Grand Canyon Whitewater Rafting
There may be no bigger thrill out there than whitewater rafting, and there is perhaps no better place in America to experience whitewater rafting than at the Grand Canyon in Arizona. Grand Canyon whitewater rafting rewards visitors with more than just some of the best rapids they’ll find anywhere. Visitors also get a Grand Canyon history lesson along the way, the chance to visit Indian ruins, amazing views from stunning overlook vistas, and the opportunity to experience some Grand Canyon hiking at its best. Choose a trip that lasts more than one day and you’ll also have the chance to mix in some memorable Grand Canyon camping along the way. Whether you are looking for 1 day Grand Canyon white water rafting tours, or trips that can last 25 days, you’ll find them up for grabs at the Grand Canyon. Just remember to book your Grand Canyon whitewater rafting trip as early in advance as possible, especially during the busy summer season. While plenty of outfitters and tour groups offer a mix of Grand Canyon white water rafting tours, only so many daily trips are allowed on the river, and year by year these trips fill up fast.
One of the best features to Grand Canyon whitewater rafting is the quality of guides you will come across. Nearly every review of past trips mentions just how special the Grand Canyon guides turned out to be. Dedicated to safety first, the level of service they provide during your adventure is second to none. Not only are they there to help you interpret what you will see, including the intricacies of the soaring canyon walls, the native wildlife and the area’s ancient history, but they also serve as gourmet cooks and wonderful story tellers. Whether you choose a Grand Canyon whitewater rafting trip that features a motorized boat, or decide to go with the options where manpower is your means of navigation, your guides will be there every step of the way to make sure you have the experience of a lifetime. You can arrange Grand Canyon white water rafting tours that just include the rafting, or you can schedule in a rafting trip in tandem with other Grand Canyon tours, such as mule rides, a Grand Canyon train ride or helicopter tours. Every Grand Canyon tour rewards visitors with immaculate views and a deeper appreciation of nature, but perhaps no other tour can rival the feeling of drifting along the mighty Colorado River with the Grand Canyon rising all around you. It’s truly a unique perspective.
The ins and outs of what you’ll need to do to secure a Grand Canyon whitewater rafting trip are covered in the Grand Canyon Rafting main article, and you’ll find additional information on smoothwater rafting trips in the Grand Canyon River Rafting article. Generally, the options are twofold. You can either book a trip with a commercial operation, which typically can last anywhere from 1 day up to 7 days, or you can apply for a Noncommercial River Permit to arrange self-guided tours that can last as long as 25 days. As for the year 2008, all the Noncommercial River Permits are spoken for, but you can get your name in the National Park System’s weighted lottery for 2009, if going it without a company is your goal. While seasoned whitewater veterans might prefer the solo options, most visitors are better off scheduling Grand Canyon white water rafting tours with the numerous commercial enterprises. That way, everything is taken care of ahead of time, from the various fees to the establishment of safety guidelines. The Colorado River is just one of three in the world that uses a more advanced rating system to classify it rapids, and they are certain stretches of the river’s course through the Grand Canyon that are daunting, to say the least. While most notable whitewater rivers use a scale of 1 to 6 to classify their rapids, the Grand Canyon uses a scale of 1 to 10, meaning you are absolutely in for a thrill of a lifetime. Unless you really know what you are doing, going with a commercial company whose guides know the river is simply your best bet.
While Grand Canyon white water rafting tours can be booked during your Arizona vacation from such destinations as Sedona, Phoenix and Flagstaff, you’ll also find that some vacation packages for Las Vegas and other southwestern United States destinations also include the chance to run the formidable Colorado River at the Grand Canyon. As stated before, the bulk of the Grand Canyon white water rafting tours fill up quickly in the summer, and as such, some companies recommend that you consider booking your trip between May and early June, or in September, when availability is a bit more commonplace. If you’ve showed up to the Grand Canyon without any previous reservations, you can inquire with the various Grand Canyon hotels about the various rafting tours that you may still be able to secure. Grand Canyon white water rafting tours aren’t necessarily cheap, with 1-day trips starting at around $300, and 3-day trips averaging out at around $1,000, but they are worth every penny. Booking early or late in the season can result in some significant savings, and you may look for vacation packages online that offer deals on your Grand Canyon whitewater rafting tour. One thing is sure with a Grand Canyon whitewater rafting trip, and that is the fact that you will come away from it forever changed. This is especially true if you select a tour that includes camping overnight in the eerily beautiful Grand Canyon.
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