillian. They're cooking salmon over the coals.

From left to right: Kathy, Jesse, Joe, Lillian. They’re cooking salmon over the coals.

Joe serving our guests

Joe serving our guests

Joe serving our guests

Joe serving our guests

Joe serving our guests

Joe serving our guests

Marshmallows!

Marshmallows!

Bull snake on a cliff face

Bull snake on a cliff face

Placid water

Placid water

That's Kathy, wearing her new pith helmet

That’s Kathy, wearing her new pith helmet