Take an exciting 100-mile white water rafting trip on the Colorado River through Cataract Canyon, one of the river's most spectacular stretches with towering walls and exhilarating rapids. Ideal for novices, this journey features three and a half days of riding an oar boat with our expert raft guides. 

Starting at: $3,195 Register Interest or Call 833-254-6678
 Relaxing at the end of the day  Colorado River near Canyonlands National Park  The Colorado River near Canyonlands National Park

Rafting Cataract Canyon on the Colorado River

5 days from $3,195

Take an exciting 100-mile white water rafting trip on the Colorado River through Cataract Canyon, one of the river's most spectacular stretches with towering walls and exhilarating rapids. Ideal for novices, this journey features three and a half days of riding an oar boat with our expert raft guides. 

or Call 833-254-6678

Tour Details

TOUR BROCHURE

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WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

One of my favorite trips. The guides made the trip very special and I loved being away and off the grid and the beauty of being in nature.

- Maryann A.

The experience was enjoyable with an excellent pair of guides, safety preparations, top-notch equipment, and scenery! From the sleeping gear to the boat, to the safety equipment, all was in new and excellent condition. You picked a very good outfitter.

- Richard F.

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

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Overview

Level 3: Moderate / Active

Expectations: This trip is part of the Smithsonian Active Journeys collection. These trips feature a daily schedule of physical activities—such as walking, hiking, kayaking, rafting, or bicycling—in addition to activities designed to offer cultural or historical context. Each trip entails a different level of physical expectations. Please review the following activity level description—and feel free to contact an Active Journeys Specialist to discuss the trip at more length—to ensure this Active Journey is right for you.

Almost anyone who is reasonably fit should be comfortable on a Moderate/Active tour (Level 3). This is primarily a rafting trip. Each day will cover 15 to 28 miles (from two to three hours a day) on the Colorado River, either motoring or paddling, encountering Class II to Class IV rapids, depending on water levels. No previous experience is necessary, and all rafting gear and equipment is provided. Optional hikes of up to 1 mile (up to one and a half hours) and up to 800 feet of elevation gain and loss are taken at a leisurely pace over terrain that will include groomed trails with short steep sections. However surfaces can be uneven, with uneven steps, rocks, mud, and exposed roots. All hikes are optional. It is always possible to stay with the raft and float to the next destination. Afternoons and evenings are at leisure to enjoy the canyon and camp.

The flight from the take-out point on the river back to Moab on Day 5 is included in the trip price. Accommodations feature one night in a comfortable inn in Moab and three nights of camping along the river in tents with cots, sleeping bags, and sleeping pads. Your river guides will assist with setting up the tents.

Appropriate for: Travelers who are physically fit, expect a slightly vigorous pace, are comfortable participating in up to three hours of rafting the river per day, and enjoy challenging themselves physically.

One of my favorite trips. The guides made the trip very special and I loved being away and off the grid and the beauty of being in nature.

- Maryann A.

The experience was enjoyable with an excellent pair of guides, safety preparations, top-notch equipment, and scenery! From the sleeping gear to the boat, to the safety equipment, all was in new and excellent condition. You picked a very good outfitter.

- Richard F.

Itinerary

Day 1 – Arrive in Moab, the Heart of the Redrock Canyon Country

Arrive at Moab, Utah airport this afternoon where you will meet your guide for the transfer to the hotel. Enjoy some free time to freshen up before the welcome dinner and river orientation meeting. You’ll be provided with information about the upcoming river trip, receive your dry bags, and have plenty of time for questions and answers with your knowledgeable river guides. (D)

Day 2 – Downriver Adventures Begin

Depart Moab this morning and drive to the put-in of Cataract Canyon on the Colorado River. After a short safety briefing, the river ride officially begins! This day will be filled with remarkable scenery as you adjust to the pace of the river and warm desert water.

Stop to explore Native American ruins and learn about the flora and fauna of this fragile desert environment. At camp this evening, your guides will assist in setting up your tents and orient you to river camping. Appetizers and refreshing beverages will be served by your guides. Enjoy river games before dinner, including horseshoes and bocce ball if you wish.

After dinner tonight, enjoy the sound of the canyon wren closing out the sunset as you adjust to the pace of the red rock canyon. Rafting 3 hours. (B,L,D)

Tonight we will be camping along the river at a private tented River Camp.

Day 3 – Exploring Ruins and Hiking Canyons

Wake up with the sounds of the mighty Colorado River as you sip your coffee or tea to get your day started. After breakfast and packing up your bags, continue your journey downriver.

Stretch your legs during the Loop Hike, which provides spectacular vistas while your rafts continue downriver. A riverside lunch will be waiting on the other side of the hike! The afternoon will be filled with enjoyable water-based activities—with plenty of options to choose from. Try your skills in stand-up paddle boards or inflatable kayaks in the warm water of the Colorado River.

Float past the confluence of the Green and Colorado Rivers. It's a tradition to swim this iconic spot where two of the West’s greatest rivers meet, before you start the journey into Cataract Canyon.

This evening, camp on a large sandy beach and the guides will surprise you with feasts and festivities that you never knew were possible in such a remote location. Hiking 1 mile, 1 hour, 800 feet elevation gain and loss. Rafting 3 hours. (B,L,D)

Tonight we will be camping along the river at a private tented River Camp.

Day 4 – Cataract Canyon and the Big Drop Rapids

Today will be one filled with excitement and thrilling rides through 30 rapids  of Cataract Canyon. Some of these rapids are the best and most classic rapids in the world—such as The Big Drops, which includes Satan’s Gut and Little Niagara Falls. The day will be filled with fun adrenaline, scouting the rapids, and your laughter echoing off the canyon walls.

Tonight will be your last night on the river—and will be a highlight to remember with a special farewell feast. Rafting 3 hours, class III & IV. (B,L,D)

Tonight we will be camping along the river at a private tented River Camp.

Day 5 – Flight over Canyonlands National Park, Afternoon in Moab

Awake for your last day on the river. While today is only a half-day of rafting—about 15 miles on the river—it’s truly one of the most spectacular canyon stretches as you go deeper into the canyon and the towering walls rise higher.

At the takeout, enjoy a light snack and then travel to the Hite Airstrip, where a charter flight will whisk you up and over Canyonlands National Park and the Colorado River. During your flight enjoy spectacular views of the landscape as you retrace your journey from the air en route back to Moab.

After saying goodbye to your guides and fellow travelers, depart from Moab this afternoon. Or, choose to extend your time in Moab and further explore Arches and Canyonlands National Parks on your own. Rafting 1 hour. Walking 1 hour. (B,L)

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)