Vail

Vail’s central location makes it easy to access Colorado’s best and varied whitewater rafting experiences. The Arkansas River, Colorado River, and Clear Creek, and Blue River are all about an hour or less from Vail and offer whitewater rafting on class II-V rapids, as well as exposure to Colorado’s most scenic and pristine areas.

Elevated Adventure with AVA

Vail’s central location serves as an ideal base for exploring all the best Colorado adventures, including Ziplining, Via Ferrata, Rock climbing, Fly Fishing, and more! The White River National Forest and Gore Range surround the area, creating opportunities for hiking, biking and exploring the area’s trails.

Our Trending Trips

Near Vail

Visitors to Vail are in a great location to access the best of summer’s mountain recreation. With easy day-trip options, you can choose from shorter 2-hour adventures or even overnight trips, ensuring there’s a perfect rafting experience for you.

AVA offers trips on the Arkansas River, Colorado River, Blue River, and Clear Creek, with experiences ranging from family friendly options to wild adventures and choices catered to your entire party.

group smiling through spray as they paddle down the Arkansas River
Exciting & Active
Best for Families & Groups

Browns Canyon 1/2 Day

 
Get ready to experience the best of Colorado on our Brown’s Canyon half-day trip. This family-friendly adventure rushes you down the Arkansas River and [...]

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group paddling between rocks on the Clear Creek, as one member raises paddle above his head
Exciting & Active
Best for Adventurers of All Ages

Gold Rush Rafting+ Zipline

 
Join us on one of our best family trips, and experience Colorado fun on the river and in the air. From our Idaho Springs [...]

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Rock climbing in the Colorado Mountains.
Heart Pounding
Best for a Full Day of Thrills

The Numbers 1/2 Day + Via Ferrata

This adventure will get your heart rate up and keep it up as you embark on our Numbers + Via Ferrata full-day excursion. This [...]

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Your AVA Vail Adventure

The Arkansas River

Discover the awe-inspiring Arkansas River just one hour away at our Buena Vista outpost. Your river or mountain adventure will immerse you in breathtaking scenery, including the majestic Collegiate Peak Mountain Range nestled within the Sawatch Range.

Arkansas River Rafting

Navigate the renowned Browns Canyon National Monument with our exhilarating Browns Canyon 1/2 Day trip. This intermediate whitewater experience not only gets your heart pumping but also offers countless opportunities to appreciate the stunning granite canyon, picturesque landscapes, and wildlife. If you’re seeking a longer adventure, our 3/4 day Browns Canyon Express and full-day Browns Canyon Sizzler trips will elevate your Arkansas River experience, and on our 24 Hours in Browns trip, you will explore Colorado day and night, as you camp under the starry sky.

For those craving more intense rapids, our Numbers 1/2 day trip will take you on an adrenaline-pumping experience, as you conquer class IV rapids and the most continuous whitewater on the Arkansas River. And for the most adventurous, don’t miss our Gauntlet-Pine Creek & the Numbers excursion, a full-day ride through the Arkansas River’s steepest section and heart-pounding class V rapids.

The Colorado River

Paddle the Colorado River from our Kremmling outpost, conveniently located just one hour from Vail. This mighty river serves as a lifeline to 36 million people and spans 7 states, carving through the majestic Grand Canyon on its way from the Continental Divide to Mexico’s Gulf of California and is a mecca for whitewater rafting and recreational opportunities.

Colorado River Rafting

Immerse yourself in the beauty of this river with our scenic half and full day float trips. You additionally have the option to paddle an Inflatable Kayak or Stand up Paddleboard,  tailoring your adventure to your group. As you meander through the awe-inspiring Gore Range, you’ll encounter gentle rapids, creating a relaxing and enjoyable experience. Our float trips provide ample time to unwind, swim, and bask in the sun.

For those seeking a more immersive experience, our overnight 24 Hours on the Upper Colorado trip allows you to experience the Upper Colorado River by day and night. Additionally, we offer a range of Fly-Fishing opportunities, including Walk and Wade, Float, and Overnight trips, perfect for anglers looking to reel in the big ones, while exploring the best of Colorado’s rivers!

Clear Creek

Discover the excitement of Clear Creek, located just one hour from Vail and easily accessible from our Idaho Springs outpost. Clear Creek offers unparalleled rafting experiences suitable for all ages and skill levels, making it the top choice for rafting near the Denver area. As you journey along Clear Creek, you’ll be immersed in the rich history of Idaho Springs and its mining valley, while experiencing breathtaking Colorado views and local wildlife.

Clear Creek Rafting

For a gentle introduction to whitewater rafting that’s perfect for all ages, our Clear Creek Gold Rush trip is an excellent choice, as you rush through eleven thrilling class III rapids, creating unforgettable memories for the whole family.

If you’re seeking a slightly more advanced experience, our Upper Clear Creek 1/2 Day trip will take you through class IV rapids, where you’ll navigate steeper and more technical sections, and our Lower Canyon 1/2 day trip provides an introductory option to more challenging class V whitewater rapids that will get your heart racing. For those craving the most intense thrills and exhilarating rapids, our Phoenix trip is the ultimate choice. Embark on a full-day advanced journey covering 20 miles of non-stop excitement!

BLUE RIVER

Raft the the Blue River, located only a half hour from Vail in charming Silverthorne, Colorado. As a tributary of the renowned Colorado River, the Blue River presents an opportunity to raft amidst breathtaking views of the Gore Range and the iconic Quandary Peak. Embark on our exhilarating Blue River Express trip and navigate class III rapids on a 2 hour adventure perfect for all ages!

