The Best White-Water Rafting Places in the United States

White water rafting offers a whole lot more than thrills (although you’ll certainly find those, too). They also offer breathtaking scenery and a chance to see remote stretches of America.

6 of the Best White-Water Rafting Places in North America

From Maine to California, there are amazing rafting opportunities across the United States. Here are a half dozen of our favorites.

The Colorado River Through the Grand Canyon

It simply doesn’t get any better than this excursion, which takes you through 226 miles of breathtaking scenery and class III and IV rapids. Arizona River Runners offers trips ranging from 3 to 13 days.

Kennebec River and Dead River in Maine

The rapids in these rivers range from class II to class IV and take you through backwoods Maine. The two rivers meet in The Forks, which makes a good place to stop for a rest or a bite to eat.

The Chattooga River in Georgia and South Carolina

These class III through V rapids offer the best rafting in the Southeast. The rafting is more intense in the spring, then slow down for more relaxing summer outings.

The Tuolumne River in Yosemite National Park

This trip launches from one of the most beautiful spots in America—Yosemite National Park. You’ll find grade IV and V rapids that can be enjoyed on trips ranging from one to three days.

The Salmon River in Idaho

Dubbed “The River of No Return,” the Salmon River offers class III and IV rapids. The journey takes you through one of the largest wilderness areas in the United States.

The Gauley River in West Virginia

West Virginia is known for its class IV and class V rapids. Fall is the best time to go, as the fall foliage is spectacular. Nearby Fayetteville offers great places to eat and drink, as well as hiking and mountain biking opportunities.

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