Why Does My Car Not Have Tires?
Or more importantly, why can’t I float Santa Elena Canyon?
Back about 40 years ago, when we first started Far Flung, all of us took the Rio Grande for granted. There was plenty of water year round and rafts were the only craft used on the river (other than aluminum fishing boats, but that is another story).
Then stuff happened. More irrigation of the river. Exotic plant species that used more water than the natural vegetation. A constant fanning of the Rio Grande away from its natural channels. Less rainfall.
All of these things combined to change the river levels to the point that outfitters, like us, started using canoes to better navigate the shallow waters.
We still run the river every day. And the majestic scenery of Big Bend has not changed. But the water has. So, when you call us and we sound like used car salesmen trying to sell you a car without tires, it’s not because we want to – it is because we want your experience to be the best.
And that is why you may or may not run Santa Elena in a day in a raft. Our advice? Get out there on the Rio Grande and see it the same way Native Americans and first explorers saw it hundreds of years ago.
In any craft, in any section of the river, at any water levels. You won’t regret it.