A rafting excursion can give you the rare opportunity to explore the heart of the Grand Canyon, whether you’re a whitewater veteran or a first-time adventurer. Before you book a guided trip with a local rafting company or employ for a solo license, it is important to look at a few elements, such as the period of your trip and time. You need to pack suitably to prepare yourself for the unpredictable conditions of surrounding desert and the Colorado River and ensure your experience is a comfortable and safe one.


EditPlanning a Rafting Trip

  1. Choose a time of year to go. The Grand Canyon sees all its tourism in the summer between September and May. That is when the water of the Colorado River will be most hospitable. You might also consider planning your trip to get a few of those weeks of April or October, when the river and nearby areas tend to be crowded. [1]
    • One neat thing about the water in the Grand Canyon is that it arises from a man-made reservoir, so it never gets much warmer than about. It follows if you schedule your trip later that water temperature won’t be as much of a concern. [two ]
  2. Think about how long you have to spend in your experience. The majority of guided excursions led by commercial rafting businesses can be finished in a single afternoon. Self-guided outings can take somewhat longer, as they have a tendency to be less tightly regimented. When determining a timeframe that works for you don’t forget to factor in travel time to and from the launching site. For instance, you may sign up to get a half-day, 2-day, 5-day, 7-day, 10-day, or even trip, depending on which you book .
  3. All-in-all, it requires an average of about 15 days to raft the entire length of the Grand Canyon’s waterways. The sections of the river could be traversed in days or hours.
  4. Select the type of raft you want to take. Unlike some other noteworthy whitewater destinations, you have a distinct means of conveyance to choose from when rafting the Grand Canyon. Many excursions take place. In addition you have the choice of paddling an raft or wooden dory if you would like to check your skills and get a little exercise. [4]
    • make certain to define the type of raft that you would like to reserve when you reserve your trip. Your choice of vessel may determine.
    • You can also kayak sections of the Colorado River using a special license. Kayaking can be an alternative to set rafting for solo paddlers that are innovative craving a challenge. [5]
  5. Schedule a guided trip with an area rafting company. Get in touch with one of the many commercial outfitters operating in the Grand Canyon to set up a reservation. Excursions wo need to be booked more than a day in advance. They could fill up quickly so the sooner you book your slot, the better. [6]
    • Among the biggest perks of going through a rafting company is they’ll look after all of the important planning, including traveling routes, departure times, and dinner breaks. [7]
    • Commercial outfitters supply rafts, oars, life vests, helmets, and the other essential equipment to their guests. You will need to bring yourself to these things, if you intend on making a self-guided trip.
  6. Apply for a license for self-guided trips at least one year in advance. Your first step will be to complete a Diamond Creek if you’re a veteran rafter determined to brave the river on your own. Your completed application must be submitted by you to the United States National Park Service no sooner than 1 year. Be aware that licenses are allowed on a first-come, first-served foundation, so there’s no guarantee that you’ll receive one. The Hualapai tribe that owns the property does charge a small entry fee to adventurers crossing through their territory. By calling 928-769-2210, you’ll need to make arrangements with the tribe on your own. [9]
  7. The National Park Service only authorizes two non-commercial excursions to set out from the Diamond Creek launch site every day.
  8. Be prepared to hike the Bright Angel Trail to reach your launch site. Both Upper and Lower Canyon routes Begin with a foot trek through Bright Angel Trail. The road, which climbs and crosses around in altitude, as been rated”strenuous” by the National Park Service. Owing to its problem, the hike is just recommended to adventurers that are in great condition. [10]
    • in case you don’t believe you are up to the battle, you also have the option of booking a 3-5-day Western Canyon excursion or 6-18-day Full Canyon excursion, each of which end with a helicopter or car ride out of the Canyon.
    • The craggy, sun-baked trail is well-maintained, but provides very little shade, so be sure to bring loads of water. [11]
  9. Watch the weather closely in the days leading up to a excursion. A change in the weather has the potential to severely complicate a pleasure excursion. If river conditions become too tumultuous guided outings might be cancelled. It may be safest to put your journey till you see clearer skies if the forecast doesn’t look promising. [12]
    • Tracking the weather may also provide you a clearer idea about what types of items you will have to bring with you. [13]
    • If you got a permit for a solo venture, it can not be cancelled as a result of dangerous weather. Remember that if you decide to proceed with your excursion, you’ll be doing so at your own risk.

