White water rafting is an exhilarating outdoor activity that offers a unique combination of adventure and challenge. In addition to the physical and mental challenges, white water rafting can also be an enjoyable social activity that leads to great memories. But do you know where is the best place to whitewater raft in Colorado?
Some people find the rush of adrenaline that comes from tackling challenging rapids to be thrilling. Others enjoy being in nature and having the opportunity to experience the beauty of the outdoors from a different perspective.
Whatever your reason for wanting to ride the waves, you’re going to take a deep look into your soul while on the water.
White water rafting requires participants to work together as a team under the direction of their guide to navigate the rapids and stay safe on the water. It creates a sense of camaraderie and teamwork that adds to the enjoyment of the experience.
Best Place to White Water Raft in Colorado
If you’re looking for the best places to white water raft in Colorado, Clear Creek in Idaho Springs should be at the top of your list.
With a wide range of rapids to suit different skill levels, Clear Creek offers the best white water rafting in Colorado for beginners and experts alike.
Rafting on Clear Creek can be an exciting and challenging experience. The water flows quickly, and there are numerous rapids to navigate. Depending on the section of the river you’re rafting, the rapids can range from Class II (relatively mild and suitable for beginners) to Class V (extremely difficult and suitable for experienced rafters only).
As you raft down the river, you will have the opportunity to take in the stunning views of the surrounding mountains and forests. Depending on the section of the river you are rafting, you may also pass by historical sites and landmarks, such as old mines and mills. The combination of mild to challenging rapids and beautiful natural surroundings makes for a memorable and enjoyable outdoor adventure.
Based in Idaho Springs, Colorado Adventure Center is the perfect base camp for all your mountain adventures. Just 20 miles west of Denver, it’s also conveniently close to numerous other Colorado mountain resorts.
White Water Rafting Trip Options
Colorado Adventure Center offers a wide variety of white water rafting trip options for adventure lovers of all ages and skill levels, including:
- Beginner trips for those new to the water
- Intermediate for those who have tried it, but are exceptionally skilled
- Advanced trips for skilled rafters who want to really show what they’re made of
The water is typically cold and clear, and the surrounding landscape is lush and dramatic, with dense forests, rocky cliffs, and towering peaks.
Best White Water Rafting in Colorado for Beginners
The Clear Creek beginner raft trip is a perfect river adventure for families and groups with varying ability levels. Rafters will have a blast cruising through Class II-III rapids and learning how to paddle the river. You’ll also see the historic Argo Gold Mine and Charlie Taylor waterwheel while learning more about Colorado’s unique history. It’s an excellent way to experience the beauty of the Rocky Mountains.
Beginner-friendly rafting trips are often popular with:
- Groups of friends
- Company teambuilding excursions
They provide an exceptional opportunity to bond and have fun together.
Intermediate Places to White Water Raft in Colorado
CAC’s intermediate raft trip offers the perfect balance between challenge and fun. This river adventure features the thrill and excitement of Class III-IV white water. Expect to get wet and feel your adrenaline racing as you splash through Clear Creek’s “Nomad,” “Fall River,” “Deliverance,” and “Outer Limits” rapids.
You’ll also learn more about Colorado’s unique history as you float through the historic mining town of Idaho Springs.
Intermediate rafting trips can be a fantastic opportunity to build on your rafting skills and become a more confident and capable rafter.
Advanced White Water Rafting Colorado
If you’re an experienced white water paddler and you’re looking to test your skills through the most extreme rapids on Clear Creek, CAC’s advanced trip is a perfect fit! Rafters don’t get much of a warm-up before plunging into Class IV-V rapids, and the excitement continues non-stop after that.
Physical strength and endurance, prior rafting experience, the ability to swim, and a love of fast-paced adventure are necessary to navigate the steepest, most extreme sections of Clear Creek. Advanced rafting trips in the best place to whitewater raft in Colorado can be an awesome opportunity to test and improve your rafting skills on complex and technical rapids.
Upper Colorado River Beginner Trip
Experience Denver’s closest and most accessible family-friendly white water rafting excursion on the Upper Colorado River. This rafting adventure features Class I-II rapids and is suitable for kids as young as four years old. It’s a great way to beat the late summer heat and have fun with the whole family.
White Water Rafting Safety
White water rafting is a thrilling and exciting outdoor activity that can range anywhere from a relaxing float on the river to an intense adrenaline rush. All the same, it’s essential to be prepared and follow all of the safety guidelines set out by your guide to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip for all.
Best Time to White Water Raft in Colorado
The best time to white water raft in Colorado depends on the type of rafting experience you’re looking for and your personal preferences. The main factors to keep in mind for white water rafting Colorado rivers are weather and water levels.
In Colorado, the water levels and weather typically follow these patterns:
- The water levels are the highest in the spring and early summer, when snowmelt is at its peak. This can create more challenging and exciting rafting conditions.
- In the late summer and fall, the water levels tend to be lower, making for a more relaxed and leisurely rafting experience.
- Spring and early summer are often cooler, with a higher chance of inclement weather.
- Late summer and fall weather is typically warmer and drier.
However, the river will be cold even on hot summer days, so be prepared with appropriate clothing and gear. The water on Clear Creek comes directly from snow melt high in the continental divide. That means the water temperature in mid-summer is approximately 40°F.
Wearing quick-drying materials is the key to staying warm on the water. Avoid cotton clothing, as it takes a long time to dry and becomes heavy when wet. Helmets and personal flotation devices (PFDs) are included for all rafting trips. CAC also provides wetsuits, splash tops, gloves, and booties for any participants who want them.
See You At Clear Creek!
Because of its proximity to Denver (and popular mountain resorts), diverse range of rapids, and natural beauty, we are utterly convinced that Clear Creek is the best place to whitewater raft in Colorado!
We hope to welcome you on one of our trips soon.