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Arkansas River Rafting

Brown's Canyon Half Day Brown's Canyon Full Day Texas Creek Full Day Numbers Full Day Royal Gorge Full Day

The Arkansas River begins near the Continental Divide in the Rocky Mountains and flows through the Arkansas River Valley. This narrow valley is completely surrounded by mountains with a number of prominent peaks 13,000 feet and higher. The river is a rambunctious one that descends more than 5,000 feet in its first 125 miles. Considered Colorado's favorite whitewater river, rafting on the Arkansas is exciting for both the inexperienced and experienced adventurer.

Weather in this alpine environment is variable, with afternoon temperatures ranging from 60 to 80 degrees. Morning lows can dip into the 40s. Afternoon showers may occur, but there is usually plenty of sunshine.

Arkansas River trips are run by our partners Good Times Rafting and Arkansas River Tours. Please contact them directly for trip info, pricing, and bookings. Thanks!


The Arkansas River, in the vicinity of Buena Vista and Salida, has three canyons that are famous throughout the state for their exciting whitewater. The most popular with rafters is the section through Browns Canyon. This section has exciting Class III rapids that are challenging and fun to navigate. This family rafting trip is guaranteed to give you a thrilling ride.

Meeting Time : 9:00 AM and 1:30 PM
Minimum Age : 8 years old
Meeting Location :Good Times Rafting - Buena Vista
Cost : click here
Season : Mid-May to late August

Book the 9:00 AM Trip   Book the 1:30 PM Trip


This Arkansas River trip traverses all of Browns Canyon. The river gradient is steep, averaging 38 feet per mile, which guarantees a trip with action. At the start of the trip, rafters will have good views of the Collegiate Peaks of Yale, Harvard and Columbia in the Sawatch Range. These prominent peaks stand at 14,000 feet above sea level and have visible snowfields throughout most of the summer. A hearty lunch is served, and toward the end of the trip we tackle Seidels Suckhole, an exciting Class IV rapid.

Meeting Time : 9:00 AM
Minimum Age : 13 years old
Meeting Location : Good Times Rafting - Buena Vista
Cost : click here
Season : Mid-May to late August

Book the Full-Day Trip


The lower stretch of the Arkansas River, starting at Texas Creek and ending near the community of Parkdale, is considered a premier whitewater section, with exciting and challenging Class III and IV rapids. This rafting trip is for those looking for a less crowded run than Browns Canyon.

Meeting Time : 9:30 AM
Minimum Age : 13 years old
Meeting Location :Good Times Rafting - Buena Vista
Cost : click here
Season : Mid-May to late August

Book the Full-Day Trip


The Numbers section of the Arkansas River is still largely undiscovered by many boaters. The technically challenging Class IV and V rapids require almost continuous maneuvering to successfully complete the run. Thorough scouting from the riverbank is necessary for many of the rapids. This trip is not for the faint of heart.

The minimum age for rafters on this adventure is 18 years. This trip is not recommended for beginner rafters. We ask that Group Leaders make sure that all group members are aware of the difficulty of this trip. The length of the run is approximately 10 miles.

Meeting Time : 9:30 AM
Minimum Age : 18 years old
Meeting Location : Good Times Rafting - Buena Vista
Cost : click here
Season : Mid-May to July

Book the Full-Day Trip


This is considered by many to be the premier whitewater run in the state of Colorado. For most of the trip's length, there are continuous Class III and IV rapids. During snowmelt in June, some rapid ratings increase to Class V. We will tackle Class III and IV rapids in the morning and consume a hearty lunch before challenging the thunderous rapids in the Royal Gorge. On the run, you will encounter steep, rocky drops, large holes, swift currents, and rapids. This whitewater rafting trip is more difficult than many you'll find in Colorado, but also more exciting.

The minimum age for rafters on this adventure is 16 years. This trip is not recommended for beginner rafters.

Meeting Time : 9:30 AM
Minimum Age : 16 years old
Meeting Location : Arkansas River Tours - Cotopaxi
Cost : click here
Season : Mid-May to late August

Book the full day trip


Call us at (800) 858-6808 for more information or to reserve your whitewater rafting trip. You can also book a trip using our online booking agent. Click here for more information about group discounts and making reervations.