If you would like to explore the Grand
Canyon as John Wesley Powell did in 1869, you can
take a whitewater rafting trip. Rubber rafts take you
down this 277-mile ride. At night, you can either sleep
under the stars, or in a tent.
The Grand Canyon has enticed white water rafting enthusiasts from all over the world to experience the thrill of the waters of the Colorado River. Many of these enthusiasts consider Grand Canyon rafting to be the ultimate river trip. In fact, Arizona rafting will allow you to see areas of the Grand Canyon that are only accessible by water! On your Grand Canyon rafting trip, you will discover hidden waterfalls, ancient Native American ruins, hanging gardens and side canyons.
While Arizona rafting is a vigorous activity, in some ways, it is easier than doing the entire trip by foot. On a raft, you do not carry the weight of your food and supplies. Also, rafting in the Grand Canyon does not preclude hiking. You can dock the raft and explore by foot. Rafting in the Grand Canyon does not have to be overly challenging. You can choose a smooth water rafting trip. Smooth water rafting trips do not go through any rapids. They are usually half day, which are very suitable for families. In contrast, white water rafting in the Grand Canyon will require a considerable amount of skill, as you can expect to encounter some rapids. Many white water rafting trips are multi-day trips. No matter which type of trip you choose, rafting in Arizona will provide cool relief form the states hot and dry summers.
For your Grand Canyon rafting trip, most companies give you a choice of two types of rafts. Motorized rafts are 35 feet long. They are specifically designed for the Colorado River. Their self-bailing design allows the water to get out of the boat by itself. These rafts come equipped with outboard engines with quiet running four-stroke technology. The rafts also have a spare motor. They hold 15 people and two guides.
Oar boats require a bit of human muscle. They are 18 feet long, and can hold four or five guests and one guide. Most rafting companies keep a few spare oars on the raft.
Aside from the Colorado River and the Grand Canyon, there are a number of other places to go rafting in Arizona. The Salt River is located along the edge of the Colorado Plateau. Since it passes through mountain and Sonoran Desert ecosystems, as you raft through its waters, you can see an interesting variety of plant, animal and bird life. In early spring, the Salt River often has the best white water rafting in the American West.
Verde Canyon is another great place to go rafting in Arizona. Its class III and gentle class II rapids, along with its intriguing desert canyon location, make it an excellent choice for a family rafting vacation. As you paddle through the multi-colored canyon, be on the lookout for javelina, black bears, golden eagles, great blue herons, otters, and deer.