Flows between 350 to 550 cfs are above average, and should only be tubed by experienced people. I spoke to our guides and they believe 200 CFS to be the basement flow. For these levels, we suggest you consult an outfitter for the area you'll be tubing. The rule of thumb for the Lickety Split section of the Kern River is when the water is between 200 – 500 CFS. If you’re planning to float a long stretch of creek—say, from Eben G. Fine to 38th—you might be happiest wearing a wetsuit, which also protects against scrapes on rocks. Hi Mark, good question. Sections besides the Lickety Split of the Upper Kern should be avoided as well. You shouldn’t go during medium or high river flows. Slide a couple of old bicycle tubes over the tube in a crisscross pattern, taking care that the valves are positioned away from the inner tube to prevent punctures (you might even want to use a nipper to trim them). (Trust us, you’ll thank us for this advice.) We’ve had good luck with these tubes here. Consult an outfitter. (This is where that platform you built comes in handy.) Ask the attendant for advice on how full to fill it, and check out the example tube they have hanging in the garage. 1000 - 1300 cfs: Quicker water - beware of potentially dangerous conditions. Use a decent tube. The dam's main purpose is flood control, and therefore rain up river can mean fluctuating release rates. We usually have a great time at 450-500 but have not done anything below that level. If the river is low, your rafting trip might be more mellow and have less intense waves. Guadalupe River Tubing - No “Can Ban”, bring your favorite drinks & snacks for your all day FUN FLOAT. Kern River tubing is a low water activity. Colorado Division of Water Resources graph, North America's Most Fascinating (Non-Eclipse) Natural Phenomena, Mailbox Peak—the Old Trail: Seattle's Most Technical Peak, How to Have a Locally-Sourced Thanksgiving Feast in the Lowcountry, 7 Rookie Mistakes Beginner Mountain Bikers Should Avoid, The Lowdown on Surf Fishing in Charleston. Flows from 150 to 250 are low, but you can still tube. It could save your life. Flows between 250 to 350 cfs are optimum. While inflating, put your knees on the tube to help distribute the air evenly and avoid bulges. Therefore, noting the level of Canyon Lake itself is helpful in this exercise. The real estate around the rivers are usually privately owned, and respect home owner's privacy. Whether you prefer doing laps through the western edge of town or running a long stretch of several miles, we've gathered the beta you need for a rollicking good time. Guadalupe tubing from the Horseshoe to Hueco Falls. This place doesn’t exactly gush with effusive customer service, but they will sell you a tube and let you inflate it for free. For a cushy, stable tube with handles, head to Whitewater Tube Company at 3600 Arapahoe, where you can rent a tube for $16, or buy one for up to $50. His first rafting trip was a multi-day down the Rogue River when he was six months old. Remember it's the rain *above* the dam that's relevant, where it will feed into the river. These flows will average around 200 cfs for the time period. The rule of thumb for the Lickety Split section of the Kern River is when the water is between 200 – 500 CFS. Above 200 cfs, conditions get a little spicy and you can count on getting flipped a few times, which is all part of the fun. The tried and true Kern River tubing run is the Lickety Split section of the Upper Kern river. Use of this website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and the Privacy Policy. Click here for a Google Map of the Lickety Split shuttle. If you are strapped for cash or want to go old school, buy a basic truck tire tube for $14.95 from the Conoco at Arapahoe and Broadway. office@KernRafting.com, Kern River Outfitters is operated under Special Use Permit with the Sequoia National Forest. At 700 cfs and higher, the whitewater can be deadly, so the sheriff’s office closes the creek to tubers. This is a popular and affordable option. 800-1200 CFS – Strenuous; 1200-3000CFS – Extreme Caution; Experienced Boaters Only; 3000+ CFS – Dangerous; Guided Rafts Only; NO TUBING; Okay let’s say you decide to take a tubing trip on the Guadalupe River. If the flow is 100 CFS and you decide to tube the Horseshoe section of the Guadalupe River then the trip may take about 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Trying to tube through the whitewater park west of Eben G. Fine isn't recommended, since it has some burly rapids that can be quite dangerous. Just wear one and don’t become a statistic. Big drops, roiling rapids, refreshing cold water, and a leafy canopy make this the perfect outing for a hot summer day. Safety in numbers is a real thing and should be followed here. Not to be confused with a lazy river float, Kern River tubing is a full-on adventure, as you’ll tackle a handful of rapids as you make your way down the 1.73 mile run. Don’t be surprised if you flip. Flows between 350 to 550 cfs are above average, and should only be tubed by experienced people. Yes! A PFD on the other hand, won’t pop, can’t separate from you, and is Coast Guard approved. At any water flow, you should avoid the Lower Kern. Some parts of the lower Guadalupe may require getting out of the tube and walking across a shallow rock shelf, but the river is still fun. Nothing higher. The Guadalupe River Trout Unlimited chapter reports that above 909' elevation, flow rates will generally be the greater of: The flow rate at Spring Branch gage; or 250 cfs. Creek flows are measured in cubic feet per second (cfs). tel: 1-760-376-3370 Many people like to run laps from Eben G. Fine to the high school. Don’t wear sunglasses or anything else that can come off your body. Below 150 cfs release rate, and you will have to walk short distances where the water gets too shallow. Below is a river guage showing you the flow. Gauges are installed on rivers in order to measure the CFS and that information can be found on city water data sites. These may happen with little notice, so consult an outfitter if recent up river rains have been heavy. If you go head or feet first, keep your weight slightly forward as you ride the rapid