10 Best White Water Rafting in USA


Last updated on July 25th, 2017

White water rafting is as we all know is the most adventurous thing to experience and if you want your trip to be thrilling and unusual then try a destination where you can go river rafting. River rafting nowadays is becoming the talk of the town as it is the best way to which you can ensure the natural beauty of the planet Earth.

River rafting has many degrees and depending upon the risk involved in a particular rafting journey, these rivers are categorized into various classes. The division is also done because of the customer preference as some prefer the class I whitewater rafting which is quite calm and composed, some go in for the middle category which may be class III or IV which have fast rapids but the risk is comparatively low and the third category is the class V category which is the most challenging and scariest one and only experienced rafters or guides opt for this type of rapids. Generally, tourists prefer the class III and IV category.

You will find infinite options around the world when it comes to chose for a destination for river rafting. But the US has the maximum number of river rafting destinations in the world, especially the North American region. The sites here are amazingly beautiful and exciting and you can spend your whole trip exploring these beautiful sites. So, here we are providing you a list of the 10 best white water rafting destinations in the US which you must explore for sure.

10 Best White Water Rafting in USA:-

  1. Colorado River, Arizona

Colorado River, Arizona

Colorado River situated in Arizona is the most amazing destination for white water rafting. The beautiful river flows in between the Grand Canyons which are so huge that it makes you go awestruck. The rapid on an average is quite calm and composed and the class ranges from II to III but sometimes due to high waves and the water speed, the class category goes up to VI which can be extremely challenging and thrilling as well. There are a lot many river rafting companies which provide full-fledged rafting packages to the tourists which range from a half day vacation to a two week long as well. The rafting here at Colorado River is so in demand, which you need to get an advance booking done and that also two years in advance. People generally get attracted to this rafting destination due to its unique orange view of the Grand Canyon which they cannot find anywhere else. The rafting journey generally starts from the Hualapai Reservation which passes through the beautiful Grand Canyons. So, to get the most breathtaking experience in river rafting, you must visit this place for sure.


  1. Gauley River, West Virginia

Gauley River, West Virginia

Gauley River at West Virginia will provide you with the most challenging experience. The place is quite in demand by those people who are generally sporting lovers or who are hardcore adventurers and are ready to face any kind of challenging experience that comes in their way. If we talk about the class of the rapids out here then they are of class V category or sometimes even above that which can be quite scary of course. Gauley River rafting is rated among the most difficult and challenging rafting journey and the number of rapids here is around hundred. The view of the site is extremely beautiful with a remote kind of a landscape and of course the exclusive variety of wildlife as well. If you are just a beginner in rafting, then you can go in rafting at the Upper New River which is comparatively calm and it is totally up to you whether you want to experience the rapids or not. But before planning a trip here, make sure you know how to swim.

  1. Salmon River, Idaho

Salmon River, Idaho

Salmon River situated in Idaho is the most beautiful whitewater rafting destination in the whole of US. This is because apart from river rafting you will get to explore a lot many things out here which in turn will make your trip a memorable one for sure. The basic rafting journey starts from the Middle Fork of the Salmon River. There are around 300 challenging rapids here and almost all falling in class III and IV category. The drops here are even amazing which will actually pour your heart into your mouth. Apart from the rafting things, other things to explore out here include the major wildlife of the area which comprises of Black Bears, Bighorn Sheep, and Mountain Lions. Then the scenery of the area is actually breathtaking and the perfect backdrop for your pictures which comprises of grasslands, Canyons and the forest area. You can also camp out here as there are some amazing camping sites around the river as well. So, all in all, the area is a mixture of all i.e adventure and natural beauty which you must explore once for sure.


  1. Rogue River, Oregon

Rogue River, Oregon

Rogue River is also considered as one of the most challenging white water rafting sites in the US due to the fast moving raids and of course the waterfalls. The River flows from the Cascade Mountains and ends up in the Pacific Ocean and the flow of the river is along the Southwest region of Oregon. The river is surrounded by beautiful green Canyons which are quite dense as well. The rapids her are quite thrilling as well especially the Raine Falls which are of class V category, then there are the Upper and Lower Black Bar Falls which are comparatively calmer and fall in class III category and of course not to forget the  Blossoms Bar which is the scariest rapid of Class V category. But if you are a beginner and you have only come here to relax and do a quite relaxed rafting thing, then plan the trip at the Hog Creeks as the Argo rapids are the best for you. You will also get to see some quite exclusive varieties of birds like the Osprey, Heron and the Eagle out here.


