Fall Along the Rio Grande, 2017

Fall colors, bighorn sheep, brown trout and beautiful days! All photos were taken in September, October and November of this year.

It is the riverside cottonwoods that provide most of the color at this time of year. The Spanish word “bosque” means riverside grove of trees.

The Bosque stretch

The Bosque stretch

The Bosque stretch

The Bosque is a “float” stretch, which passes by our riverside headquarters. In 2018, we will be offering a 3-mile long dinner float that will end at our cottonwood-shaded barbecue and dining area, beside a tranquil stretch of the Rio Grande.

At our landing – the destination of our Bosque float. Kathy Miller, NWR Pres., is seen in a funyak.

Lone Juniper CG, in the Orilla Verde stretch of the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument

Rio Bravo CG, in the Orilla Verde stretch

For the first time in memory, a large group of bighorn sheep spent a number of weeks along the river, road and campgrounds in the Orilla Verde stretch. As can be seen, they did not at all mind the close approach of people and slowly moving cars.

Bighorn sheep ram, Orilla Verde

Bighorn sheep ewe, Orilla Verde

Bighorn sheep lamb, Orilla Verde

The lower and clearer waters of this time of year makes for good trout fishing. My favorite fish is the self-sustaining brown trout, which, although originally brought over from Europe, is not now stocked.

Brown Trout, Orilla Verde

Brown trout, caught on an outlandish-looking grasshopper imitation, Orilla Verde

NWR raft and fishing guide Todd Emerson, Orilla Verde

NWR raft and fishing guide Todd Emerson and his drift boat, Orilla Verde

Fall is over when the wintering bald eagles and diving ducks return (which include goldeneyes, buffleheads, ring-necked ducks and mergansers). Other waterfowl seen are the year-round mallards, Canada geese (some of which are year-round) and an occasional gadwall.

Bald eagle, along the Racecourse stretch

Goldeneye ducks, along the Orilla Verde stretch

Guide Testimonial About Neil Oberheide, AM Racecourse July 18

Guide Testimonial About Neil Oberheide: “Our rafting experience was AMAZING due in part to the expert guide we had.  I can’t remember his name but his aunt & uncle have ownership in the rafting company.  We rafted in the AM trip on July 18th and had a blast.  I had rafted before but my significant other had not.  He being from Chicago and me from Montana made the difference.  I am recommending your company to others and will continue to do so.  Thank you for a wonderful morning.  Chris Danner and Bob fisher”

Neil had been away for a few years (in school in California), but came back to guide again this summer. He brought his dog, Lenny, and, after work, they go out together on a stand up paddle board. While Lenny doesn’t confide much to anyone, we know that he’s having a great time. Neil is too, and you can tell that from the testimonial above.

What distinguishes us from other companies? It’s our guides, who always give our guests the best time possible. They love the outdoor life and love sharing it. Ask for Neil for your next trip. And you can do it online, while at the same time getting the “Online Special” (that’s the promo code) 10% discount. There’s still plenty of summer to go, and there is no better place to spend a summer morning or afternoon than on a river – the Rio Grande, I mean!

Neil and Lenny on SUP

2017 Season Opener

2017 Season Opener.

With the river running at 700 cfs, we had 11 guests do the PM Racecourse with us on April 11.

The Pittman party (Britt Runyon photo)

A Pittman (Britt Runyon photo)

As regards the coming run-off on the Rio Grande, the snowpack is now at 135% of average, with the peak flows projected to be between 4000 and 8000 cfs! This run-off situation is being compared to that of 1985, which was huge. The peak will probably occur in the first week of June, so you high water addicts should start booking those dates. They will go fast, once the word is out.

The Rio Chama will also have high water, with 135% of average snowpack.

Meanwhile, the Racecourse becomes Class 4 at the higher flows, and may be considered as hard or harder than the Taos Box at max flows. This will require that we raise the minimum age of children on that run, as the water rises. Please inquire!

Mile-long Rapid on the Racecourse section, at high water (Class 4)

 

 

Spring Break is for Rafting too – 3/12/15

Spring Break is for Rafting too! Today, March 12, 2015, we had the Ellisons, from El Paso, doing the all-day Rio Grande Gorge trip, and they were joined by the Speights, from Virginia, for the Racecourse afternoon portion. The Speights, a Navy couple, received our military discount of 20% off. And, they informed us that they were on their honeymoon! They thought it was pretty cool that they could combine skiing and rafting on one vacation trip. In years past, we wouldn’t open New Wave for Spring Break, and I (along with Kathy) would be teaching skiing instead. This Spring Break Kathy is up at Taos Ski Valley while I run the New Wave office and drive shuttle. The high today was 65 deg. and balmy. The party spotted an otter on the Racecourse portion, in the afternoon.

One of the easy rapids on the Float portion of the full-day Rio Grande Gorge trip is called "S-turn"

One of the easy rapids on the Float portion of the full-day Rio Grande Gorge trip is called “S-turn”

The Speights, on the right, join the Ellisons in the afternoon.

The Speights, on the right, join the Ellisons in the afternoon. To the left is their guide, Sancho.

Heading down the Racecourse run

Heading down the Racecourse run

First Racecourse Trip of 2015

The first Racecourse Trip of 2015! For the first time in our history, we opened for Spring Break. This has been a warm winter, and today’s high temp was 64 degrees. The Rio Grande was at 600 cfs. and clear, without a breath of wind. While waiting for the arrival of the raft above Saddle Rock rapid, I spotted an otter, and got a photo (not a great one though). It was a drop-dead gorgeous day. Here’s the Consford family, from Keller TX. The trip was guided by “Sancho Panza” Wilson, who is now in her third year of guiding with New Wave, and this was her first solo trip. She did great! Congrats Sancho.

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Upstream view towards the put-in

Upstream view towards the put-in

Otter, below Saddle Rock rapid

Otter, below Saddle Rock rapid

Herringbone rapid

Herringbone rapid

Herringbone rapid

Herringbone rapid

Final Drop rapid

Final Drop rapid

The Swinging Bridge

The Swinging Bridge

Below After Five riffle

Below After Five riffle

Sleeping Beauty rapid

Sleeping Beauty rapid

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