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Vail Rafting

Located between two of the great river systems of the West, the Colorado and the Arkansas, the Vail Valley offers some of the best whitewater rafting in the world. While there are trips to satisfy the adrenaline junkie, river rafting is not always a white-knuckle sport. With trips for any age and ability, rafting can be a pleasant day on the river with family and friends. Outfitters generally provide all the equipment you will need.

River rafting is a popular activity for summertime visitors in the Vail Valley. The plethora of whitewater options in town or in short distance from town make this a great place to have the thrilling rafting adventure of a lifetime. The Colorado, Eagle, Roaring Fork and Arkansas Rivers are only a few of the renowned rafting venues in and around the Vail Valley. Rafts hold anywhere from 4 to 12 passengers. Led by an experienced raft crew, most excursions mix participation and leisure. Participants will learn to paddle as a team, and direct the craft according to the instruction of the guide. River trips of varying levels are offered by nearly every vendor. Your trip can range from a mellow float down still waters, an exciting trip down mild whitewater, or a thrilling adventure on some of the most challenging and exciting rapids in the nation; it's all available to you as a rafter in the Vail Valley.

According to the International Scale of River Difficulty, whitewater fits one of the following ratings:
Class 1: Very small rough areas, requires no maneuvering. (Skill Level: None)
Class 2: Some rough water, maybe some rocks, might require maneuvering.(Skill Level: Basic Paddling Skill)
Class 3: Whitewater, small waves, maybe a small drop, but no considerable danger. May require significant maneuvering.(Skill Level: Experienced paddling skills)
Class 4: Whitewater, medium waves, maybe rocks, maybe a considerable drop, sharp maneuvers may be needed. (Skill Level: Whitewater Experience)
Class 5: Whitewater, large waves, possibility of large rocks and hazards, possibility of a large drop, requires precise maneuvering (Skill Level: Advanced Whitewater Experience)
Class 6: Class 6 rapids are considered to be so dangerous as to be effectively unnavigable on a reliably safe basis. Rafters can expect to encounter substantial whitewater, huge waves, huge rocks and hazards, and/or substantial drops that will impart severe impacts beyond the structural capacities and impact ratings of most all rafting equipment.
Based on this scale, be sure to discuss your expectations, the experience of your group and any health or fitness restrictions with your vendor. They will help you select a trip that best fits your parameters.

Located between two of the great river systems of the West, the Colorado and the Arkansas, the Vail Valley offers some of the best whitewater rafting in the world. While there are trips to satisfy …

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Featured Rafting

Rock Gardens Rafting

Rafting fun in Glenwood Canyon
Wild to mild whitewater adventures!
Raft with the EXPERTS celebrating 30 years of business! We focus on safety, family fun and saving you money with exciting raft trips starting at $28! … Read More

Downtown Glenwood Springs in Glenwood Springs, CO (800) 958-6737
Explore: Activities | Rafting | Glenwood Springs, CO

State Bridge

Rafting on the Colorado

Take a guided trip down the class 1-3 Colorado River. From its headwaters to our front door is an eight-hour relaxed ride through canyons and … Read More

State Bridge in Wolcott, CO (970) 653-4444
Explore: Activities | Rafting | Wolcott, CO


Timberline Tours

Guiding for over 40 years-Voted Vail's Best Outfit
World-class guides promise FUN
Providing the ultimate in outdoor adventure since 1971. These world-class guides are on the cutting edge of river guiding around the globe. Families … Read More

Explore: Activities | Rafting

Whitewater Rafting, LLC

Rafting on the Colorado & Roaring Fork Rivers
Guaranteed lowest rafting rates around!
Whitewater Rafting, LLC offers river rafting in the heart of Colorado on the Colorado River and Roaring Fork Rivers near Glenwood Springs, Aspen, … Read More

2000 Devereux Road Glenwood Springs, CO (970) 945-8477
Explore: Activities | Rafting

Colorado River Guides

"Let our family take your family down the river."

The last of the mom & pops outfits, Colorado River Guides takes great pride in offering raft trips designed to keep the whole family … Read More

127 Trough Rd Wolcott, CO (970) 653-1001
Explore: Activities | Rafting

Colorado Adventure Center

Offering some of the best Rafting in Colorado!

These Colorado rafting trips offer a wide range of adventures, from expert, advanced, intermediate, and beginner whitewater rafting trips to relaxing … Read More

1308 No Name Lane Glenwood Springs, CO (800) 808-0357
Explore: Activities | Rafting

Colorado River Center

Budget-friendly rafting on the Colorado River

Affordable family rafting with the Colorado River Center! Join us for summer fun on the Upper Colorado River. We are a small company, which allows us … Read More

4199 Trough Road Wolcott, CO (888) 888-RAFT
Explore: Activities | Rafting

Lakota Guides

Beginner, intermediate and advanced raft trips

Professionals with a passion for the outdoors. That's what you'll find at Lakota Guides, and this attitude translates into improved safety, intimate … Read More

Explore: Activities | Rafting

Blue Sky Adventures

Professionally-guided whitewater river trips

Since 1975, Blue Sky Adventures has been offering professionally guided whitewater river trips on the Colorado & Roaring Fork Rivers. Blue Sky is … Read More

319 6th Street Glenwood Springs, CO (970) 945-6605
Explore: Activities | Rafting

Colorado River Guides

Saddles & Paddles

Enjoy the magic of Colorado from your favorite perspectives – from the back of a horse and from the front of a boat! Enjoy a scenic horseback ride … Read More

127 Trough Rd Wolcott, CO (970) 653-1001
Explore: Activities | Rafting

Colorado River Guides

The Eagle River Trip.

A guide favorite. One of the last free-flowing rivers in the state, spring run-off on the Eagle River should not be missed. If thrills and chills are … Read More

127 Trough Rd Wolcott, CO (970) 653-1001
18370 Highway 131 Vail Valley, CO (970) 653-1001
Explore: Activities | Rafting

Nova Guides & Lodge at Camp Hale

For whitewater rafting, call the best!

Whitewater rafting in Vail is sure to provide excitement for the entire family, from the experienced to the novice. The scenery is breathtaking, and … Read More

Camp Hale Camp Hale (719) 486-2656
Explore: Activities | Rafting

Sage Outdoor Adventures

Lionshead, CO (970) 476-3700