Top Places to Go White Water Rafting in Colorado

White Water Rafting in Colorado

The Rocky Mountains have a reputation for creating some impressive whitewater rivers, and Colorado boasts of having some of the top places to raft. From the popular Arkansas Rivers to the Yampa River, there are plenty of water bodies that allow full-day white water rafting. The months from June to September are considered the best seasons for rafting. The article highlights some of the most popular and widely used rivers for white water rafting in Colorado.

Arkansas River

White Water Rafting in Colorado


The gigantic Arkansas River is the most popular and widely rafted water body in the state. While exploring, one will come across several impressive places, the most popular being the Royal Gorge. The trip leads the rafters through a narrow canyon and passes under a spell-bounding suspension bridge.

 While taking the long trip in the Rockies, one can also experience other stunning rafting sections, like Brown Canyon, Bighorn Sheep Canyon, etc. The Arkansas River allows one to enjoy several epic rafting sections.

Animas River

White Water Rafting in Colorado


Animas River is located at Durango, a town known mostly for its narrow gauge railroad. One of the highlighting aspects of Animas River is that it offers a tide of recreation and energy throughout the year. Furthermore, one can also reap the enjoyment of half-day or full day white water rafting along with lazy floats.

Lower Animas River

The Lower Animas River streams through downtown Durango town, offering family-friendly floats. The thrill is further ensured by passing via the man-made rapids of the whitewater park of the town.

Upper Animas River

It has a reputation as the longest, and continuous stretch of commercial-run rapids of more than 30 miles in the USA. There is a continuous inflow of thrills that can be enjoyed in the upper Animas River.

Colorado River

White Water Rafting in Colorado


One can find a wide range of impressive sections in the Colorado River to raft. Whether one wants to enjoy a lazy family-friendly trip down the Glenwood Canyon, or an adrenaline-rush whitewater rafting in Gore Canyon, the Colorado River provides options for everyone.

Gore Canyon

Gore Canyon is regarded as one of the fiercest and the raging commercially rafted whitewater in the Colorado region. Henceforth, it is not recommended for those looking for typically peaceful floats. It is an advanced whitewater section that is reserved only for experienced rafters and enthusiasts with resourceful guides. The wide range of Class IV and V rapids are high and brutal, making it apt only for experienced rafters.

Glenwood Canyon

Downstream, Glenwood Canyon is popular among families looking for half-day and full day white water rafting trips in peace. The guide accompanying will take the group of rafters to archaic hot springs on the banks of the Colorado River. It is also suitable for overnight rafting trips, and is a popular consideration among rafters.

Yampa River

White Water Rafting in Colorado


Situated in the Northwest of Colorado, the Yampa River is regarded as one of the most popular rivers for rafting in Colorado state. Traveling by rafts downwards the river is unwinding, and renders a tranquil hideaway, ideal for family trips, and lazy floats. One can experience so many beautiful and engaging sightseeing locations through Yampa Canyon.

Apart from rendering relaxing, peaceful, and lazy floats, one can also encounter Class III and Class IV rapids in the Yampa River, usually from May to July. Full-day whitewater rafting trips are the most popular and widely used ones, but multi-day rafting trips are also practiced in Yampa River by experienced rafters.

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Piedra River

White Water Rafting in Colorado


Piedra River is considered ideal for beginners and amateurs undertaking rafting trips. When one is considering the Piedra River for rafting, he/she can get access to Upper and Lower Piedra River trips.

Upper Piedra River

The upper Piedra River is ideal for rafters above the age of 12 years, under the strict guidance of an experienced, and professional rafting guide or expert. The best part about the upper Piedra River trip is that there are several Class II, Class III, and Class IV rapids. When one wants to experience the best of the adventure of Colorado, combined with a full-day, and overnight rafting trip, reaching the lower Piedra River the next day seems thrilling.

Lower Piedra River

This section of the river is suitable for 16 years old and above, as the rapids are more extreme, exceeding Class IV levels. It is coupled with adventure-filled multiple thousand-foot and more deep box canyons, giving monstrous and huge drops.


Rafting enthusiasts from across the US, and other parts of the world visit Colorado and experience full day white water rafting. The Rocky Mountain rivers can render a risk-free and spine-tingling experience for everyone.