Green River Labyrinth Canyon Stargazing Trip

Join Holiday for a special stargazing trip in Labyrinth Canyon this summer. Few places on the planet can match the serenity of Labyrinth. This section of the Green River is calm, which makes it ideal for quiet floating or paddling an inflatable kayak or stand-up paddleboard. The scenery, however, will take your breath away. Smooth, massive canyon walls rise out of the river, colored fifteen different shades of red and orange. There are also good hiking opportunities and fascinating historical sites to visit.

This five-day trip gives your mind a chance to unwind from the rush of your life back home. Spend your mornings hiking in a side canyon or to the saddle at Bowknot Bend. While away the afternoons floating through red-rock splendor. And at night, adjust your eyes upwards into the cosmos. We’ll be floating through one of the few remaining pockets of pristine dark sky in the United States. As a result, Labyrinth Canyon is one of the best places for stargazing in Utah. Stretch out on a sandy beach, look up, and let your guides lead you on an intimate encounter with the universe.

Special for 2020! For the ultimate in desert adventures, consider combining this five-day trip with our Cataract Canyon stargazing trip. Instead of leaving the trip at Mineral Bottom, just keep floating. Learn more about this 10-day trip option here.

What makes Labyrinth so special? Check out our Insider’s Guide.

Featured Review:

“This was my first commercial raft trip. It was well-planned, and yet spontaneous! The philosophy of being in the moment seemed to be at the heart of everything we did. Our guides offered a morning “quiet float” where we just sat on the rafts and pondered our experience. This was one of my favorite moments. Each evening we were provided an educational moment about the night sky (which was incredible because of the lack of light pollution) and I learned more on those five nights than my previous 35 years of sky watching. The amount of work the guides put into our adventure was astonishing. This company truly gets what it means to have a river “experience”, not just a vacation. Oh, and the food was great!” (Forest Jordan)

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Trip Overview

  • Type:

    Naturalist

  • Location:

    Canyonlands National Park

  • Length:

    5 Days

  • Dates:

    September 10–14

  • Meet at:

    Green River, UT @ 8:00 am

  • Difficulty:

    Beginner

  • Min. Age:

    8

  • Deposit:

    300

Highlights

  • Camp under some of the highest quality dark sky in Utah
  • Easy, calm water for inflatable kayaks and stand-up paddle boards
  • Beautiful, classic red rock canyon country
  • Unique hiking opportunities in countless side canyons
  • A rare opportunity to experiece Labyrinth on a fully outfitted trip
  • A hidden treasure in the heart of the Colorado Plateau
Getting Here Before You Go Packing List

Rates & Dates

5 Day

  • Adult:
  • $980
  • Youth:
    18 and under
  • $980
  • Senior:
    65 and older
  • $980
  • Group:
    10 or more
  • $980
Book This Trip
Check Availability
2020
  • September
  • 10

Itinerary

Situated due north of Canyonlands National Park, Labyrinth Canyon guides the Green River gently south through Navajo and Wingate sandstone. Float past the confluence with the San Rafael River and deeper into designated wilderness. The take out point for Labyrinth is at Mineral Bottom, just a few miles upstream of Stillwater Canyon and the national park boundary. Travel 68 river miles from the town of Green River to Mineral Bottom through abundant, arid beauty and wide open spaces for night sky viewing.

Typical Itinerary

Day 1:

Meet at Holiday River Expeditions headquarters in Green River, Utah, at 8:00 a.m. Mountain Time. Pack your dry bags and pick up any last minute items at our store (see our packing checklist for items you can pick up in Green River). We’ll start our trip just across the bridge at the Green River State Park. The put in marks a spot that was once used as a crossing for explorers and settlers traveling on the Spanish Trail. The trip begins peacefully as the river winds through the lowlands past Crystal Geyser and Dellenbaugh Butte.

