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Río Cuilco, border run, Guatemala (area: Northwest; click here for the Guatemala table of rivers)

Class: III; Ave. Gradient: 11 m/km; Portages: none; Length: 11 km; Time: 1:15

Season: June to October; rafts? yes; Highlights: risk-taking; Crux move: sneaking past immigration

Water Quality: poor; Water Temperature: medium

PI: Canibal (980 m); TO: Atenango bridge in Mexico (850 m)

Description: (click here for general notes about my descriptions)

The Río Cuilco between Canibal and the Mexican border is a fairly wide river with nondescript rapids. It may be of interest to those looking to connect the Guatemalan and Mexican portions of the river, or others who like the idea of being illegal immigrants. The tricky part, though ultimately doable, is the passport stamps since there is no official border crossing near the river.

A full description is in the Mayan Whitewater Guatemala guidebook.

Descent History: I ran this in June 2007, with about 600 cfs.

Flow Notes: There is an online gauge downstream, the San Miguel gauge on the Río Independencia. The only data point I have is that 17,000 cfs on this gauge gave about 4,000 cfs at San Gaspar Ixchil. This section could be run at low or high flows.

cfs graph

Nearby Tourist Attractions: not much in this area.

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