We do the full day Royal Gorge trip with Buffalo Joe's on Saturday with newbies and any experienced riders who also wish to go. This trip starts off on Class III water before breaking for lunch; the break will give newbies a chance to evaluate the experience before deciding whether or not to continue with the rest of the trip, which goes into Class IV rapids. Then we do Clear Creek Advanced with AVA half day trip on Sunday for the experienced riders, maybe even doing both morning and afternoon sessions if there's enough interest.Some basic info: The dates are June 21st and 22nd, and the prices are on the web sites. If everyone who has tentatively said they are coming comes, we might have enough people for the group discount. The way this works is we have to reserve the trip(s) in advance. This means someone (Waterboy or myself) has to put it on a credit card. I think it was last year, some said they were coming and did a no show, leaving WB stuck paying the bill. So, if your coming and you haven't come before, I need your contact info. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org, there is a link on the side bar as well.
Doing them in this order will give the newbies a chance to get their feet wet (ha!) before deciding whether they want to tackle something harder right away. And we can always flip the days around if need be, though I wouldn't advise newbies going on the harder trip first.
My thoughts: I've rafted Colorado several times. I like it lot. The Royal Gorge is a good trip with some fun rapids. If you're new to rafting, you'll enjoy the trip. After each set of rapids there is a stretch of calm water where you get a little break in the action to rest up. The paddling isn't very hard and they feed you lunch. This is a very good first timer trip.
Clear Creek is a new run for our group this year. At least I don't remember if we've run it together. It looks like fun. If you're in half way ok physical shape and you enjoy a thrill, this should be a fun run. You have to paddle a bit more than the Gorge. We've gone with AVA several times. The guides are very professional, and even if your new to rafting, you will have fun on this run. You will get wet, it doesn't matter what seat you have in the boat. If you're wanting to "try it out" on the Gorge and then see on Clear Creek, let us know, if you're sure you want to do both, and you do want to do both, let us know that too.
This looks like a good year for newbies to join up. Water Boy has a good mix of fun runs picked out that everyone will enjoy.