Summer 2021 is looking a bit brighter than last year and much like everyone else, we’re setting our sights on getting back to adventures with our friends and family. If you’re planning an outing this year for your school group, bachelor party, or sports team, AVA Rafting & Zipline has a surplus of activities to accommodate you and your crew. You’ve clearly taken on the task to get everything organized and we’re here to help. Check out these 7 steps to plan your group adventures in Colorado this summer.
1. Access Your Group First – Ages, Skill Levels, etc.
With the amount of paths you can take when planning a trip, the first thing you should ask yourself is what would work best for your group. If it’s a more mellow crew, maybe a Class III rafting trip on Browns Canyon in Buena Vista would still get you paddling but be chill enough for a first timer on the river. For the higher adrenaline seeking folks, a Via Ferrata mountaineering excursion or UTV rental might be perfect for you. Begin with the following age categories and break down your options from there.
Group Member Ages
What you can do really depends on the ages in your group. There are some restrictions when you have younger kids or perhaps old folk in your family. Here are some adventure ideas for those age groups.
Ages 2 – 5 Years Old & Older
Scenic Float on the Upper Colorado River
This Class II section of the Upper Colorado River welcomes ages 2 years old and up, as long as each participant is at least 30 pounds. Not every rafting trip has to be Class V continuous sections! Enjoy this family outing close to Kremmling, Colorado this year.
5 Years Old & Older
Blue River Express 1/3 Day Rafting near Breckenridge, Colorado
This Class III 1/3 day jaunt on the Blue River is located in Summit County, Colorado, and though its season is short, it gives you an option for an afternoon on the river without a large time commitment if you’re staying in Breckenridge, Keystone, Silverthorne, or Frisco.
Guided Rock Climbing Tours in Buena Vista
Learn your way up a rock face with one of AVA’s experienced guides. We can find a route on our guided rock climbing excursions for all ages 5 and up at our crags in Buena Vista, Colorado.
Horseback Rides in Buena Vista
Venture through the Arkansas River Valley on horseback with your family. Children as young as 5 years old can join on this trip through AVA’s partner company, Mt. Princeton Hot Springs. Choose between 2-hour ride or make a day of it on a waterfall ride that includes lunch in the heart of the Colorado Rockies.
6 Years Old & Older
Gold Rush 1/3 Day Rafting on Clear Creek
Just 45 minutes west of Denver, this Class III rafting trip on Clear Creek in Idaho Springs is perfect for families with kids looking for a splashy and fun time on the river.
Cliffside Zipline in Idaho Springs
This 6-line course provides incredible views of the Continental Divide as your soar among the treetops over Idaho Springs. Challenge your friends on Line 5 – our Dual Race line and finish up the course by cruising over Chicago Creek back to our outpost.
The best part – you can combo these activities with our Gold Rush + Cliffside Zipline package for the most bang for your buck.
Mountaintop Zipline in Buena Vista
A 7-line course yields over 3,500 feet of cable for you to sail along in this beautiful area of the state. Equipped with a multitude of fun elements, AVA’s Mountaintop Zipline is a perfect 2-hour activity to up the adventure on your next vacation to Colorado.
7 Years Old & Older
Browns Canyon ½ Day Rafting on the Arkansas River
Named a National Monument back in 2015, this is one of the most popular stretches of whitewater in the country. Browns Canyon is a 10-mile trip through the Arkansas River Valley, nestled at the base of the Collegiate Peaks near Buena Vista, Colorado.
Another combo – our Browns Canyon + Mountaintop Zipline package is perfect for a day of fun for the whole family.
10 Years Old & Older
Up the ante on the Upper Colorado River and take an Inflatable Kayak out to navigate the rapids solo. Experience is recommended, especially for youth venturers, but ages 10 years old and up are welcome in duckies. Of off-roading excursions in Kremmling, Colorado also allows kids on board, but they need to be at least 5 feet tall.
12 Years Old & Older
Both of AVA’s Via Ferrata courses allow youth 12 and up to venture out on them. Take your teens on a mountaineering adventure that will get your group traversing the cliffside, rappelling down a rock face, and even building up the courage for a free fall jump.
We could ramble on about all the options that start coming into play once the youngest in the group is 15 years old, but we’ll save you the read. The best thing you can do to figure out some activities is by utilizing the Trip Finder feature on our website and saving some money by pairing a few together with an Adventure Package.
2. Choose Your Colorado Destination
AVA Rafting & Zipline has a handful of locations and partner trips that can take you all over Colorado and even into other Western U.S. states. Whether you’re staying near the city of Denver or taking your weekend getaway to the mountains near Vail, you’re not far from some adventures.
Group Outdoor Activities Near Denver, Colorado
Idaho Springs, Colorado is located just 45 minutes west of downtown Denver with a plethora of activities for you to choose from.
Stay on the West Side of Rocky Mountain National Park
Headed to Grand Lake, Winter Park, or Granby? You’re only an hour away from AVA’s Kremmling location, where you can take on some incredible adventures in Colorado’s backcountry. Kremmling is also just an hour away from Silverthorne and the Summit County area, too.
Make Your Destination Buena Vista, Colorado
The Arkansas River is lined with some great small rafting community towns, including Buena Vista and Salida, and makes for a great destination during the summer every year. Stay at Mt. Princeton Hot Springs Resort, AVA’s cabins and campsites, or venture not far into the wilderness for a true Colorado experience.
3. Create an Itinerary
Which restaurants or breweries are on your to-do list? Are you heading to multiple locations? Have you booked your lodging or campsites yet? Wrangling a large group for even a dinner reservation can be stressful, so creating an itinerary for a full day to multi-day outing can get overwhelming fast.
Lodging Might Be Your Most Stressful Task
It’s not a problem when you have a group of 10 or 15 people, but once your group number climbs up much higher than that lodging can get difficult. If you’re camping with a large group, be sure to book those sites as soon as possible to ensure that your group won’t be separated at a camping ground. Larger Airbnb’s and VRBO’s will have the best prices on their properties a few months out. Not to mention you’ll have the most options to choose from as well.
4. Consider Transportation for Your Group
If you already have your heart set on staying in Breckenridge or Denver with your large group and you don’t want everyone to be responsible for themselves getting to your adventure destination, AVA Rafting & Zipline offers transportation options to get you there. Come the morning of your trip, you won’t have to worry about a thing other than making it a day to remember.
5. Book Your Trip Early for the Best Price
The saying “early bird gets the worm” couldn’t be more true, as the best prices and biggest deals occur at this time every year. Not only does that apply to activities with AVA, but that’s true with lodging deals, flights, transportation, etc. Get a jump on your upcoming group outing and inquire about the current deals AVA has available for you now.
6. Get Prepared (& Excited)
The best part about booking your trip with AVA is the fact that we can cover most of your needs across the board. On our overnight rafting trips, the only thing not included in your trip is a sleeping bag, though they are available for rent for your multiday excursion. AVA also provides wetsuits and splash jackets on all whitewater rafting trips at no extra cost to you while some other Colorado outfitters may charge up to $20 upon arrival for their guests to rent those items. Be sure to review the following pages to make sure your group is prepared for your adventure!
7. Chat With Us!
Still have questions or need some guidance? Schedule a call with one of AVA’s adventure specialists to help point you in the right direction for your group activities this year. Our knowledge on most corners of Colorado can help you decide where you’re going, what to do, how to get there, and what’s best for your group.
Group adventures are back in action for Summer 2021! Don’t delay your planning process and reach start exploring all of your options with AVA Rafting & Zipline.