  1. Arkansas River, Arkansas, and Colorado

Arkansas River, Arkansas, and Colorado

The Arkansas River Runs between the Colorado and the Arkansas Rivers and is quite an in-demand destination for white water rafting. A lot many companies have set up a proper tourist business at the location and offer you quite a variety of tourist and rafting packages which range from a half day package to 15 days long package as well. The river is surrounded by the extremely beautiful white mountains of the Colorado which in turn will make your rafting journey even more thrilling and exciting. The journey of rafting generally starts from the Buena Vista moving along the Brown Canyons of the Colorado where the rapids are quite high falling in the class III category. The most famous ones are the Zoom Fume and of course the Big Drop which can actually give you a heart attack. So, to experience one of the most thrilling adventures, you must visit the Arkansas River. You can plan out a weeklong trip and opt in for a camp to make your trip an unforgettable one.


  1. Nenana River, Alaska

Nenana River, Alaska

Situated in Mt. McKinley which is a huge glacier in the Alaska region of US, the Nenana River is the most famous white water rafting destination. The rapids here are extremely challenging ranging from class V to class VI category and the rafting journey is up to ten miles long. The river flows from the mainland of Alaska region and ends up to the famous Denali National Park. Surrounded by the beautiful white Alaska Mountains, the river will actually give you an amazing experience for sure. You will also get to explore a wide variety of wildlife here like Eagles, Wild sheep, etc. You can book your rafting package at the Denali Outdoor Centre which is the oldest and the most trusted tourist company out there. The rafting should be planned during the day time as the rapids are the most thrilling during the day. So, to enjoy a glacial and cold rafting experience, you must visit the Alaska Range and ensure the beauty of the location.


  1. Youghiogheny River, Pennsylvania

Youghiogheny River, Pennsylvania

The Youghiogheny River in Pennsylvania is among the highest ranked white water rafting destinations in the US. The best thing about the site is that is open for tourists for almost the whole year and the best time to visit are between March and October. The river has quite high ranked rapids that generally fall between the class of III and IV level. Another plus point of the location is that it is just a 30-minute drive from Pittsburgh which makes it quite accessible for the tourists. Your trip to the Yough River which it is famously called will be quite an adventurous one for sure with the lesser amount of risk and more amount of excitement. The most famous rapids of this river are the Double Hydraulics and the Railroad which will actually make you feel dizzy for some moments. So, if you are an adventurous junky and loves taking challenges, and of course are a good swimmer as well, then this place for river rafting is the best for you.


  1. Kennebec River, Maine

Kennebec River, Maine

This Kennebec River situated in Maine is a must visit for white water rafting. Your trip will actually turn out be the most enduring and exciting one for sure. The river rafting journey starts from the famous Harris Station Dam and the journey continues with unexpected challenges. The best time for rafting is during the day when the rapids are at their best falling into the category of class III and IV which can be quite a thrilling experience. The rafting journey is around 12 miles long which includes the famous and scariest rapids of Kennebec River, The Three Sisters and the most challenging the drop of the Magic Falls which can actually give you a stroke if you are weak at heart. The river area has some amazing tourist Companies providing you great packages for river rafting which comprises of equipment, guides, and a proper travel map. So, to experience the most harrowing rapids of US, you must visit this place once.


  1. Deerfield River, Massachusetts

Deerfield River, Massachusetts

Situated on the North Eastern side of America where river rafting is quite rare, Deerfield River in Massachusetts acts like a lifeline for the rafting lovers and of course for those you love adventure as well. The location is just a two-hour drive from the city of Boston which means it is quite accessible as well. The best area for white water rafting is the famous Monroe Bridge Dryway where the rapids are at their extreme ranging from class IV to V level which will actually give you a full on thrilling experience. The river flows from Vermont to Massachusetts at the North West. Apart from the rapids, the rafting journey comprises of other challenges as well like the huge Rocky Mountains and the deep holes which can be really scary and risky as well. The river is also surrounded by beautiful forest known as the Berkshires where you can camp out and relax over and can even plan out an outdoor barbecue party and cook your favorite fish, crab or lobster.


  1. Chattooga River, South Carolina

Chattooga River, South Carolina

The Chattooga River situated in South Carolina or we can say Georgia is a kind of a wild river which has some extremely thrilling rapids that will make your rafting journey an unforgettable one for sure. The rapids here are quite in number and generally range from class III and class V category which is quite a high level. The river is quite old and its clear blue water looks beautiful as it flows. This location is considered as the most rugged and wild rafting destination in the South east of US. Apart from that, you can also explore more things out here like hiking, mountain biking at the Asheville, N.C, where you will find delicious food and others entertaining things as well. So, for a totally wild experience in rafting, you must visit this place.



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