Wilderness River Adventures has been running guests down the Colorado River for over 50 years, so you can be sure they know what they’re doing! They credit their success (and their rave customer reviews) mostly to their guides: in addition to maneuvering your raft through the Colorado River’s rapids, your river guides know all about the Canyon’s geology, history, and ecology and love to share their knowledge with you throughout the voyage. You’ll even learn about astronomy as you watch the stars from your sleeping bag at the heart of the Canyon! In addition, the guides cook gourmet meals for guests and deal with the portable toilet system—yes, that’s right, these adventures do involve a bit of “roughing it”! Wilderness River Adventures is committed to sustainability, working to ensure that the unique majesty of the Grand Canyon will be preserved.
Wilderness River Adventures Features & Amenities (in all tours):
- Incredibly friendly and knowledgeable river guides who will steer you through the rapids, help you set up camp, cook delicious meals, describe the passing vistas (history, geology, ecology, astronomy, etc.), and anything else that might improve your Wilderness River Adventures experience
- Large, sturdy rubber rafts intended for touring—both motored (motorboats are specially engineered for efficiency, cleaner emissions, and noise reduction) and oar-powered, depending on your choice of trip
- Camping gear provided for every passenger: sleeping bag, cot (on motorized adventures) or foam pad (on oar adventures), ground tarp, tent, folding camp chair, waterproof storage (one bag for your sleeping bag, one for your clothes, and one smaller bag plus dry box for your day gear), and eating utensils
- Gourmet, camp-cooked meals provided by your river guides (including water and soft drinks) throughout the journey
- Optional side hikes (accessible even if you’re not in the best shape of your life!) to some of the Grand Canyon’s most secluded and little-known passages, side canyons, waterfalls, and more
- Transportation from Page, AZ to the Canyon and back—including a chartered helicopter out of the Canyon and a flight back to either Page or Las Vegas
Notes and Things to Improve:
- Please note that Wilderness River Adventures does not offer day trips—however, they do run a 3-day tour (shorter than most competitors’ options)
- Though Wilderness River Adventures provides basic camping gear for all passengers, they do recommend that you prepare for all weather conditions in the Canyon by bringing lots of layers (especially wicking material), lotion and chapstick (skin dries out very easily under the desert sun), and lots of sunscreen, as well as your usual toiletries, prescription medications, etc.
- Wilderness River Adventures does not provide alcoholic beverages; however, you’re free to bring alcohol with you (or if you’re starting your trip further down the Canyon, you can pre-purchase alcoholic beverages which will be waiting for you)
- Children must be at least 8 years old to participate—however, there is no upper age limit for passengers!
- Note that even though transportation from Page, AZ to the Canyon and back are covered, you’ll have to arrange (and pay separately for) transportation to Page before your trip (their website provides helpful info about travel options)
- Please plan to arrive in Page the day before departure, as passengers must attend an informational meeting that evening
- Wilderness River Adventures tours run between April and October; if you want to go on a particular trip, you can choose from their departure calendar
Sample of Popular Wilderness River Adventure Tours
The full, 225-mile, 16-day, oar-powered rafting tour of the Grand Canyon takes you from Lee’s Ferry to Diamond Creek. The trip includes 73 rated rapids (for more timid travelers, your raft’s lifted back seats lessen impact and prevent soaking!), as well as plenty of time to experience all the wonders of the Canyon, from spectacular mile-high cliff faces to Indian ruins to lots of Southwestern wildlife! If you don’t have time for the full multi-week adventure, you can choose to do part of the trip instead: either a 6.5-day tour of the Upper Canyon (88 miles with 28 rated rapids) or a 9.5-day tour of the Lower Canyon (126 miles with 45 rated rapids).
Best of Grand Canyon Trip:
See all the Grand Canyon has to offer in your choice of raft and within your time constraints: choose from a 6-, 7-, or 8-day motorized trip or a 12- or 14- day oar-powered trip. All motorized trips cover 188 miles of river (with 67 rated rapids), and you can choose the day-length that’s best for you based on how much time your want to spend on side-excursions, or on the number of nights camping under the stars, the amount of relaxation in the midst of some of the world’s most magnificent landscapes… and so on. Similarly, the oar-powered trip covers 225 miles (with 73 rated rapids), and you can choose a slightly shorter or longer tour time depending on your schedule and what’s best for you.