The two partnered to offer affordable outdoor activities to community members. About 20 adults and children attended.
The trip began at the west fork of the upper Dolores River and ended at Lost Canyon Creek.
Attendees were fitted with life jackets and given instructions by Mild to Wild, a rafting and Jeep tour company based in Durango, on how to paddle and what the three guides’ instructions meant.
The trip also included a lunch break in which Dolores River Boating Advocate Board member Wade Hanson gave a demonstrative talk about Leave No Trace.
The program, officially called, “The Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics” is a national organization that seeks to protect the outdoors by teaching people to enjoy it responsibly.
According to the executive director of the Dolores River Boating Advocates, Amber Clark, the trip was in partnership with the Cortez Recreation Center with funding from the $1.8 million dollar grant received by the Montezuma Inspire Coalition to get youths in Montezuma County outside.
They were able to provide the trip at a reduced rate of $15 per person because of the organization’s relationship with Mild to Wild and through the Inspire Coalition grant.
“We are trying to make this accessible to folks that might not always be able to get out and do something like this,” Clark said. “We are trying to get kids and families out on the water.”
Cortez recreation supervisor Rosa Dimon said a family of four usually cannot afford a $400 rafting trip, which made this opportunity special.
“I worked with the Dolores River Boating Advocates to plan the youth and family rafting trip that we are taking today,” Dimon said.
“The partnership is beneficial to us because we use the connections that we can and we try to give an affordable option for families and people in our community.”
Dimon said she wants to include as many people as possible on the types of trips, and the partnership with DRBA helped make that possible.