Whitewater rafting is the most popular recreational activity that occurs in Browns Canyon. Through the AHRA partnership, CPW manages commercial and private boating through Browns Canyon along with all recreational use on the Arkansas River from the confluence of the Lake Fork and East Fork of the Arkansas River to Lake Pueblo.
The Arkansas River is the most accessible way to enjoy the National Monument. The remote canyon provides a unique type of whitewater boating experience when compared to other segments of the Arkansas River, Allowing visitors to experience solitude in a natural setting while enjoying the scenery.
For more information on the water flows and float permits, visit http://bit.ly/1KqEsnW
Ruby Mountain Trailhead (Ruby Mountain Recreation Site) distances and estimated hiking times:
Roundtrip to river at Little Cottonwood via Turret Trail (#6045): 2.7 miles, 2 hours
Roundtrip to the river via the River Bench Trail (#6045A): 5.5 miles, 3 hours
Roundtrip to the river via River Access Trail (#6045B): 9 miles, 4.5 hours
Roundtrip including Catkin Gulch Loop (#6046): 11.5 miles, 5 hours
Roundtrip Ruby Mountain Trailhead to Forest Service Road 184: 11 miles, 5 hours
Hecla Junction Trailhead (Hecla Junction Recreation Site) distances and estimated hiking times:
Roundtrip out-and-back along the west bank of the river via Seidel’s Suckhole Trail: 2 miles, 1.5 hours
Turret Trail 6045 en route to the Arkansas River at Little Cottonwood Creek is a steep but short 2-mile roundtrip hike with wide views of the area’s northern half.
The 5.5 mile “in and out” hike along the gentle dead-end River Bench Trail 6045A provides a good sample of the northern Monument with an Arkansas River overlook.
The 11.5 miles Catkin Gulch Loop 6046 roundtrip via the Turret Trail 6405 goes deep into the Monument for a fuller experience of its wilderness character.
For more information about trails and hiking in the area, visit http://brownscanyon.org/map/
The Arkansas River within the AHRA is a world class fishery and provides an excellent opportunity for anglers to test their skills at catching brown and rainbow trout. As a testament to the excellent fishery, CPW designated the Arkansas River from the confluence with the Lake Fork of the Arkansas River downstream to Parkdale, Colorado (102 miles), as a Gold Medal Trout Fishery in 2014. This addition to the Gold Medal registry is the state’s longest-nearly a third of Colorado’s 322 Gold Medal river miles in a single segment. The Gold Medal designation itself doesn’t carry any special fishing regulations; however, a valid Colorado Fishing License is required and other special fishing regulations apply within certain portions of the Gold Medal stretch of river. For more information, please refer to CPW fishing regulations (http://cpw.state.co.us/Documents/RulesRegs/Brochure/fishing.pdf).