Raft Gear & Clothing Checklist


  • LARGE WATERPROOF CAMP BAG 16" diameter x 2'  high
  • DAY BAG 8" diameter x 20" high
  • FULL COURSE MEALS lunch the first day through lunch the last day
  • DRINKS ice water, lemonade, juices, 1 soda/person/day (popular mixes of regular & diet)

Please remember to keep your gear light and compact. The less you bring, the happier you will be. Please limit gear to no more than 15-20 lbs.


  • CUP plastic mugs work well
  • LIGHT TENT backpacker style, not the bulky heavy types
  • WATER BOTTLE (not in Rental)
  • PONCHO/RAIN SUIT high quality—important for Dinosaur & Desolation trips
  • SLEEPING BAG compact and warm
  • SLEEPING PAD compact: must fit in the bag described above

You can rent most of the items listed above in our Rental Sleeping Kit.  We offer two varieties, our basic sleeping kit that includes a sleeping bag, sleeping pad, small pillow, rain gear, and cup for $40.00, or the same basic sleeping kit with a two-man tent for $65.00.  Rentals must be reserved in advance, especially on San Juan trips where we meet away from our headquarters. Water bottles & mugs are available for purchase in our stores in Green River & Vernal. Water bottles are not included in the rental kits.


  • SHIRT(S) short-sleeved, cotton, i.e. T-shirts
  • SHORTS quick drying
  • SHIRT(S) long-sleeved, quick dry, for sun protection
  • LONG PANTS quick drying
  • SHOES keep dry for camp/hiking, i.e. durable sneakers or light weight hiking boots
  • SHOES to get wet while rafting, i.e. water sport shoes or sneakers that will stay on your feet—flip flops not recommended
  • HAT for sun protection, with strap
  • SUNGLASSES with safety strap
  • SOCKS several pairs, 1 cotton, 2 synthetic, Capilene or Smartwool
  • SUNSCREEN SPF 15 or higher
  • JACKET fleece or pile with wind/rain resistant shell
  • CHAPSTICK with sun screen           
  • LONG UNDERWEAR (optional) medium weight Smartwool/synthetic type
  • HAND LOTION non-fragrant
  • BIODEGRADABLE SOAP available at outdoor specialty stores, or ivory soap
  • INSECT REPELLENT Deet concentrate in small bottles works best
  • COMB or BRUSH  
  • TAMPONS/ZIPLOCK BAGS 1 bag per day
  • MEDICATION Aspirin/Ibuprofen/Tylenol and personal prescriptions
  • TRAVEL TOWEL quick-drying  
  • FLASHLIGHT or HEADLAMP small with extra batteries & red-light setting
  • TISSUE small travel pack
  • STUFF SACK to keep wet/dry clothes separated, i.e. pillow case or plastic bag
  • SARONG (optional but highly recommended) personal sun or bug protection, privacy screen for bathing, get it wet for a personal cooling drape during hikes
  • FISHING GEAR (optional) compact and well-protected, i.e. rods in a case
  • CAMERA (at your own risk), extra memory cards (or film), batteries, & waterproof container  
  • EXTRA BEVERAGES (optional) NO GLASS PLEASE, liquor/boxed-wine/canned-beer/specialty pop/juice
    • Please note: the towns of Green River and Vernal have limited liquor and beer selections and liquor stores are not open on Sunday. You may prefer to shop for beverages ahead of time in larger towns or cities on your way to our warehouses.
  • EXTRA SNACKS (optional) for small children and people with diabetes or dietary restrictions
  • BINOCULARS (optional, at your own risk)
  • GROUND CLOTH (optional) for sleeping under the stars         
  • RIVER MAP (optional) to see where you’re going

Things not to bring on your trip: glass-bottled beverages, radios, firearms, pets, and large amounts of cash beyond what you’ll want for your guide’s gratuity. Do not bring expensive jewelry, watches, or electronics, i.e. cell phones, laptops, tablets, etc. Warning: In the event of a loss regardless of fault our insurance will not cover these expensive items. **If you do decide to bring any of these items along with you to the meeting point for your trip, the most secure location to leave them behind would be at your hotel in their safe or locked up in the trunk of your vehicle. As a last resort we have a non-secure location at our headquarters (except San Juan trips), but we cannot assume responsibility for these items.

EARLY OR LATE SEASONS SUPPLEMENTS (May, June, and Sept. on all trips.)

  • WETSUIT BOOTIES (optional) replaces water sport shoes above
  • GLOVES lightweight/synthetic
  • PILE OUTERWEAR in addition to a quality jacket, synthetic pile pants
  • LONG UNDERWEAR medium weight Smartwool/synthetic type

There is a greater chance of inclement weather on these trips, which otherwise offer many advantages to the well-prepared river traveler. Smartwool, fleece,  pile, Capeline, etc. are a few examples of trade names for a class of natural and synthetic materials that retain their ability to insulate when wet (please note, cotton does not).  Your comfort on the trip starts with finding the right type of synthetic under and outerwear and quality rain gear. We recommend Backcountry.com for your additional river trip needs. They offer a wide variety of gear to help you dress for success while on your river trip. A prepared traveler is a happy traveler.   

Some items can be purchased from our store. HOLIDAY RIVER STORE or at BACKCOUNTRY.COM

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