Protect Our Winters Fundraiser Trip – Westwater Canyon

Join us for a 3-day Protect Our Winters (POW) fundraiser trip through Westwater Canyon, featuring science alliance member Dr. Andrew Schwartz, who is the lead scientist and station manager at the University of California, Berkeley Central Sierra Snow Laboratory. Westwater Canyon rafting trips are the best way to get out on the river, without being in the backcountry for too long, making it the perfect option for all the weekend warriors, or those looking to dip their toes into a multi-day river trip. Spend time discovering the majesty of the Colorado River and learn about snowfall and physical processes in the snowpack, and how climate change impacts these processes. This is your trip; Paddle an inflatable kayak or a stand-up paddle board beneath smooth pink and orange sandstone walls. Run exciting rapids through a canyon made of polished black stone (over a billion years old!). Explore side canyons and climb to the rim for a bird’s eye view. Or, just kick back and relax on a raft, let the world float by, and spend evenings around the camp circle with like-minded peers also passionate about protecting our winters, and climate change at large.


Learn More About POW and Dr. Andrew Schwartz

Protect Our Winters (POW)POW blue logo helps passionate outdoor people protect the places and lifestyles they love from climate change. Founded in 2007 by professional snowboarder Jeremy Jones, POW is a community of athletes, scientists, artists, and business leaders advancing non-partisan policies that protect our world today and for future generations.

A particular focus of Dr. Schwartz’s research is on the impacts of wildfire and rain-on-snow events on snowpack energy balance and water storage. His current work examines climatological trends in temperature and precipitation characteristics in the central Sierra Nevada Mountains. Dr. Schwartz serves as Vice-Chair of the American Meteorological Society’s Measurements Committee and as a member of the Executive Committee for the Western Snow Conference. He was also recently appointed to the board of the California Department of Water Resources’ Data Acquisition Round Table.

Andrew is a proponent and active participant in science communication and believes that sharing research and science with the broader community is beneficial to all those involved and results in better science-informed policy. He also supports and takes an active role in diversity, equity, and inclusion in science, working to ensure that all voices are heard and all viewpoints are considered.

Andrew grew up in Denver, Colorado fascinated by severe weather and the large snowstorms that came from upslope wind events. He became particularly interested in snow and winter weather while snowboarding in the Colorado Rockies and interested in the impacts of climate change on snow during his Ph.D. research in Australia’s Snowy Mountains.

A portion of the proceeds from this trip will be donated to Protect Our Winters, and all participants will receive a team POW membership. This is a year-long membership benefit and is a great way to further engage with POW’s work (and includes some perks, like a limited edition t-shirt, discounts on partner brands, exclusive event invites, and more!).


What’s it like to raft Westwater? See our Insider’s Guide to Rafting the Colorado River through Westwater Canyon.

Time to explore in Green River? Here’s our local highlights: Green River, Utah: Things to Do and Places to Explore


Holiday believes in the importance of acknowledging the land rights of the regions we recreate on: in a gesture of respect and appreciation for the Indigenous people who have lived on and cared for the rivers and canyons where we play, Holiday  acknowledges that Westwater Canyon is the traditional homeland of the Núu-agha-tʉvʉ-pʉ̱ (Ute) people. Read more about our land acknowledgments here.
Book This Trip

Trip Overview

  • Type:


  • Location:

    Colorado River - Westwater Canyon

  • Length:

    3 Days

  • Dates:

    August 22-24, 2023

  • Meet at:

    Green River, Utah @ 8:00 am

  • Difficulty:


  • Min. Age:


  • Deposit:



  • Learn about snow science from a field-leading scientist
  • Support POW's mission to minimize climate change impacts and protect our world
  • Exciting Class III & IV whitewater rapids through the narrowest section of the Colorado
  • Play on stand-up paddleboards & inflatable kayaks in the calm water
  • Stunning wilderness canyon with billion-year-old black rocks
Getting Here Before You Go Packing List FAQs

Rates & Dates

3 Day

  • Adult:
  • $885
  • Youth:
    18 and under
  • $885
  • Senior:
    65 and older
  • $885
  • Group:
    10 or more
  • $885
Book This Trip
Check Availability
  • August
  • 22-24

*Rates do not include the $10 land use fee.


