Reserve Your Summer White Water Rafting Trip

Spring temperatures are arriving in Colorado and that means water levels will rise! As runoff progresses, we’re looking forward to an awesome season of rafting!

It’s no secret that when the snowpack is well above average, an epic rafting season is just around the corner. Check out this regularly updated national snow survey to see what conditions you can expect! If there are prime weather conditions, you can bet white water enthusiasts are already busy planning summer adventures. Prime dates will fill up fast, so if you have a trip in mind, we recommend reserving your summer rafting dates early!

We offer a wide range of rafting experiences to suit different ages and ability levels. Here’s an overview of our rafting adventures:

Float Series (Class II)

Our Float Series rafting adventures are perfect for all ages. These trips on the upper Colorado River travel through beautiful canyons where you’ll enjoy splashing through waves and leisurely swimming holes. We even offer a Ducky Trip, giving you the opportunity to captain your own two-person raft! For more information, check out our Float Series.

Adventure Series (Class III)

Our Adventures series summer white water rafting trips provide the excitement of rapids and spectacular Colorado canyon scenery. You won’t be able to wipe the grin off your face. These trips are widely varying depending on the season and interests of your group. They include stretches of the Colorado River, Gore Creek, the lower Eagle River, and the world-renown Brown’s Canyon on the Arkansas River. Find more details on our Adventure Series.

Adrenaline Series (Class IV & V)

Our Adrenaline Series trips offer some of the best nonstop action on the most well-known stretches of white water in Colorado. Experienced rafters will tell you that the Numbers and Pine Creek Sections of the Arkansas River are some of the best. But don’t overlook our local river in the Vail Valley. The Eagle River offers some of the best summer white water rafting in the state. Check out our Adrenaline Series.

To reserve your dates for an summer rafting trip, call us now at 970-476-3700 or contact us online. Let’s plan your adventure!

After the Lifts Close: Enjoying Spring in Colorado

Many ski lifts across Colorado will make their final rotations of the season in April, and Sage will also close our snowmobiling tours around that time. While the winter season is coming to an end, it won’t be long until summer season picks up and there’s plenty to do to stay busy! But with a few weeks until our summer activities begin, you can be sure the crew here at Sage will be enjoying some well-deserved time off!

Spring Activities in Vail, Colorado

In the meantime, there are still plenty of ways to enjoy the lingering snow in the high country, especially after a good year of snowfall. Enjoy the spring sunshine on a pair of snowshoes or cross-country skis. For the climbing enthusiasts, the hefty snowpack this season will allow for some outstanding routes on some of Colorado’s 14,000-foot peaks. This will be a great season for 14ers, with some perfect ski or glissade descents.

Hiking our National Parks

If you’re looking for things to do that don’t involve snow, there are plenty of options. Most hiking trails at lower elevations have opened up. This is a great time of year to visit Colorado’s red desert country. Colorado National Monument and Dinosaur National Monument provide ideal spring hiking conditions.

Not far away, national parks in Utah and Arizona are also great spring destinations. In fact, the Sage rafting team has made trips to raft the Salt River in Arizona before heading to the National Championships! Check out photos and updates from our practice runs and the racing event here.

Guided fly fishing in Vail Colorado

Fishing the Pre-Runoff Rivers

Finally, anglers often enjoy an excellent spring fishing season when the pre-runoff conditions are good. Many bodies of water around the state fish very well in the late winter season. However, as runoff begins to take hold, these conditions will change rapidly. Luckily, our expert fishing guides know the best spots to fish and hook onto beautiful wild trout, even during peak runoff season.

Summer Activities to Look Forward To

As much as we enjoy our spring break, we can’t wait for summer to get back into full swing! We’re looking forward to some great rafting, horseback riding, ATV tours, and fly fishing adventures. Check our guided activities and book your spot now to get back out into the wildness with Sage. Until then, you can bet our team will be out enjoying the best of spring in Colorado!

It’s Time to Start Practicing Your Kayak Roll

Kayaking

Spring is officially here and the paddling season has already begun in many places. In just a couple of months, we will be taking our first whitewater trips of the year here at Sage Outdoor Adventures. We’re looking forward to a great rafting season, especially with the amount of snow that we’ve received in the Colorado high country this year.

As spring approaches, it’s time to begin preparing. If you’re planning on spending time in your kayak this season, now is the time to start practicing your kayak roll. This is an important skill for kayakers of any ability or experience level.

Early this spring, begin your practice in the pool. For some tips, we chatted with Sage Owner and Director of Operations, Cole Bangert. Here are Cole’s tips on getting started.

“Start by working on hip snaps, because that’s the most important part of the roll,” Cole told us. “With a good hip snap, you don’t even need a paddle. Use the side of the pool. Hold onto it with your hands, and hip snap until your abs feel like they’re going to fall off.

Some of your practice will depend on what style roll you are learning.

“The two primary rolls are a sweep roll and a C2C roll,” Cole continued. “I have found the sweep roll to be stronger in big, pushy whitewater. However, keep in mind that everybody will end up developing their own style of roll, depending on what works for them.”

