Rafting in the Rocky Mountains of the Western U.S.

White water rafting and the Rocky Mountains just seem to go together don't they? There are plenty of wild landscapes in this region, marked with evergreens and snow-capped peaks. The Rockies make up the backbone of the North American continent, dividing the waters that flow to the Pacific and to the Atlantic.

The White Water Rivers of the West: Rocky Mountain Region

The Crown Jewel mountains of the Continental Divide sit in the heart of Montana's Glacier National Park along the Canadian border. If you haven't been, you're in for a surprise. There's some truly astounding mountains, glaciers, falls and forests. There are many ways to explore the area, but rafting these clear mountain streams and rivers is sure to delight.

Just across the border to the west is Idaho, a state that is known for famous potatoes doesn't even begin to describe what this state has to offer. Idaho could just as easily be famous for having the largest roadless wilderness in the lower 48 states, or the most runnable whitewater rivers... anywhere. It's almost as though the best way to get around in Idaho is by river system. Interestingly, many rivers in Idaho begin and end practically within the state and yet the rivers stretch wide enough to allow for several world-class multi-day river expeditions, namely the Snake River through Hell's Canyon (the deepest river gorge on the continent) and the famed "River of No Return" Salmon river system. Many other day trips and multi-day trips abound here, explore them!

Wyoming is home to Yellowstone, America's first National Park, and Grand Teton National Park. Jackson Hole, Wyoming finds itself tucked neatly into the foothills of these two parks, with the Snake River flowing through it. Three parts honest-to-goodness cowboy, two parts fine art gallery, and the rest wildlife (including tourists), Jackson Hole is worthy of a visit in and of itself. The northern edge of town borders on the world's largest Elk refuge. Not many places find that kind of balance. Jackson has it.

In Colorado, with Rocky Mountain National Park, you can expect mountains, and snow, and skiing. But when that white snow melts, it turns to white water rafting in the summer - and it's a lot of fun too! There's a funny phenomena in Colorado where the river that bears it's name is famous for rafting in the canyons of Utah and Grand Canyon, but not within its own state borders - and the river that IS known for whitewater rafting in Colorado bears the name of it's neighboring state of Arkansas! (Like how we drive in a parkway and park in a driveway...augh)! Besides the Arkansas River, here are plenty of other very noteworthy rivers and canyons in Colorado like the Gunnison, Dolores, and the North Platte.