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“The Stars at night are big and bright, deep in the heart of Texas” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Far Flung Outdoor Center

Far Flung Outdoor Center
Ranked #1 of 13 things to do in Terlingua
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Since 1974, Far Flung Outdoor Center has been helping folks discover the wonders of Big Bend National Park with quality raft trips, Jeep tours, and ATV adventures.We specialize in high quality, interpretive tours of the Big Bend, with an emphasis on great fun mingled with just the right amount of learning.We offer a wide variety of guided rafting trips on the Rio Grande River, from short, half-day family floats to 3- and 4-night overnight trips. You can also experience special themed trips such as gourmet food adventures, trips with noted Texas folk musicians, and New Year's Eve star gazing parties.Want to explore Big Bend by land? Our guided Jeep and ATV tours are a perfect way to enjoy Big Bend's scenic beauty while learning about its natural and cultural wonders.Should you need lodging for your vacation, our Big Bend Casitas offer roomy comfort, nice amenities, and a location just minutes from Big Bend National Park.We're passionate about Big Bend and enjoy showing off her many beautiful places. We can help you make the most of a future trip to Big Bend!!
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children, Wheelchair access, Activities for young children
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
17 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“The Stars at night are big and bright, deep in the heart of Texas”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 20, 2013

5/5 for our amazing guide, Tony F. ( who has so many skill sets , I would need lots of pages to elaborate on) , for the great equipment, the incredible scenery, for the dark dark night sky, and as herzog00 mentioned- unbelievable food.
We went in January and it was cold at night, but we have done other backpacking trips so did bring a sleeping bag liner , additional clothes , were familiar with the tent, blessed to be in a raft and have sunny weather during the day.
Request Tony as your guide. He knew all about the geology, biology, and water politics of the area. He anticipated trouble spots on the river and handled them like the expert he is. When the truck got stuck in the mud unloading the gear, he infused the situation with humor.
We had long rides to the put in and take out, but had a great driver, John,who added lots of local color and commentary to the trip. The scenery is like a Hollywood movie.
Be aware that the choice of location on the river and the type of boat is determined by the water level and FFOC .
Go with it
They know what they're doing.

Visited January 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Patricia R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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262 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
New York
Level Contributor
78 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
“excellent guides and company, bring enough warm clothes!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 6, 2013

Overall score :4.5/5 (but they don't have half stars)

We did an overnight river trip with far flung between Christmas and New Years. An unusual cold front hit the area as we arrived pulling the temperatures down to 20-30 degrees at night and 60-70 during the day.

Our trip had 11 people and 3 river guides plus one driver who did not come on the river. The trip was $325 per person to kayak on The Rio Grande .

The food:
This was the most surprising for me. I always get hungry so I packed some tuna pouches, granola, and nuts. I only needed some of it during the initial drive. The rest of the time there was more food than I could eat.

Dinner
Before dinner there was pepper jack cheese and a jalapeño cream cheese with crackers (appetizer). Dinner was filet mignon, green beans, mash potatoes, salad. All of it was freshly cooked on equipment they brought out with them and cooked at the camp site. If you tell them ahead if time, they can bring fish (tilapia) or something else if you are a vegetarian for example. Several bottles of Red and white (mondavi) wine were available. Dessert (yes dessert) was chocolate brownies with chocolate chunks (not made on the spot but I think they may have been home made too. It didn't taste like a supermarket brownie)

Lunch:
For lunch on the first day we had whole wheat bread, cold cuts (ham and turkey), lettuce, tomato, onions, delicious salsa (tasted home made), two kinds of pickles, sliced apples, oranges. Peanut butter and jelly was also available - I had a cold cut sandwich followed by a pb sandwich. There were also tostido chips which went well with the salsa.

Breakfast:
A tasty breakfast was waiting when I awoke. Scrambled eggs, tortilla, sausage patties, chorizo, refried beans, all freshly made for us. Hot chocolate, tea, coffee, hot cider (all was instant I believe) and water were available.

