When Is The Best Time To Go Rafting in Colorado in 2019? | AVA
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The Best Time To Go Rafting In Colorado in 2019

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The Best Time for Whitewater Rafting in Colorado this year

The best time to raft in Colorado is between May – September. It’s possible to raft in Colorado starting in the early spring all the way through early fall, and the best trip for you could fall at anytime throughout depending on what experience you are looking for on the river. 

Colorado Rivers fluctuate throughout the season and from year to year. Therefore, the best time to raft can range depending on what you group wants, and what month you are rafting. Our rivers our fed by melting snow, so conditions are variable depending on the amount of snow that each region received the winter before rafting season.

What to Expect in 2019: We have received a record amount of snow, which means we will have a very long rafting season. Some sections of each river will close and we are expecting that to happen between mid June until early July. We will have rafting options for all visitors ages 2+ even with potential river closures.

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WHAT TO EXPECT DURING EACH RAFTING MONTH

MAY RAFTING SEASON

May is great time to go rafting in Colorado to avoid crowds and typically high water. We offer rafting on the following rivers in May:

  • The Arkansas River: Families with children ages 7+ as well as thrill seekers and experienced rafters.

  • The Upper Colorado River: Families with children ages 2+ as well as those looking for a relaxing river trip.

  • The Clear Creek River: Families with children ages 6+ as well as thrill seekers and advanced rafters.

JUNE RAFTING SEASON

June is a common month to raft in Colorado. Typically, we see peak run-off happen in June which means higher water. We offer rafting on the following rivers in June but the age minimums typically increase at some point during the month.

  • The Arkansas River: Families with children ages 7+ as well as thrill seekers and experienced rafters.

  • The Upper Colorado River: Families with children ages 2+ as well as those looking for a relaxing river trip or SUP/Kayak.

  • The Clear Creek River: Families with children ages 6+ as well as thrill seekers and advanced rafters.

  • The Blue River: Thrill seekers and advanced rafters. Minimum age for the Blue River may vary during June

JULY RAFTING SEASON

This is the most popular time to raft in Colorado. Typically, water levels start to decrease and age minimums go back to their listed number. The following trips are typically offered during the month of July:

  • The Arkansas River: Families with children ages 7+ as well as thrill seekers and experienced rafters.

  • The Upper Colorado River: Families with children ages 2+ as well as those looking for a relaxing river trip or SUP/Kayak.

  • The Clear Creek River: Families with children ages 6+ as well as thrill seekers and advanced rafters.

  • The Blue River: Families with children ages 5+ as well as thrill seekers and advanced rafters.

AUGUST & SEPTEMBER RAFTING SEASON

August and September bring less crowns and tamer water. This is the perfect time to raft to really take in the Colorado scenery. The following trips are typically offered at this time:

  • The Arkansas River: Families with children ages 7+ as well as thrill seekers and experienced rafters.

  • The Upper Colorado River: Families with children ages 2+ as well as those looking for a relaxing river trip or SUP/Kayak.

  • The Clear Creek River: Families with children ages 6+ as well as thrill seekers and advanced rafters.

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COLORADO WHITEWATER RAFTING LOCATIONS

Buena Vista, Colorado

The Arkansas River in Buena Vista is 1 hour south from Breckenridge. The best time to raft the Ark is between May - September.

Idaho Springs, Colorado

Clear Creek in Idaho Springs is only 30 minutes from Denver. The best time to raft the Clear Creek between May - September.

Kremmling, Colorado

The Upper Colorado in Kremmling is 1 hour north of Breckenridge. The best time raft the Colorado is between mid May - late September

Breckenridge, Colorado

The Blue River is 30 minutes from downtown Breckenridge. The best time to raft the Blue is June and early July.

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HOW TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT TRIP FOR YOUR GROUP

  • BEST RAFTING FOR FAMILIES WITH KIDS

    The best time to raft for families with kids is between July and September, however, there are plenty of trip options in May & June such as the Upper Colorado River. We recommend the following trips for kids at the following ages throughout the entire summer:

    • Kids between the age 2-4: Upper Colorado River Trips
    • Kids age 5: Blue River and Upper Colorado River Trips
    • Kids age 6: Clear Creek, Blue River, and Upper Colorado River Trips
    • Kids between the age of 7-11: Arkansas River, Clear Creek, Blue River, Upper Colorado River Trips + ziplining packages
    • Kids between age 12-14: Same as 7-11 + Via Ferrata packages
    • Those 15+: All trips on all rivers
    • *Minimum ages are subject to change based on water levels.

  • BEST RAFTING SEASON FOR RELAXING EXPERIENCES

    The best time to raft for a relaxing experience is between July and September, however, there are plenty of trip options in May & June such as the Upper Colorado River. If you are looking for a more leisurely experience for your group sit back, relax, and enjoy the incredible scenery, then the following river trips are best for your group.

    • Scenic Float Full Day Rafting on the Upper Colorado River
    • Scenic Float Half Day Rafting on the Upper Colorado River
    • 24 Hours on the Upper Colorado River
    • 3 Day Upper Colorado River Float
    • *Age minimum for all of these trips are 2 years+

  • BEST TIME TO RAFT FOR ADVENTURE SEEKERS

    The best time to raft for families with kids is between the end of May until Mid July. However, there are plenty of trip options the entire summer to get your adrenaline pumping. If you are looking for an adrenaline rush for your rafting trip, then the following rivers and trips are best for your group.

    • Clear Creek River
    • The Blue River
    • The Arkansas River
    • Stand Up Paddle Boarding and Kayaking on the Upper Colorado River
  • BEST TIME TO RAFT FOR EXPERIENCED RAFTERS

    The best time to raft for experienced rafters is typically June. However, those who have never rafted before can also raft in June just different sections of each river. If you have been out on the river a few times before, and you are looking to work hard and go out on the hardest rapids that Colorado has to offer then the following rivers are the best for you to visit.

    • Clear Creek River
    • The Arkansas River

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How will high water affect my rafting trip in 2019

Minimum Age

Minimum ages can be increased during high water. We have trips that allow rafters as young as 2, so if the age is increased we will have a different trip to offer your group.

River Closures

Certain sections of the river can be closed due to high water. Typically they close because we cannot get under bridges, the water floods over the banks, or dangerous conditions can occur. If this occurs during your 2019 rafting trip, we can move you to a different section of water that is not closed at that time.

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