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Published on avril 10th, 2017 | by Kayak Session

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Juicy Flows on the Upper Taos Box (New Mexico)

A stellar low elevation snowpack and warmer than usual temperatures provided the ideal conditions for early season high water flows on the Upper Taos Box (UTB).

The UTB is a 6 mile boulder-choked run in New Mexico outside of Taos. Normal flows range between 500-1000cfs yet for this weekend were lucky to catch it at 1650cfs. You descend down a trail 400ft to the put in and then hike out a 1mile long, 800ft uphill back to the campground where you’re staying. At least you know there’s cold beers and a sweet camp spot waiting for you at the end of that crusher.

Due to the basalt nature of the canyon, all the rapids have siphons everywhere and most rapids flows straight into river-wide boulder gardens with lots of water going underground.

There are many stories of paddlers getting worked on this run and there have been some unfortunate bad accidents. Pins, swims, near death rock rides…the stories are endless.

I feel super fortunate to have had the chance to run it higher than I have before with a great crew. It was definitely the most fun level I’ve had down there.

Dave Farkas

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