It’s snowing!

And it’s supposed to snow all week. The skiers are stoked. The snowmobilers are stoked. Our puppy is REALLY really stoked. Let’s just hope this continues through the winter. If it does then maybe, just maybe, we’ll be able to run packrafting trips on Dolores River from McPhee Reservoir and downriver in 2022. Every packrafter and bikerafter should pray to whatever gods they believe in for more water in the Southwest in 2022. But before we jump the gun… Here’s a recap of 2021.

We hope you have an awesome new year and that all your adventure dreams and wishes come true in 2022.

Best, Doom & Lizzy

Aluminyze print
From the top of Weber Mountain, looking up Weber Canyon on a snowy December day. All photos by Steve "Doom" Fassbinder.

A Year In Review

Covid made it a tough year for everyone in our industry. Bookings jumped all over the place, and cancellations due to Covid happened frequently. Still, we had a successful year, earning more than we did in 2020 and building an even bigger Four Corners Community. We had our first repeat customers, and we ran significantly more Learn to Packraft courses than we ran the previous year. Plus, we’ve already got numerous tours booked for spring 2022. Woohoo! We are especially excited about our 6-day Expedition Packraft Course w/ Swiftwater Rescue Certification. We’re bringing Dan Thurber on to co-instruct this with Doom and Ben Phillips. Plus, we’ve got some new upcoming Glen Canyon National Recreation Area bikeraft courses in the works.

Advanced Expedition Packrafting Course w/ Swiftwater Rescue Certification
Our Expedition Packraft Course will give you the skills you need to embark on backcountry adventures with challenging whitewater.

Click on the photos to see the Facebook Galleries!

Bikerafting Glen Canyon National REcreation Area

Fall Bikeraft Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

Learn to Packraft on the Dolores River

Summer Learn to Packraft - Various Rivers

Ute Mountain Ute Tribal Park

Fall Bike Missions to the Ute Mountain Ute Tribal Park

Summer Learn to Bikepack Courses in the San Juan NF

learn to bikeraft on mcphee reservoir

Summer Learn to Bikeraft on McPhee Reservoir

Corporate Adventure Retreats Gaia GPS

Corporate Adventure Retreats! Bikerafting with Gaia GPS

The Bikeraft Guide

Don’t try this at home!

We did it! We wrote, raised money for, published and distributed our first book, “The Bikeraft Guide: The Ultimate How-To Guide, History Of, Wild Adventure Stories About Bikerafting.” We printed and have nearly sold out of 1000 copies. Few retailers, except for Packraft Europe, have copies left. But you can try Kokopelli Bike & Board, Durango Cyclery and Pineneedle Mountaineering. Absolute Bakery will be carrying them locally in Mancos in the new year. We are also in discussions with a publisher who is “very interested” in purchasing publishing rights. But these things take time. Stay tuned.

Bikerafting Glen Canyon National Recreation Area
Andrew Burr bikerafting on the Colorado River on a recon mission to see how far down river we'd have to paddle to reach Lake Powell. Severe drought has caused significant drops in lake levels in the last two years.

There’s No Place Like Home

As we speak, Lizzy is writing this blog post from Scullbinder Ranch, where she’s sitting on her black Italian leather couch (the set of which we acquired for less than $350 from rich people in Telluride) in front of her wood-burning stove (which another kind soul gave us). Doom made our new house, formerly known as “the Barn,” out of 80% repurposed materials. He has hoarded building materials for a decade from old construction jobs. And we acquired significant additional materials from dozens of sources, including Lizzy’s mom’s old lake house in Virginia, which we tore down in 2019 for the pine wood that is now the ceiling of the house. Doom is a master craftsman, and every detail of our the Four Corners Guide basecamp main house was carefully thought out.

We “finished” the house just in time for our first corporate adventure retreat with the Gaia Group. We spent five days with them, catering all their meals, teaching them how to packraft on the Animas River and then taking them on a three-day bikerafting adventure to the San Juan National Forest and onto McPhee Reservoir. It was our first corporate retreat, and it won’t be our last. Fun! 

And, last but not least, we moved into the Main House at the Ranch (aka “The Barn”) full time September 2021, only to have the well dry up a few weeks later. D’OH! So we installed some cisterns and now haul water from town. And just in the nick of time, by November, we got the wood burning stove and heaters up and running. There’s still much to do at the Ranch, but we couldn’t be happier to have this dream come to frution. A big hearty thanks to ALL the dozens of people who helped us build it, drywall, clean up the grounds, etc, etc, etc. It really feels like this was a community project. We love you!

Scullbinder Ranch
We moved into the Scullbinder Ranch main house, aka "the barn," fall 2021.
Scullbinder Ranch
The view from Weber Mountain looking down at the Ranch and into the Ute Mountain Ute Tribal Park.
Scullbinder Ranch
Looking down from the hills on our property to the East, toward Bureau of Land Management lands.
Inside the Great Room of the Main House.
Scullbinder Ranch
Just one sample of a gourmet dinner made with locally-grown produce.
Scullbinder Ranch
Our amazing, efficient wood-burning stove.
The view from the Main House into the Ute Mountain Ute Tribal Park.