Float the Green River through Labyrinth Canyon

Utah Ruby Ranch Boat Launch

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This is an awesome float trip for any beginner. The views are outstanding and there are multiple hikes to arches and historic sites to explore. 

This trip goes 45 miles between Ruby Ranch and Mineral Bottom on the Green River in Utah north of Canyonlands National Park.  Labyrinth Canyon is known for it's massive beautiful walls and oasis landscape surrounding the river. This entire section of water is flat water and can be done with no technical experience. 

The two most important details of this trip are shuttles and permits.  First, call the multiple shuttle companies in Moab to arrange a shuttle or arrange to have multiple cars to shuttle yourselves (the latter option would add hours to your trip).  Choose the shuttle that works best for your budget and group.  Some of the shuttles provide boats as well.  We opted to have our car shuttled from the put-in to take-out by a company while we were on the river.  I highly recommend this option because it is economical and saves the most time.  If you are planning to go on a busy weekend, make sure to call Ruby Ranch and let them know wha date you will be putting in.  Ruby Ranch is a private ranch that charges $10 a boat for people to put in on the river there. Second, permits can be obtained from any BLM or river guide service free of charge.  There is no maximum number of permits issued, so no need to stress.

I highly recommend getting the guide book, Canyonlands River Guide.  The guide book contains detailed descriptions of the river as well as camping spots (which can be hard to find) and highlights along the way.  

If you are coming from the east on I-70, take off on Exit 175 and turn left on Old Highway Elgin.  This road turns into Ruby Ranch Road.  Follow the signs through BLM land all the way to the closed gate that says no trespassing.  This is the gate you will go through to get to the river put-in (don't be confused).  The BLM land before this point has tons of dispersed camping.

Try to put-in as early as possible.  Depending on how high the river is, this trip could take 2 days or up to 4 days.  When we went the river was flowing high and we could have floated it in almost 1 day.  Once you're on the river, the trip is up to you.  There are far too many options to describe here. Along the way there are cliff to jump, areas to explore, sites to see and fun to be had.  The take-out at Mineral Bottom will be obvious with a vault toilet and large boat ramp.  Another sign you are at the end of your journey is passing what is called the Bowtie.  Just remember to not go past the take-out because it can be hard to figure out a shuttle to get back and after Mineral Bottom you are in Canyonlands Nation Park, which requires a different permit.

The best part of this trip is enjoying your time floating down a river in a pristine wilderness.  Make sure to take your time and truly take it all in.

Remember to leave no trace and pack out everything.  

Pack List

  • raft/kayak/canoe/paddle board
  • life jacket
  • paddles
  • dry sacks
  • tent
  • groover
  • 3-4 days of food
  • 5 gallons of water per person
  • tent
  • sleeping bag
  • sun hat
  • sunscreen 
  • sunglasses
  • cooking stove
  • gas
  • pot/pan
  • water filter
  • water bottle
  • swimsuit
  • clothes
  • firewood 
  • fire pan
  • toilet paper
  • tarp
  • bug spray
  • sleeping pad
  • hammock
  • lantern
  • lighter
  • water shoes
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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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Activities:

Stand Up Paddle, Canoeing, Camping, Rafting, Kayaking

Skill Level:

Beginner

Season:

Summer, Autumn

Rating:

Features:

Dog Friendly
Family Friendly
River
Scenic
Cliff Jumping

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about 2 months ago

Great 3 Day Trip!

We just got back from this float trip and it was amazing! We had a group of 11 with 8 boats: 2 canoes, and 6 kayaks. It was perfect. Plenty of amazing views, and we were able to do some side exploring. Don't miss the hike up to the saddle at Bowknot bend, the views are breathtaking! The trip does take some coordination (we did our own shuttle), and when the wind is high paddling can be difficult. Totally worth it!

about 2 months ago

Added by Devin K

My passion is to be outside exploring. Every weekend my wife and I take off to the mountains or the desert to find something new. I try to capture the places we visit to share them with people to hopefully make a connection and a desire to protect these places.

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