Kayak Horseshoe Bend

Departure Preparation

Departure preparation for Glen Canyon & Horseshoe Bend

Have all your gear packed and organized into totes or duffel bags. Have all your packing done before you unload your vehicle. Packing at the ramp can take valuable time and this is a heavy vehicle traffic area.

Allow sufficient time before your scheduled trip to unload all your equipment. Be ready to meet the backhaul boat at the pre-arranged departure time. 

Pay your entrance fee at the fee station or have a legal park pass. Leave your pass on the dash or seat of your vehicle where it is clearly visible.

Check to make sure that you have all the required safety equipment before departure.

Your adventure will begin by meeting your Lees Ferry Kayak Horseshoe Bend backhaul boat and captain at the concrete Lees Ferry Boat launch. This is the only ramp to launch and retrieve boats that are heading upriver so it is important to keep the concrete launch area clear of boats and equipment. When you arrive to unload, be sure to park as close to either side of the concrete ramp as possible. (The dirt launch area is reserved for Grand Canyon river launches, so do not use this area.) Unload your gear and boats as quickly as possible and place everything off to either side of the boat launch, off the concrete.

As soon as you are unloaded, move your vehicle up into the parking area onto the dirt lot to the north of the restrooms. If you are doing an overnight trip, park your vehicle in the 14-day lot which is up near the National Park Service Headquarters. Please be aware that if you are doing an overnight trip and your vehicle is left in the dirt lot it will be ticketed or towed.

You will now transition to the floating boat ramp where all your equipment and boats will be loaded onto the backhaul boat. If you are early, place everything onto the gravel area in front of the boat dock and wait until your captain tells you that it
is time to load. Then bring all your boats and equipment onto the boat dock and begin loading your gear onto the backhaul boat. Keep clear of other boats and leave plenty of room for people to pass on and off the dock area. You will need to help the captain load the boat, so please obey instructions as to how and where the gear is placed. When all is loaded, the captain will give a short safety speech with
instruction on where to sit. Now your adventure begins. Have a camera handy and be prepared to enjoy one of the most spectacular boat rides on planet Earth!

When you return to the boat launch after completing your float. Park your boats off to either side of the concrete boat park the vehicle you are loading near the side of the ramp where your boats are parked. Do not clutter the loading ramp with gear or boats. Keep this area clear for boats and vehicles launching and retrieving boats. If you arrive at the launch and no boats or vehicles are there, keep it clear as it can
become crowded very quickly. Pack and load as quickly as possible then pull off the ramp to continue your final packing in the lot above.

Arrival at the beach

You will have prearranged with your captain as to where you will be dropped off. When you arrive, the captain will park the boat and you will disembark and prepare to unload your boats and equipment. Be prepared to wade in the water. You will be up to knee deep. The water is very cold year-round, so be prepared with the proper clothing and shoes. Everyone will chip in to unload the boat. Once the boat is unloaded, the captain will depart, so be sure to take an inventory to make sure that you have everything. Do not leave any personal gear on the boat. A gratuity for the captain is always appreciated.

At this point you are now on your own to enjoy the solitude, the beauty and adventure of Glen Canyon. Be safe, use good judgement, and leave no trace behind.