Lunch (day 2)
On the second day, we had a lunch with sliced up chicken, tomatoes, onions, salsa, green wraps. Carrots, hummus, chips, sliced apples and oranges. Fruit punch and lemonade mix were always available at each stop.

The gear:
We rented a sleeping bag and mat. The may was very stick- much thicker than the typical mat that I've see (maybe 1.5 inches thick). They provided tents and tarps. Everyone sets up their own tent. Due to falling into the freezing water, I was pretty cold all next except when I was around the fire. I realized when I was packing the tent that there are vents on the top that we left open, which I think would have made it a bit warmer inside. I had trouble getting warm in the tent and therefore had trouble sleeping.

The guides:
They are excellent and the head guide has lots of experience and training (first aid, river guiding etc). They checked on us often after we tipped out boat and were prepared with lots of extra clothes. They prepared and cooked all the food, and tied down most of packs in the boat. In one case the walked the boats through a difficult pass because it wasn't worth the risk and there wasn't much sun in the morning.

The trip: We had to go to Temple Canyon because the water was too low in Santa Elena which is much closer. The van ride to the put in point was about 1.5 hours. On the way out it was 2.5 hours, about an hour of it on a really bumpy road in Big Bend National Park.

Improvements/suggestions:
I deducted half a star (to 4.5/5) because:
1) the office should have been a little more proactive with the cold weather and given us a couple suggestions on how better to prepare. They could offer (for sale or rent) big rubber rain boots like the guides wore. There are a couple times when you need to put your feet in the water and it was really cold when we went. They only offer regular water shoes but you feet will be completely wet. Unless they dry completely by the morning (the sun was not directly over the camp when we got there and the fire didn't dry them) you will have wet cold shoes to put your feet in the next day. Of course its unlikely to be this cold- they said this was one of the coldest.

2) given the really cold weather, the office could have suggested to bring a blanket or perhaps offered a warmer sleeping bag.

3) I'm no expert in putting a tent together. It would have been helpful if the guides double checked it a little closer. It looked right but I didn't notice the two vents on each side of the wind shield (it goes over the tent). I think it would have been warmer in the tent had this been clothes. Anyway, they did offer clothes several times and give me warm sweats and sweater which was fantastic.

Overall this is a great crew and I would go out with them again. There's a lot of equipment to haul around and lots of things they prepare for you.

Check the weather, but since you have to book this ahead of time and you can't really cancel, you will have to make sure you have enough things to keep warm. And bring some small biking type of gloves as ski gloves may be uncomfortable or overkill for rowing.

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank herzog00
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bossier City, Louisiana
Level Contributor
44 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
“New Year's trip 2012”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 3, 2013

We were a group of 9 guests, a musician, and 2 guides for an overnight trip through Temple canyon 12/31/12 and 1/1/13. The guides were confident and capable and made us feel like we could handle whatever came our way. Very nice trip. We were well cared-for. Reservations were seemless; organization and transportation was right. The food is hearty and good. I appreciate the extras that Patrick brought along.

The water levels were low, the water was smooth and tame. A relaxing float.

A great way to spend a New Year's Eve and New Year's Day.

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
Thank Teresa W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin, Texas
Level Contributor
41 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Jeep Tour”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 25, 2012

Chris our Jeep Guide was wonderful and professional.Chris's back ground was priceless and teaching out group about the Big Bend area.

Visited November 2012
Helpful?
Thank kdear
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hutsonville, IL
Level Contributor
147 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
“Nice Professional Float Trip”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 24, 2012 via mobile

We went on a one-day canoe trip. They had very good equipment, professional staff, very well organized and managed. I guess my only negatives were it seemed a little pricey compared to other raft and canoe trips I have done, and I felt like they rushed through it a little, I would have liked a more leisurely trip that lasted longer. Overall though we had a very good time and I would do it again.

Helpful?
Thank Vicki M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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