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Whitewater Rafting

Whitewater Rafting

Rafting is an activity people seek when coming to Colorado. We have great rivers to play on! From Estes Park, there are two rivers to choose from.

Adrenaline junkies love the thrill of whitewater on the Cache la Poudre River, while families with children may prefer rafting the more leisurely upper Colorado River with its beautiful canyon scenery and easy-to-navigate whitewater.

Rafting trips accommodate everyone, even children and non-swimmers. Go with a licensed professional outfitter who puts safety first and knows the river and the rapids. River guides are also a lot of fun.

Respect the River

Even when the water looks calm, there can be underwater currents. Beware! Recreating in moving water comes with inherent risks. Never dive into any river. It’s just not safe. Don’t jump in without checking what is below the surface. Rocks and underwater debris can cause entrapment hazards, so never stand up while in the main current of a river. Always wear a personal flotation device and shoes. Stay alert, even when swimming!

What to Take

Playing on the river means you will get wet. Wear lightweight synthetic fibers that have a wide temperature range and dry quickly. We suggest fabrics with UPF protection. They come in short-sleeve and long-sleeve shirts, pants, and hats that incorporate up to UPF 50 factor protection. Wear footwear that will stay on and is designed for the river, such as Chacos or Tevas. Tennis shoes will do, but avoid flip flops. A towel and an extra set of dry clothes are good ideas.

Wear a snug-fitting hat with a wide brim, sunglasses with a strap, waterproof SPF 30+ sunscreen, and SPF lip balm. Leave rings and other jewelry behind to avoid blisters or loss. Keep car keys, wallet, and other valuables in a zippered pocket (or better yet, don’t take them on the river at all). Don’t forget a bandana, swimsuit, and waterproof camera. 

Always have a reusable water bottle, and start with it full. Outfitters often bring coolers for refills. Avoid bringing bottled water; your empty plastic bottle is added trash in the boat or the river. 

Outfitters are required to provide safety equipment such as flotation devices, helmets, and first-aid kits. Some also supply waterproof bags for storing equipment, and watertight boxes for cameras, food, and non-alcoholic beverages. Requirements vary by trip and season.

Raft Near Estes Park

Journey west over Trail Ridge Road to Kremmling to raft the Colorado River, which has its headwaters in Rocky Mountain National Park. The Colorado River boasts beautiful canyon scenery with milder rapids and stretches of calm water. Outfitters also offer single- or double-person inflatable kayaks and stand up paddle boards.

If you’re up for more of a challenge, raft the Cache la Poudre. This free-flowing river flows down a rocky canyon dropping 7,000ft in elevation along the way with rapids from class I-V. 

This river has been designated “Colorado’s only Wild and Scenic river,” one of the greatest degrees of protection a river can receive.

Go With the Flow

To book your rafting experience, contact:


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