Arizona River Rafting Trips
Whitewater rafting in Arizona
The name “Grand Canyon” brings to mind incredible beauty, and breathtaking whitewater. This granddaddy of whitewater rafting in Arizona boasts 150 rapids, including some of the wildest whitewater in North America. The two largest, Lava Falls and Crystal Rapid, are awesome to behold, exhilarating to run. Sparkling clear springs gush from cracks in the cliffs, forming lush oases of ferns, pools and wild flowers. Each of the Earth’s climatic zones is represented in Grand Canyon from alpine forests on the rim to Sonoran deserts in the lower elevations.
The entire canyon requires 13-15 days, and the Grand Canyon reserves its greatest reward for those who make this time commitment. Five or six, and eight or nine day split trip options offer either the upper or lower section of the canyon. The lower and upper canyon trips involve a 9-mile hike into or out of the canyon from the South Rim to the Colorado River and are only recommended for those in good physical condition.
Reservations should be made well in advance as demand for this world-class adventure is high. Grand Canyon trips are run by outside affiliates who are authorized Grand Canyon concessionaires.
Looking for a trip that is lighter on your pocket book and busy schedule? Check out any of the alternative “Grand” canyon trips! They are sister rivers, sitting just above the Grand Canyon along the Colorado River drainage in the Colorado Plateau. From deep canyons, pre-historic rock layers, big whitewater and numerous cultural sites and hikes along the way, these alternative canyons have it all for a fraction of the cost and time.
The Upper Grand Canyon is an amazing place with legendary landmarks such as Vasey’s Paradise, The Little Colorado, and Redwall Cavern to name a few. While the most infamous whitewater is found in the lower canyon, the Upper still holds some major rapids such as Nevill’s and Hance. Starting at Lees Ferry the Canyon opens to us as we begin the float into its vast interior. It starts as a narrow, sheer-sided chasm, winding through the uplifted Kaibab Plateau. The first 61 miles of Marble Canyon is the most photographed, perhaps the most scenic portion of the Grand Canyon. The rim moves away from view as the Canyon broadens to its full expanse of 13 miles. Then we enter the foreboding inner gorge with its exquisite polished granite. This gem of the Colorado is indeed one of the most scenic places on earth.
This Lower section of the Grand Canyon is characterized by its granite gorges, punctuated by massive whitewater adventure. All the legendary rapids reside in this lower portion of the canyon; those that hang off the tips of river-rafters tongues, the rapids of folklore… Hermit, Crystal, Lava Falls… are heard echoing from the beginning to the end of this river trip. Hold on to your hats because not only will this be a wild, (yet safe) ride but those shady hats will come in hand for the many epic side-canyon hikes peppered throughout the lower gorge. This trip has every ingredient to make a memorable trip, all its missing is you!
The Grand Canyon reserves its greatest rewards for those who take the time to experience the full river trip. From the spectacular hikes, hidden side-canyons, and grandiose vistas of the upper- canyon to the roaring lion of muddy white-water echoing off the ancient schist walls of the lower-canyon, the Grand Canyon has it all. Some days will be spent mostly on the boats as we run the river’s booming rapids. Other days we will take extended side hikes or perhaps short excursions to ancient Native American ruins, hidden canyons or gushing springs. Each day will be full and varied, with your nights spent on sandy beaches beneath a canopy of stars bracketed by towering canyon walls. We typically offer 13-14 day river trips and on special occasions 15 day extended trips. By the end of this Colorado River trip you will feel like a new person, and you will indeed be forever changed.