Lodore Canyon History Trip with Andrew Gulliford

Andrew-Gulliford2The Green River through the Gates of Lodore is the perfect introduction to a backcountry river trip. Featuring four days of moderate rapids, idyllic beaches, and fascinating side hikes, Lodore offers a little bit of everything. This Lodore Canyon naturalist trip, however, adds the opportunity to learn from an expert historian and interpreter! Join Dr. Andrew Gulliford as he brings this magnificent canyon to life.

Lodore contains countless stories. For example, we’ll visit cultural sites left behind by the Fremont indigenous culture. Dr. Gulliford will also share stories about the first Euro-Americans to run this section of the Green River. Fur trappers experimented with river running as a way to access beaver habitats. And John Wesley Powell, a one-armed Civil War veteran, was the first to map the canyons of the Green River. Powell’s names dot the landscape: Disaster Falls, Echo Park, Whirlpool Canyon, and Lodore itself. Modern history also provides inspirational tales of the people who fought to preserve these canyons for the enjoyment of future generations.

There’s also plenty of time for simply relaxing as we float downstream. Holiday’s professional guides take care of all the cooking and cleaning, leaving you free to reconnect with friends or family. Enjoy four days without the bustle and hum of the modern world. Tune out the electronic din from home and tune into Dr. Gulliford’s unique vision and understanding on this Lodore Canyon naturalist trip.

Want to know more about Dr. Gulliford? Check out his interview with Holiday! 

Check out our Insider’s Guide to Lodore Canyon to learn more.

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Trip Overview

  • Type:


  • Location:

    Green River-Dinosaur National Monument

  • Length:

    4 Days

  • Dates:

    August 6-9, 2021

  • Meet at:

    Vernal, UT @ 7:00 am

  • Difficulty:


  • Min. Age:


  • Deposit:



  • Fun, technical Class II-IV rapids, including Hells Half Mile
  • Spot bald eagles, big horn sheep, and osprey
  • Fully supported wilderness trip with gourmet food and professional guides
  • Experience the canyons of Dinosaur National Monument
Getting Here Before You Go Packing List FAQs

Rates & Dates

4 Day

  • Adult:
  • $1,075
  • Youth:
    18 and under
  • $1,075
  • Senior:
    65 and older
  • $1,075
  • Group:
    10 or more
  • $1,075
Book This Trip
Check Availability
  • August 6-9


The Green River slips through the imposing Gates of Lodore into the heart of Dinosaur National Monument, meets the Yampa River at Echo Park, then slices into Whirlpool Canyon to reach the idyllic Island Park. From there, enjoy eight more miles of rapids as the river carves its way through Split Mountain before washing up at the takeout.

Sample Itinerary

Day 1:

Meet your party at our headquarters in Vernal, Utah at 7:00 a.m., Mountain Time. There we will issue your waterproof bags and you can buy any last minute items from our accessories store at this time (see our packing checklist for a list of items you can find at our store). Watch for raptors and pronghorns on the three-hour drive from Vernal to the put-in at Browns Park National Wildlife Refuge. Enter the canyon through the impressive Gates of Lodore and imagine you’re one of John Wesley Powell’s boatmen, entering the great unknown. Winnie’s and Disaster Falls are the first major rapids we’ll navigate: a great taste of what’s to come.

Day 2:

The “Gates” mark the beginning of high desert country—the Colorado Plateau—in what is deemed an ecological transition-zone: a landscape teeming with wildlife. As the canyon narrows, more rapids emerge: Harp Falls, Triplet Falls, and Hell’s Half Mile. Hike at Rippling Brook and discover a secluded waterfall.

Day 3:

At the confluence of the Green and Yampa rivers at Echo Park, the canyon widens before the river circles Steamboat Rock. Here the river enters Whirlpool Canyon. The afternoon may be spent at Jones Hole Creek, a blue-ribbon trout stream with side canyon petroglyphs and a waterfall.

Day 4:

Peaceful morning in Island and Rainbow parks before entering another massive gorge. The Green’s powerful forces cut laterally through Split Mountain’s uplifted and colorful core. Rapids abound before the take out and a 35-minute ride back to Vernal. Our expected time of arrival back at our headquarters is about 4:00 p.m, where your Lodore Canyon rafting adventure will come to an end.

As mentioned earlier, this is a sample itinerary and should not be thought of as the trip you will experience. It is intended to give an idea of what the trip will be like. It could also be exactly what you do. Keep an open mind, be flexible, go with the flow, and enjoy!

The best part of a river trip is how flexible the daily itinerary can be. Trips vary depending on group desires, assigned campsites, river flows, and our unpredictable Mother: Nature. This sample itinerary illustrates a four-day trip through Lodore Canyon.


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