Please call before going. River right eddy is small and hard to re-enter from at all levels. There are good warm up rapids for next two miles. 3 miles below Ten Mile, as you go through a slight left bend, watch for a group of large logs deposited on an island above the rapid (most of the current- 90%- is going right of the island).
At 4000+ this is a very good feature, but be quick to hit the eddy or you’ll be hiking. A tricky drop with a large boulder on the right signals caution as ‘Snowshed’ (Class IV) is only 50 yards downstream. Please be aware that you cannot rely on Durango/Silverton Railroad as a means of emergency access (but please try to if you need help.) Both of these sections are complicated by access and landowner issues.
Expert Kayakers, and open boaters can continue downstream through the Lower Gorge to Rockwood. ‘Ten Mile Slide’ A short steep drop marks the end of Elk Park. Levels in the 3000+ range can get pretty sticky and this feature becomes a very large, river-wide wave hole at 6000+ that has been known to surf 16′ rafts for more than a couple minutes. Hiking in along the train tracks is illegal, so if you brave this run, only hike in early morning, mid-day around noon, or after the last train has passed around 4pm. At medium to high flows, there are several sections that are non-stop continuous Class III-IV for several miles without pause, some of which lead into Class V. Swims at all of the bigger rapids have proven to be fatal, so use extreme caution. … The river right eddy is very swirly and the river left eddy becomes very hard to catch at higher flows. Mt Garfield dominates the skyline to the left. Bring every piece of layering you own, even if its sunny out. This map contains all public fishing access areas, rapids, rapid classifications, campgrounds, boat put in locations, and parking areas .
The season on the Animas River is longer than that of most Colorado streams. The next few miles below this rapid are very continuous Class III+/IV, so set safety below the crux and stay heads up for the next few miles. Plan on approx 2 hours of paddling on the Upper stretch and 3+ hours on the lower stretch. Wetsuits and paddle jackets are a minimum, but drysuits are HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, and kayakers and open boaters should wear hand protection and skull caps (even if it feels too warm at the put-it. The run is long – 24.2 miles if taking out at the Tacoma power plant, or 26.8 miles if running through the Upper Rockwood Box – but the gradient is steep and the flow is fast. There is little river bank scouting possible in the gorge and boat scouting is mandatory for those unfamiliar with the run or water level. Trust us!) There is a 1.5 mile legal hike-out to the right of the Tacoma farm house, up a steep gully that eventually deposits you at Haviland Lake. This map contains all public fishing access areas, rapids, rapid classifications, campgrounds, boat put in locations, and parking areas. We HIGHLY recommend scouting this feature at all water levels.
The second feature is Corner Pocket. Hike in at your own risk. Hike out on the steep trail to the Rockwood Station where you have left your shuttle.