Days 2–4:

The river quietly enters Labyrinth Canyon near Ruby Ranch and the confluence with the San Rafael River. With each mile the surrounding cliffs become more dramatic. Hikes include wandering along the ephemeral stream that flows at the bottom of  Three Canyon, and climbing to the saddle of Bowknot Bend, where the river travels in an eight-mile loop only to return to within 100 yards of where it started. Check out historic inscriptions in several places. Find markings left by Norm Nevills, Buzz Holmstrom, the Kolb brothers, and the elusive French fur trapper, Denis Julien. Each night we’ll turn our gazes upward and listen to stories about the constellations and use binoculars and a laser pointer to find the Andromeda Galaxy and build a mental map in the sky.

Day 5:

Enjoy one last morning of coffee and breakfast on the river. We’ll float the last handful of miles to the take out at Mineral Bottom, with one more stop for lunch and a short hike at Hell Roaring Canyon. The drive out of the canyon from Mineral Bottom is absolutely spectacular, as we climb up a series of steep switchbacks that were literally carved out of the canyon wall! We’ll aim to be back at our Green River warehouse between 4:00 and 5:00 p.m.

Or: consider extending your trip! Instead of departing the river at Mineral Bottom, join the Stillwater and Cataract canyon stargazing trip and just keep floating.

Please keep in mind that this is a sample itinerary and may not be the exact trip you will experience. You may go on different hikes and explore slightly different parts of the canyon. This is just meant 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!

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, campsite availability, Mother Nature, and courtesy for other groups on the river. This sample itinerary illustrates a trip through Labyrinth Canyon on the Green River: one of the most spectacular canyons within the Colorado Plateau!

Reviews

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Holiday River Expeditions
Average rating:  
 4 reviews
by Bill Rawsky on Holiday River Expeditions

We were with Bonnie Carol's Moons & Tunes on June 8-12 Don't know how you could have done anything better - great trip! This was our first raft trip, so we didn't know what to expect. We were absolutely thrilled with all aspects of the trip. Our guides were knowledgeable, professional and fun, as well as being awesome cooks! It was a great experience. Thanks, Holiday!

by Pam Graham on Holiday River Expeditions

Bonnie Carol does a great job of organizing trips Guides were excellent. Susan did an excellent job leading the trip. Everyone was wonderful dealing with my 8 yr old granddaughter. She loved them. I appreciated all the women on the team for the 3 girls

by Max Krimmel on Holiday River Expeditions

I can’t promise you’ll rise before sun up just to see the first light on the canyon walls. I can’t promise you’ll hike further up a side canyon than even your guides have ever been, then slide through a rapid like cream cheese on a bagel. I can’t promise a storm so thick you can’t see the other boats, with hail so hard it hurts and enough water to bring cascades free falling hundreds of feet from the canyon rim to the canyon floor, then fill a wash, that hasn’t felt water in years, to bank full. I can’t promise the sun will break through or a rainbow downstream. I can’t promise you Ravens, Hawks, Herons, Eagles, Avocets, Otters, Beaver, Bobcats, Big Horn, Bears, and Mountain Lions or even their tracks. I can’t promise a camp of camaraderie, laughter and praise for a day well spent. I can’t promise you’ll fall asleep to a chorus of frogs and cicadas under a sky so dark you can see Andromeda, only to awake in a few hours to see the moonlight creep down the sides of the canyon just as the sunlight did so long, long ago.

No, I can’t promise you’ll experience any of this. But I can promise if you don’t go, you won’t experience it. So the main thing is -

You’ve got to go.

Max Krimmel - Moons and Tunes

by Judy Gunkler on Holiday River Expeditions

Excellent guides! Delicious meals! The food was amazing. Hard to imagine what they could accomplish outdoors with no modern conveniences.

The guides were fabulous and special in many ways like Mac helping me down the rocks, Pete playing his recorder which echoed on the canyon rocks, and all the little ways they did special things for us. Susan was a great leader and everyone worked well together.

The trip definitely exceeded my expectations!