What is the weather like at Lee's Ferry month to month?
The weather at Lee's Ferry varies from month to month throughout the year. Here at Kayak the Colorado we have a saying, there's no bad days in Arizona, just bad gear. It only rains an average of 12 days a year in the Arizona desert, giving one a great chance of staying dry most times of year. The temperatures on the other hand can vary from 30 degree fahrenheit low between December and February and a 100+ degrees Fahrenheit in the summer. Not to worry during the hotter months, theres a beautiful, crystal clear river right below your kayak if you ever want to cool off. The Colorado River is Arizona's best kept secret.
In the cooler months of Spring and Fall layer up. Not that it is particularly cold kayaking the Colorado but don't forget the ride up. The first half of your journey we will jet upstream at 30 mph. Early in the morning it may be quite nice and sunny on the dock, but as we get started we will be running upstream and passing through bubbles of shade. There's plenty of room on the kayak for a hoodie or jacket, and it is nice to arrive upstream comfortable and ready for a hike instead of shivering. The second bonus to bringing extra gear, if in the rare case you come across someone that wasn't paying attention, and they happened to capsize, you may save their day. It's never a bad idea to have backup clothes, theres plenty of room on the kayak.
The winds of May, not an everyday occurrence, but frequent enough through the month that river runners tend to plan earlier backhauls than normal so they can duck the winds in the afternoon that usually start from 2-3 pm when they are present. Five days prior to the trip one can take a good look at the possible winds and plan accordingly using windy.com 10 day forecast. On the windy.com there are two wind speeds to take a look at, the general wind speed and the gusts. When the gusts are over 25 mph companies tend to cancel the day trips. If you are camping you have wiggle room where you can play with the wind, but it all depends on your tolerance for the wind. When in doubt, give us a call for our advice. 928-856-0012 Brady
Weather in the summer generally changes from possible winds in May to a dead heat up after the first week of June. Generally in Arizona the desert starts to hit the 100's and the weather patterns start to heat up the desert for 3 weeks to get the monsoons kickstarted. During this time the winds tend to die down to nothing. Although the monsoon season officially starts in July, these days, the rain potential doesn't kick in until August. During the hot days of summer folks want to pay attention to their skin protection. Hat, sunglasses, and the sun shirts are priceless. Don't forget your thigh protection. A towell, a light scarf, etc. and protect your thighs from the burn. If you are heating up on the water jumping in is a great way to turn the 100 degree temps into the 70-80's feel. It feels amazing, and really changes ones attitude quickly.
August to September we usually get a couple of gully washers. If you come prepared they can be amazing on the water. Monsoon storms are usually short lived but if you can pull over for the short wind that precedes the 30 minute rain event, don your rain jacket and try to enjoy the show. Within a short time after the 30 minute rain event, the sun will open back up and amazing things will start to happen. Never enter a canyon hike if there is thunder nearby or any chance of rain. Flash Flooding is real as one can see from the photo, respect for flash floods is very important in the desert. If you have any question about the potential for weather ask your captain. He will have a good bead on the daily weather.