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Rafting & Kayaking
Pulse-Racing Rocky Mountain Rafting And Kayaking
Northern Rocky Mountains white water rafting and kayaking opportunities are unmatched. Feel the rush of churning water propelling you through a canyon at top speed, wind and river smacking your face and filling you with exhilaration. Or drift lazily within sight of elk, moose, deer, and eagles. Test yourself on the class IV rapids of the Kootenay River. Float along Oregon’s lovely Owyhee River, which features 9,000-year-old Native American petroglyphs. Some of the nation's wildest free flowing rivers are in the Norther Rockies and have been designated National Wild and Scenic Rivers. Their outstanding scenic, recreational, geologic, fish and wildlife, historic, and cultural values are being protected for your enjoyment and for future generations. Experience the full range of Rocky Mountain rafting and kayaking adventures.
Portions of the following rivers in the Top Ten Scenic Drives region are components of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System, providing water-based recreation opportunities in settings that range from pristine and undeveloped, to remotely rural. Most of these special rivers have expert river rafting outfitter and guides who are highly qualified to take you on a trip of a lifetime!
Flathead River, Montana --- Locsha River, Montana/Idaho --- Missouri River, Montana
Middle Fork of the Clearwater River, Idaho --- Rapid River, Idaho --- Salmon River, Idaho --- Selway River, Idaho --- St. Joe River, Idaho
Snake River, Idaho/Oregon (Hell's Canyon)
- Banff National Park – No vacation to Banff would be complete without enjoying the rush of rafting in Yoho National Park and on the famous Kicking Horse River. www.pc.gc.ca/pn-np/ab/banff/index_E.asp
- Jasper National Park – Serving up some of the best whitewater rafting in the Northern Rockies. www.pc.gc.ca/pn-np/ab/jasper/index_e.asp
- Kootenay Rockies – River rafting in the Kootenay Rockies ranges from smooth, leisurely floats down meandering rivers to the white-knuckle excitement of class IV whitewater rapids. www.hellobc.com/en-CA/SightsActivitiesEvents/WaterActivities/RiverRafting/KootenayRockies.htm
- Panhandle National Forests -- The Idaho Panhandle National Forests comprise about 2.5 million acres of public lands spanning northern Idaho, extending into eastern Washington and western Montana. Visit www.fs.fed.us/ipnf/rec/activities/trails/index.html for more information.
- Clearwater, Lochsa, and Selway Rivers – Fun for everyone! Hundreds of miles of whitewater with trips from a few hours to 8 days, class 1-5 rapids and slow floats. Trips for the first timer or the expert, you will find something for everyone. Professional guides can help create a trip or venture out on your own. www.visitnorthcentralidaho.org
- Salmon River – This legendary “River of No Return” is the longest free-flowing river within one state in the Lower 48. It’s a choice pool-and-drop river with roller-coaster rapids. Professional guides can help create a trip or venture out on your own. www.visitnorthcentralidaho.org There are five sections or “forks” that can be run in rafts, kayaks, canoes, drift boats or other float craft totaling over 500 miles! Learn more at http://www.salmonriverinfo.com/ and http://www.middleforkofthesalmon.com/
- Snake River – Flows across the vast plain of southern Idaho to ultimately surge through Hells Canyon. Along the way, it offers fly fishing, rafting, and jet boating. Professional guides can help create a trip or venture out on your own. www.visitnorthcentralidaho.org
- Henrys Fork, Silver Creek, and the Teton River – Renowned spots for fishing and kayaking. Ernest Hemingway was a big fan of Silver Creek.
- Sawtooth National Recreation Area : The hundreds of rivers and thousands of rapids have earned Idaho the nickname “The Whitewater State”. Every state must have a capitol, and Stanley fits the bill perfectly. Stanley sits at the headwaters of Idaho’s Famous Salmon River of No Return and is the ‘last stop’ before embarking on the pristine 100 miles of the Middle Fork of the Salmon. These two world-renowned rivers bring thousands of rafters to Stanley each summer. Stanley’s ‘Day Stretch‘ is the perfect introduction to Idaho’s whitewater. This convenient section of the Salmon River offers 1-day rafting and kayaking trips through fun Class II/III/IV white-water along with scenic floats great for all ages and abilities. When it comes to river trips, Stanley has it all from 4 hour family float trips to 6 day adventures through the largest wilderness in the United States. http://www.fs.fed.us/r4/sawtooth/recreation
- Nez Perce National Forest — 2.2 million acres of beautiful and diverse land. From the dry, rugged canyons of the Salmon River to the moist cedar forests of the Selway drainage, the forest offers something for everyone. It sports two rivers popular with thrill-seeking floaters — the Selway and the Salmon-River of No Return. Experience these rivers on multi-day or half-day trips.fs.usda.gov/nezperce
- Clearwater National Forest -- Covers 1.8 million acres from the jagged peaks of the Bitterroot Mountains in the east to the river canyons and the rolling hills of the Palouse Prairie in the west. The Clearwater and the Lochsa rivers provide miles of tumbling white water interspersed with quiet pools, perfect for thrill seekers or slow floats. www.fs.fed.us/r1/clearwater/
- Hells Canyon -- The deepest river gorge in North America, this national showcase holds 652,488 acres of beauty and adventure, where you can let your senses run as wild as the landscape. World-class whitewater with class 3 and 4 rapids. You’ll see abundant wildlife and discover artifacts from prehistoric tribes and the rustic remains of early miners and settlers. www.fs.fed.us/hellscanyon/
- Glacier National Park – Called “North America’s Crown Jewel”. Features a host of beautiful lakes and streams filled with diverse species of fish. Go fishing, rafting, or kayaking on the Flathead River, part of one of America’s longest wild and scenic river systems. www.nps.gov/glac/
- Yellowstone National Park -- Affectionately called “Nature’s Amusement Park”. Grab your paddle and feel the rush of the river while taming the churning rapids. www.nps.gov/yell/
- Owyhee River – Often described as the Grand Canyon of Oregon. Along the way, rafters and kayakers see 9,000-year-old Native American petroglyphs, incredible rock formations, and abundant wildlife.
- Highlights the numerous waterways in Washington. http://www.wwta.org/index2.asp
- Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton National Park -- Affectionately called “Nature’s Amusement Park”. Grab your paddle and feel the rush of the river while taming the churning rapids. The Teton River is known for its world-class fly fishing.
- Buffalo Bill Reservoir and State Park – Displays local history and wildlife interpretation. Offers facilities for hiking, camping, picnicking, boating, fishing, and windsurfing.
- Salmon River – This legendary “River of No Return” is the longest free-flowing river within one state in the Lower 48. It’s a choice pool-and-drop river with roller-coaster rapids.
- Snake River – Flows across the vast plain of southern Idaho to ultimately surge through Hells Canyon. Along the way, it offers fly fishing, rafting, and jet boating.
- Wind River Canyon – Offering thrilling whitewater through the heart of geologic history and the Wind River Indian Reservation. www.wyomingtourism.org/overview/Wind-River-Canyon-Scenic-Byway/31254
Challenge Yourself With Rocky Mountain White Water Rafting
Reach extraordinary new heights of travel. Use the Top 10 Scenic Drives in the Northern Rockies to experience truly unforgettable Rocky Mountains rafting.