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Whitewater Rafting

Whitewater RaftingWhitewater Rafting is an exciting way to travel through some the earths most beautiful places. Rafting through the mists of deep canyons in the far flung corners of the earth where waterfalls pour off canyon walls is a once in a lifetime experience for many travelers. But you can spend many long weekends close to home or on family vacations in the America’s, enjoying the thrills and companionship that can only be found on a river trip. Kenneth Grahame said it best in his classic Wind in Willows: “Believe me, my young friend, there is NOTHING--absolute nothing--half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.”

America Outdoors’ members provide whitewater rafting trips across the United States and around the world for all levels of adventure travel. From world-renowned whitewater rivers that flow through four climate zones to the many one-day whitewater rafting trips that are “off the beaten path”, America Outdoors members provide rafting on most whitewater rivers in the U.S, Canada and in many foreign countries. Depending on your level of experience, whitewater rafting outfitters help families, groups and individuals choose which rafting option is best suited for them.

The length of a whitewater rafting trip varies; some trips may only last a few hours, while some may take up to two weeks, with camping and meals provided. There are even trips with rustic riverside wilderness lodges to sleep in at night with sumptuous meals and hot showers at night. You’ll be surprised at the quality of the cuisine found on multi-day trips, where the guides pride themselves in the skills of dutch oven cooking and grilled cuisine from casseroles, to salmon and hearty steaks.

Many beginners wonder if whitewater rafting is safe. There are risks involved in any outdoor recreation activity, not to mention driving. The safety of whitewater rafting depends on several factors, including the health of the individual and how well they can tolerate a swim and assist in their retrieval if they fall out of the raft. The difficulty of the river, its natural features, and the experience of the guide are other factors. Many whitewater rafting rivers have a few bouncy rapids that are great family adventures, while other rivers offer challenge and thrill.

Rivers are rated from Class I to Class VI. Outfitters generally do not run Class VI rivers. Family trips and beginners are most often found on Class I, II, III and an occasional Class IV river. You should make the decision based on your own comfort level and how you feel on your own in and around water.

More adventuresome whitewater rafting enthusiasts may choose Class IV and Class V rivers. River conditions change with the water level and changes in weather. Your outfitter will help you understand what to wear for your whitewater rafting experience.

On some rivers with mild whitewater, you may be able to rent a raft and take the trip on your own, but beware of engaging in higher levels of whitewater rafting without a professional guide. Always, always wear a life jacket when involved in whitewater rafting, kayaking or canoeing.


     
 
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