July trip out of Bullfrog

Ryan

Keeper of San Juan Secrets
Recap of Independence Day Trip

Arrived at Bullfrog on Thursday, June 27. Had an absolute torrential rainstorm from south of Hanksville to about the Bullfrog Mountain. Temp dropped all the way down to 57* and my better half was concerned we may need sweatshirts when we unloaded, but it cleared up and was a balmy 97* when we arrived around 400 pm.

The parking lot near the slips was less crowded than I have seen (maybe ever in the summer). Was able to park one truck/boat trailer at the top of the hill, and one over to the left, so it wasn’t a terrible walk down to the slips. When we returned (Saturday, July 6), the lower lot was basically full.

Since this is a July trip, and July is much too warm to fish, we took the wakeboats this trip (REAL wakeboats). Our theme for this year was villains, so it was fitting. The plan was to just wreak havoc and mayhem for the full week. We wanted to start our terror by focusing on the elderly, women, children, and disabled, but we had trouble finding anyone in those classes, so we went to “plan b”.

We stayed the first day/night in Rincon, but the water was unpleasant for water sports – REALLY stained, and tons of debris. The next day we moved south, found clear water beyond Escalante, so we went a little further and holed up.

We spent the rest of our trip between Cathedral and Escalante. Water was clear, traffic was minimal. Water temps ranged from a low of 78* to a high of 85*. Air temperatures ranged from upper 90’s to low 100’s for highs. It did cool down a little around 400 am. We never had a significant amount of “W” (I can’t say or write that terrible word).

I did see some slups, one in Rincon, one at the mouth of Escalante, and one (several times) just upstream from San Juan.

When we weren’t terrorizing others, we entertained ourselves with forbidden water sports – slalom skiing, wakeboarding, wake foiling (both sit down and stand up), and the DREADED surfing. With the high air temps, we also spent a considerable amount of time cooling off in the water.

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IMG_1586.jpegIMG_1587.jpegOn the way in, just as we rounded the corner to Halls, we heard a “Mayday” call on channel 16. The houseboat in front of us reported a boat “sinking in the mouth of Halls Creek”. I unhooked the Malibu to get up their quickly, then moved our houseboat up there as fast as I could. While I didn’t see it firsthand, a smaller bow rider basically completely submerged between the time I heard the call, and when we got up to them (less than 5 minutes). The adults in the boat that originally hailed for assistance were occupied, I continued the communication with NPS.

I know there has been a lot of stones thrown at them, and I realize this was in their “back yard”, but I was very impressed at the speed of their response (even when they were told that all souls were safe and accounted for). Within 10-15 minutes they had 3 patrol boats and one support boat on scene.

In the photos you can see the very tip of the bow of the boat tied to the first houseboat on the scene. You can also see multiple (there were 5) wakeboats there assisting (or maybe they were there purely to plunder any valuables floating after the wreck?).
 
Nice report and pictures as always Ryan. Too bad you didn’t get to do some terrorizing as planned! It was peaceful down that far a couple of weeks ago. I have always wanted to watch your crew when your having fun, I think you totally enjoy the week you’re there and as you’ve said in the past you would let me hurt myself trying your sport!😂. Getting way too old for that now but it looks like a ton of fun.
We must have just missed the boat sinking, we left lost Eden around noon and headed home. I would say thanks to you for attempting to help those in trouble, that’s a horrible day for them.
 
What was the full story on the sunk boat? Is it now a buoy in the channel, sitting at the bottom, or did they get it back to the marina to be rescued? That photo look like it was going to make it, but maybe the lines held?
Good question. I only have speculation. The first boat on the scene said that the boat did not hit anything, but it was a small boat that was overloaded. There was no wind or really any wakes when we went through, so I don't know. I will say there was very little floating debris, so whatever they had on board must have been heavy enough to sink along with the boat.

NPS ordered the boat to be untied from the houseboat, and in quick order it sunk the rest of the way. It was probably a couple hundred yards from shore and in water that is 200' + deep. It will surely be a chore to recover (if they do).
n the past you would let me hurt myself trying your sport!😂. Getting way too old for that now but it looks like a ton of fun.
You're always welcome to join us. The stand up foil and surfing are pretty low impact. We will be back in September.
Looks like an awesome time, we all need a friend group like this!
We are blessed. We've had basically the same group for about 10 years now. Houseboating is a lot of work. It's good to have people who are not only willing to help, but they also know what to do (and how to have a great time).
We must have just missed the boat sinking, we left lost Eden around noon and headed home.
It happened about 1400.
 
View attachment 28637View attachment 28638On the way in, just as we rounded the corner to Halls, we heard a “Mayday” call on channel 16. The houseboat in front of us reported a boat “sinking in the mouth of Halls Creek”. I unhooked the Malibu to get up their quickly, then moved our houseboat up there as fast as I could. While I didn’t see it firsthand, a smaller bow rider basically completely submerged between the time I heard the call, and when we got up to them (less than 5 minutes). The adults in the boat that originally hailed for assistance were occupied, I continued the communication with NPS.

I know there has been a lot of stones thrown at them, and I realize this was in their “back yard”, but I was very impressed at the speed of their response (even when they were told that all souls were safe and accounted for). Within 10-15 minutes they had 3 patrol boats and one support boat on scene.

In the photos you can see the very tip of the bow of the boat tied to the first houseboat on the scene. You can also see multiple (there were 5) wakeboats there assisting (or maybe they were there purely to plunder any valuables floating after the wreck?).
The bald Dude on the right is trying to tune in to what station?
 
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