The Best Rivers for Rafting
Rafting the Gauley River, West Virginia
SMACK DOWN: Pillow Rock on the Gauley River, West Virginia, one of whitewater rafting's smash hits.  (courtesy, Wildwater Expeditions)

Welcome to some of the biggest, baddest whitewater the continent has to offer, where sometimes your only option is to go bold or go home. The rapids on these rivers are big (mostly Class III-V) and come at you with names like Heaven Help You and Upper Mash. Of course, it's not all about scaring yourself silly, though it helps add to the fun. These classics include the once-in-a-lifetime experience of Arizona's Grand Canyon of the Colorado, the soul-stirring wilderness of Idaho's Salmon River, and the rock-shaping power of the Southwest's Green and Colorado rivers.

American River, California
Chattooga River, Georgia/South Carolina
Colorado River (Westwater Canyon), Utah
Gauley River, West Virginia
Grand Canyon of the Colorado River, Arizona
Green River (Desolation Canyon), Utah
Green River (Lodore Canyon), Colorado
Kern River, California
Klamath River, Oregon/California
Middle Fork of the Salmon River, Idaho
Nantahala River, North Carolina
Rogue River, Oregon
Snake River (Hell's Canyon), Oregon/Idaho
Tuolumne River, California
Upper Youghiogheny River, Maryland

Published: 10 Jun 2011 | Last Updated: 27 Jun 2011
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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