Rafting has the tendency to get intimidating for families and beginners. The frothy whitewater and adrenaline-fueled trips often seem daunting, but there are ways to enjoy the river without venturing through pounding rapids! Right now is the perfect time for families with younger children or those who have never stepped foot in a raft before to get out on the river.
Why is May the perfect time for families to raft?
The rivers aren’t yet to their high water stage.
Colorado rivers are fed primarily by snowmelt, and it is during the month of May that snowpack from the mountains begins to increase water flow through these rivers. However, May temperatures don’t remain consistent enough to raise river flows to extreme levels yet but a lot of rivers are ready to go for rafters. The combination of low temperatures at night and warm air during the day regulates water levels to a manageable low that our guides love to take kids on. A higher level of ‘flow’ in a river means that there is more water running through it, being pushed faster and harder. High flow in rivers increases the level of danger on a rafting trip. The conditions present in May are therefore primed for learners and small ones!
The water will always be cold, so don’t worry about that.
Air temperatures may be a bit colder that the middle of summer, but a wet suit and a bit of dedication will set you up for a great time on the river. Lucky for you, AVA Rafting & Zipline provides wetsuits and splash jackets to our guests with no extra charge. Calm rivers also give us the chance to jump rocks and cliffs into inlets and swim in hot springs.
You’ll miss the crowd.
Rivers are significantly less crowded in May than they are in June and July. As it is the beginning of rafting season, private boaters and commercial companies alike are less likely to be on the water all the time. This may give you the chance to book a trip last minute, as it is not peak tourist season. This also offers families the chance to truly enjoy the pristine beauty of Colorado’s rivers without the nuisance of passerby boats every five minutes. The serenity of an empty river is nearly unparalleled, and often our guests’ favorite experience from their rafting trip. Empty rivers mean a far greater chance for seeing wildlife such as bighorn sheep, elk, deer, and mountain goats. Additionally, a calmer trip involves less paddling, allowing you to let your eyes wander and truly admire the scenery. All our rafting trips involve unique fauna, rock formations, and beautiful skies.
Don’t settle for just rafting…
May is also a good time of year to try our other activities, such as zip lining and horseback riding. You’ll generally get clear skies all day long during the month. Once the summer hits, afternoon rainstorms are not an uncommon occurrence. Make the most of your month by trying out an adventure package with AVA and bring the whole family along for some fun outdoor activities!