When you’ve got your hip snaps down and you’re ready to use a paddle in the water, there’s one critical thing that you always need to remember.

“It is imperative that your head comes up last,” Cole emphasized. “The number one mistake that people make is to lead with their head and try to pull the rest of their body up. That makes a hip snap impossible. It pulls the heaviest part of your upper body out of the water and makes finishing the roll nearly impossible.”

Good luck with your early season practice and get out there and have some fun this season. For more information on rafting trips and other summer activities with Sage Outdoor Adventures, please check out our Summer Page or call us at 970-476-3700.

Spring Break in the Rockies: Big Storms and Plenty of Sunshine

Spring Break in the Rockies

For those of you looking forward to Spring Break vacations, there’s a lot to get excited about when planning a trip to Colorado!

Spring Weather in Colorado

Spring in Colorado usually means two things: giant storms and abundant sunshine. Many folks are surprised to learn that historically, March brings more snowfall than any other month in Colorado. Here in the Rockies, spring storms tend to be measured in feet, not inches.

In between each big dump of snow, there’s rarely an overcast day. Sunshine is the norm. As the days get longer, the sun is getting stronger. So do not forget sunscreen on your spring break snowmobile rides! Sun protection for spring vacationers to Colorado is no joke. In addition to sunscreen, a good pair of goggles is essential to protect your eyes in bright, snowy conditions.

Spring Activities for your Break

Our guests enjoy awesome outdoor adventures throughout the year. Depending on the weather, we capitalize on this natural playground with everything from snowmobiling tours to backcountry skiing. Those great 50-degree slopes usually become available in May after the spring slide cycle, so be sure to keep an eye on the weather forecast and plan your trip early to be the first to tear up the new snow.

If you’re lucky, the weather will play along perfectly for a great climbing season on Colorado’s 14,000-foot peaks. Some fun snow routes become available for the 14er enthusiasts, plus opportunities to glissade down. There’s a lot of adventure to look forward to over the next few months!

Finally, if you’re getting as excited as we are about summer activities like rafting, be sure to check out our homepage for all of our latest information. Or give us a call at 970-476-3700 for trip booking info. We look forward to seeing you here at Sage Outdoor Adventures!

The Importance of Suspension for Serious Snowmobile Riders

Snowmobile

By Cole Bangert

Suspension is a crucial part of the setup for more aggressive and advanced snowmobile riders. It changes the entire feel of the machine. Over the past several years, I’ve been spoiled by Fox Racing Shocks and have learned why great suspension makes a world of difference.

Correct suspension settings allow a rider to approach any terrain far more aggressively. With proper suspension, the sled becomes more predictable. This affects the proper ride height, weight distribution, and rebound and compression rates.

Stock suspension on most snowmobiles tends to be soft. Soft suspension creates an unsettled feeling in the sled. It can feel somewhat unstable at high speeds and unpredictable in changing snow densities. When encountering unforeseen obstacles or firm snow layers, a rider will “slap” the bottom of the suspension. This is an awful feeling. It’s a resounding slapping noise that can be heard over the motor. The result is not good. It hurts your wrists, ankles, sled, and confidence.

Aftermarket suspension, especially Fox, will not increase the amount of suspension travel you get on a snowmobile, but is infinitely more tunable. You can set it up correctly for your particular ride weight, style and terrain.

The “spring rate” is what holds you and the sled off the ground. Traditional springs are steel or titanium. Most vehicles on the road have same thing, steel springs holding the weight of the car. Most Fox Shocks for snowmobiles have an air spring. There is a pressurized air chamber holding the weight up. This offers a different feel from steel and is also highly adjustable. With nothing more than a pocket size pump, changes can easily be made on the fly.

The next point of consideration is damping. To understand damping, picture a pogo stick. When compressed, it rebounds and flings you right back up in the air. Not something you want to happen in suspension. Damping is what slows the compression and rebound so the reaction of the shock is manageable.

Damping is also adjustable. It can be as easy as using a clicker knob on the outside of the shock. There are typically high and low speed adjusters for compression and rebound. This is often confusing for riders, so here is a simple way to decipher high speed versus low speed damping:

Low speed damping is your body weight. This includes anything you are doing to the shock by pushing down with your body weight, like compressions on the face of a jump. The speed of your shock compressing and rebounding is quite slow on these.

High-speed damping comes from the ground up. This might be a square edge bump that you hit at a fast rate of speed. Your shock compression and rebound speed are very fast and abrupt. You need faster rebound on this type of obstacle because there may be multiple obstacles right after one another. If your rebound is too slow, your shock will not recover to full length before the next hit. This causes the suspension to “pack up” and operate on the bottom of the stroke, which is not a good feeling.

Good suspension is a must for any semi serious to serious snowmobile rider. It changes the game, changes how and where you will ride. It’s a major confidence booster, and confidence is everything in a rider.

For more information on snowmobile rides and the other adventures we offer near Vail, Colorado, please explore the rest of our website at SageOutdoorAdventures.com or call us at 970-476-3700.