to avoid sinking into a hole. The vast majority of serious river incidents involve someone not wearing a life jacket. Below is a river guage showing you the flow. Thank you for the response Matt. The Army seeks to keep the lake around conservation levels, as is the mission of the Canyon Lake. He's based in Southern California. It can’t be said enough: Wear a life jacket. From here, it's a short walk back to the shop. Stay connected by subscribing to our newsletter for special offers, guide updates, and season information. There are important considerations to pay attention to though, and this post will go into those items to help ensure you have a memorable and safe experience. During peak runoff (usually May and June and sometimes into July), the water is colder and faster, so brace yourself for serious whitewater action. Below 909.0, The Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority controls the flow. The ideal range for tubing is 100–200 cfs. It’s just not set up well for a tubing run and the numerous trees present a real strainer hazard. Comal River | San Marcos River | Guadalupe River | Frio River. Below 200 CFS it can still be fun, but be prepared to get stuck quite a bit. Alcohol and rivers don’t mix. © Copyright, Thank you for an amazing 2020 whitewater season. Tubing Boulder Creek is a local rite of passage, not to mention an adrenaline-fueled adventure. All material © 2020 Limestone Media. Contact Us | Terms of Use & Privacy | Updated 2020. The water is really freaking cold (like tooth-chattering cold after a while), especially earlier in the season. Put in is 8 am at Eben G. Fine Park. Our last trip of the year was on August 30. When the river is at conservation levels, it is under the control of the Guadalupe / Blanco River Authority. They have 54-inch super tubes (for people who are 5’10” or taller) and 48-inch pro tubes (for people who are shorter than 5’10”). If you’re just going do laps from Eben G. Fine to the library, you can probably skip the wetsuit since you’ll get warm while walking back upstream. 400 - 750 cfs: Gentle current - too slow to tube. Secure a zip tie around the center point, and then duct tape something like an old Frisbee into the middle to create a platform to protect your butt. The creek mellows out later in the summer. Don’t drink alcohol before or while tubing. Flows between 250 to 350 cfs are optimum. Leave a towel and dry set of clothes in your car since you’ll be chilly at the end. Creek flows are measured in cubic feet per second (cfs). Kern River tubing is not a solo activity. For these levels, we suggest you consult an outfitter for the area you'll be tubing. Above 909', it is in flood control level, and under the control of the US Army Corps of Engineers. When the water is low and the sun is out, tubing down the Lickety Split section of the Kern River is a highlight and for many, a rite of passage. The minimum flow is 90 - 100 cfs, and can be lower during drought. Looking for an excellent excuse to show up at work sopping wet with a big fat smile on your face? Water shoes or wetsuit booties are also key since you’ll be walking across a rocky bottom, kicking against rocks and other obstacles, and walking laps and/or back to your car. When you get to the Broadway bridge, stay right to avoid going over the spillway. Matt Volpert is the owner of Kern River Outfitters. Kayak, canoe, fishing boat, or tube ... help keep it clean and be a good neighbor. With a larger schedule of available trips, we anticipate being busier than usual. Even then, great caution should be exercised at all rapid areas and you may need to walk around them. Our company is a family business with sister outfits in Southern Oregon and on the Middle Fork of the Salmon, Idaho. Once flows crest 300 cfs, you better know what you’re doing before braving the rapids. Kern River Outfitters is an equal opportunity provider, and operates on a non-discriminatory basis | PUC Carrier ID: PSG0038493 (The creek is running between 200 and 250 cfs right now, making for an exciting ride.). The bicycle tubes also make handy handles. Flows above 550 cfs may be unsafe for parts of the river. Reserve one now! Even though wearing a life jacket while tubing might seem like overkill, keep in mind that a tube can easily deflate, or if you accidentally flip over, separate from you entirely. ☹️. So consider these flow levels as of 9:15 on July 12 th: Blue River below Breckenridge: 50 cfs We will still go this weekend and I expect flows may drop to about 140 by then. Whether you call it a PFD or a life jacket, it is critically important that you wear one while tubing on the Kern River. Careful to stay in the river. To find out the current creek flow, check out the Colorado Division of Water Resources graph. If you live in Boulder and have never tubed the creek, it's time to take a dip. This will be trial by fire, since you’ll hit some of the biggest rapids right off the bat. Try to keep a hold of your tube, and run the river with a buddy so you can help each other out. Many floats available - 830-964-3990. Live like a Boulder local whenever, wherever, Outdoor destinations + local stories & exclusive outdoor events. One cubic foot per second (cfs) is equal to the discharge through a rectangular cross section, 1 foot wide by 1 foot deep, flowing at an average velocity of 1 foot per second. I somewhat disagree with them as I had fun recently at flows below that, but I was getting stuck quite a bit. Nothing higher. © 2020 RootsRated, Inc. All rights reserved. What is the minimum CFS you would recommend to float Lickety near the end of the season?? A river is considered having high water when the CFS is 3,000 and above and low water is around 200/300 CFS. If you’re not up for the gnarly drops, put in at the east end of Eben G. Fine Park or even farther down toward 6th Street. Tubing season runs from May to August, depending on flows in Boulder Creek. Please enter your email to receive opening information for 2021. While we don’t offer tube rentals, you can buy a tube online using Amazon. Once flows crest 300 cfs, you better know what you’re doing before braving the rapids. Can sleep 4-8.

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