Just west of the Colorado National Monument, the Colorado River enters Utah. Our trip begins in Loma, Colorado and floats through the warm orange and pink sandstones of Ruby Canyon before entering the black schist of Westwater itself. Three days later, we arrive at the boat ramp in Cisco, Utah, a ghost-town-turned-artist-colony. Return to the Green River, Utah warehouse between 4:00 and 5:00pm.

Sample Itinerary


Day 1:

Meet at our headquarters in Green River, Utah at 8:00 a.m., Mountain Time. Learn how to pack your Holiday-issued dry bags and purchase any last minute items from our warehouse store (see our packing checklist for a list of items we stock). Within the hour, we’ll load up into our vans for the two hour ride east to the put-in at Loma, Colorado. This is Ruby Canyon – stunning canyon walls welcome you and the water is calm with only a few small rapids – perfect for playing around with inflatable kayaks or stand-up paddle boards. A side hike up Rattlesnake Canyon reveals a variety of desert plants and wildlife. Camp at Black Rocks, where 1.7 billion-year-old black schist provides a stunning background setting. Consider hiking up to the rim, or playing in the water from camp.

Day 2:

Enjoy a peaceful morning of floating before reaching the Westwater Ranger Station. Perhaps stop for a mid morning side hike to see some petroglyphs. After we sign up for our campsite for night 2 at the ranger station, we continue downstream where the river enters the narrow, black rock canyon of Westwater Canyon. The rapids this afternoon are bigger and splashier – perfect for cooling off while trying your hand in the inflatable kayaks! We camp just upstream of the biggest rapids, deep within Westwater canyon, and savor a steak dinner around the camp circle. Conversation carries us into the evening as stars blanket us overhead. Who needs white noise when you can hear the whitewater lulling you to sleep?

Day 3:

Gear up for rapids! One right after another: Big Hummer, Funnel Falls, Surprise, and the narrowest point of the Colorado River, Skull Rapid. Once we’ve made it through the rapids, sit back and look for bald eagles, great blue herons, and even an occasional big horn sheep before stopping for one last lunch on the river. We aim to be at the Cisco boat ramp by 2:00. After loading boats and gear, we’ll make the 45-minute drive back to Green River.

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

Westwater Canyon Rapids Smiles Splash

One of the advantages of a river trip is the flexibility of the daily itinerary. It can vary widely from one trip to the next based on group desires, assigned campsites, weather, and other unpredictable elements. Embrace the adventure and go with the flow!



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Holiday River Expeditions
Average rating:  
 3 reviews
 by Naina Phadnis

Overall we had a blast. We loved our guides, the food was fantastic and the rafting experience was out of this world. All the guides were kind and enthusiastic and always did their best to meet our needs. We felt safe and well taken care of and will surely come back for another trip.

 by Vince and Sally

I had an amazing experience with Holiday and will return. Guides took care of us on everything. The right mix of relaxation and trust we were in the hands of experts in case of emergency

 by Loraine DeBonis

The guides were fun, knowledgeable, and friendly. Nick was a fantastic leader. As five working women on the trip, we were not used to being pampered. It was such a treat. I also was nervous about the trip because I'd never done anything like it before, and Dave, especially, was a calming presence.

This trip came together because some friends and I were so ready to travel together. For me, being separated by geography and busy schedules, it marked the first time together for more than an hour in at least 7 years. I'm usually more excited about visiting bustling metropolitan areas (not much of a camper), but this rafting trip, reconnecting with my girls, not having to worry about any responsibilities or food prep, seeing the awe-inspiring beauty of nature, and unplugging from technology was so good for my mind, body, and soul. I can't tell you enough how much I loved this experience. I 1,000% recommend it! Nick, Ezra, Dave & Ben, you will always have a place in my heart. The food and everything about this trip were beyond my expectations. Thank you! If you're on the fence about this trip, just do it! You won't regret it.