EditPacking for Your Adventure

  1. Supply your personal equipment for non-commercial trips. As a solo adventurer, you’ll be expected to appear with your personal gear. This means main and spare oars, a raft, life vest, helmet, and cargo net or platform at the minimum. Additionally, it is a good idea to keep rope tote or a life preserver onboard your raft, plus a first aid kit for treating minor fixes containing supplies and pain relievers. [14]
    • It may be possible to lease some or all your rafting equipment on site once you arrive at the Grand Canyon.
      The weather in the Grand Canyon can differ between cold and hot in the course of a single day. Wearing layers will allow you pull or to shed items as needed as the temperature changes. The majority of your clothing ought to be created from materials like nylon, neoprene, polyester, or wool. [17]
    • Don’t forget to pack some spare dry garments for the journey back. Kicking around in soggy clothes isn’t very comfy.
  2. Select appropriate footwear for both wet and dry activities. As you’re on the lake plan on wearing either sandals or amphibious water shoes. If you’ll be hiking the Bright Angel Trail on your way in or out, make sure to pack a set of trekking boots or sneakers sturdy enough to hold up to miles of rugged terrain. All the footwear you bring should lace or strap-on firmly.
  3. Stock up on food and water to last you the length of your journey. You are going to be left to your own devices so far as sustenance goes, when going down the river on your own. Your best choice is to prioritize nutritious offerings which take up as little space as you can. MREs, nuts, and protein bars are all choices that will help keep your stomach for a few days.
    • If you would rather have a hot meal, throw a little pan or skillet with your equipment. You might have the chance to cook over an open fire at a few of the numerous campsites along the way.
    • Meals are often included in the cost of booking a multi-day trip with a commercial holiday company. [19]
  4. Bring a camera to capture the beauty of your surroundings. You will be treated to some sights. Together with desert palaces and the whitewater, the National Park grounds are home to a diversity of wildlife, included reptiles countless species of birds, and mammals such as sheep, elk, and mountain lion. You’ll undoubtedly want to list these moments to commemorate your adventure.

EditEnjoying Other Activities During Your Trip

  1. Setup camp along the river if you are embarking on a multi-day trip. Unless you are only completing a route that is short, it’ll be crucial for you to stop and camp. You are in for a treat, as the air of the Grand Canyon National Park makes for some of the best camping at the U.S. You’ll fall asleep beneath the open skies with rushing waters in your side and wake up to the magnificent sight of the sunrise glowing on the red rocks of this looming canyon walls. Fire preserved bathroom facilities are among the amenities that you’ll find there, clean drinking water, and pits.
  2. Backcountry camping is also permitted anywhere within the canyon itself, provided that you’ve obtained a backcountry permit ahead of time. Contact the National Park Service for information on How Best to apply for a permit. Odds are, you are going to be worn out after a couple of hours of extreme paddling. Find a secure place to ground your raft, when you feel as though you require a rest and have a dip. The waters will soothe your tired muscles and leave you feeling refreshed and prepared. [23]
    • Stick close to a raft and the rest of your band, and prevent entering any part of the river in which the current picks up.
    • Watch your step in shallow locations. The Colorado River’s banks are inhabited by numerous animals, including a couple of dangerous ones such as rattlesnakes, massasaugas, and scorpions. [24]
  3. Go cliff jumping at one of those local falls. You’ll pass several waterfalls marking the lake’s descent. Satisfy the thrillseeker in you by trekking up among the outcroppings and displaying the very best cannonball. Just be certain that you pick out a place that’s profound and free of obstructions before you take the plunge. In just a few feet, the depth of the river can fluctuate in some stretches. But be warned–some of these cliffs are as large as, so they’re certainly not for the faint of heart! [26]
  4. Don’t take off from anywhere you find a”No Jumping” sign posted, however tempted you may be. These areas have been deemed dangerous by park police.


  • Your regional outdoor center or sporting goods shop can be a good place to discover high quality watertight garments and accessories.
  • For more information on this Grand Canyon or Colorado River area, pick up some travel literature or read through the Site of the Grand Canyon National Park. [27]


  • Rafting may be a dangerous kind of diversion, even for experienced outdoor enthusiasts. Consistently take the proper safety precautions and keep your wits about you as you’re on the water.
  • Removing, vandalizing, or causing harm to any natural features inside a national park is a federal crime.