Mountaintop and Other Adventures Near Vail

family rafting the Upper Colorado River on a scenic float trip

Family-Friendly Rafting

If you are looking for a scenic and relaxing adventure for ages 2 and up, head north to the Upper Colorado River for our float trips, where everyone even has the option to swim! The Blue River has great family rafting just outside just about 30 minutes east of Vail.
man smiling through the spray

High Adrenaline Rafting

The Gauntlet on Pine Creek and The Numbers sections of the Arkansas River is some of the most intense rafting in the state. This stretch of the Arkansas River will get your heart pumping! And choose our Rappel into the Gauntlet trip for an extra rush, as you drop to your waiting raft.
two girls ziplining through the trees in Colorado

Ziplining near Vail

Our Mountaintop ziplining course in Buena Vista is a breath-taking experience with great views of the Arkansas River. This zipline adventure is integrated into the cliffside where you will zip above the trees, and even race each other!
Woman traversing the mountainside on AVA's granite Via Ferrata course

Via Ferrata near Vail

We also offer an one of a kind Granite Via Ferrata course at our Buena Vista outpost. Traverse the cliff face, climbing across iron rungs and bars, and experience our stomach dropping 78 foot controlled freefall!

Vail Whitewater Rafting and Other Activities

 

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group smiling as they conquer the rapids
Maximum Adrenaline
Best for Adrenaline Junkies

The Gauntlet- Pine Creek & Numbers

Experience the wildest rafting offered on the Arkansas River in Colorado.  On this full day rafting adventure, you’ll have the opportunity to navigate the [...]

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Group of rafts paddling through Brown's Canyon on the Arkansas River
Thrilling & Very Active
Best for a Day of Excitement

Browns Canyon Rafting + Via Ferrata

Excitement and scenery await on your Browns Canyon + Via Ferrata full-day adventure. Climb into the Rocky Mountains and rush the rapids of the [...]

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Person ziplining through Colorado fall foliage
Thrilling & Very Active
Best for a Full Day of Family Fun

Browns Canyon Half Day + Zipline Package

This multi-adventure package will keep you energized and smiling the entire day, as you fly through the trees on our Mountaintop Zipline course and [...]

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Rock climbing in the Colorado Mountains.
Heart Pounding
Best for a Full Day of Thrills

The Numbers 1/2 Day + Via Ferrata

This adventure will get your heart rate up and keep it up as you embark on our Numbers + Via Ferrata full-day excursion. This [...]

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Woman on zipline in Colorado.
Wild & High Exertion
Best for Thrill Seekers

The Numbers Half Day + Zipline

Experience an action-packed day with two of Colorado’s best summer activities. Soar between trees on our Mountaintop Zipline course and then splash your way [...]

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Woman preparing to begin her rock climbing adventure.
Exciting & Active
Best for a Full Day of Excitement

Browns Canyon Half Day + Rock Climb

Rock climber with a spotter.
Heart Pounding
Best for Thrill Seekers

The Numbers Half Day + Rock Climb

Experience an action-packed day with two of Colorado’s best mountain activities! On this multi-adventure package, you’ll have the opportunity to raft the iconic Arkansas [...]

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A thrilling moment captured as a raft plunges down a steep drop, surrounded by cascading whitewater.
Exciting & Active
Best for the ultimate Colorado experience

24 Hours in Browns Canyon

Experience Colorado’s best overnight whitewater rafting. This trip provides a unique way to explore the most popular stretch of whitewater rafting in the country [...]

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Other Rafting and Outdoor Adventures Near Vail

Arkansas River near Buena Vista, Colorado.

Arkansas River

The Arkansas River in Colorado begins in the Sawatch Range near Leadville and Buena Vista and joins the Mississippi River in Arkansas. The Arkansas River is one of Colorado’s most notable natural landmarks and waterways and offers some of North America’s most popular whitewater stretches. Here you’ll find everything from the wild and challenging section of Pine Creek near Granite, CO, to the thrilling and scenic family-friendly rapids of Browns Canyon near Buena Vista, to the towering rock walls of the Royal Gorge near Cañon City. With every class of whitewater available and great Colorado rafting for families with young kids, groups and adrenaline junkies, Arkansas River rafting truly has something for everyone.

Rafters navigating intense whitewater and spray.

Colorado River

The Colorado River, a spectacular force of nature, is the lifeblood of the American West. Meandering over 1,450 miles from the snowy peaks of the Rocky Mountains all the way to the deserts of Mexico, this river passes through five U.S. states and eleven National Parks. As one of the longest rivers in the United States, it has etched some of the world’s most awe-inspiring features into the earth, including the Grand Canyon.

Along its course, the Colorado River represents a vital water source for millions of people and agricultural areas, as well as supports a rich diversity of wildlife. It also serves as a recreational paradise, offering world-class opportunities for white-water Rafting, Fishing, and Camping, and its rich and enduring history makes the Colorado River a crucial aspect of the landscape of the western United States.

The Colorado River offers rafting numerous opportunities for Whitewater Rafting amidst the backdrop of stunning scenery. From fun float trips appropriate for ages 2 and up to challenging, pulse-pounding rides, the Colorado River has river trips for everyone. Join AVA in Kremmling, Colorado for a trip down this mighty river, where the area’s mellower waters make it the perfect destination for river adventure, with activities including Rafting, Fly-Fishing, Kayaking, and Stand-Up Paddleboarding.

Clear Creek rafting trip.

Clear Creek

Clear Creek runs from Loveland Pass through Golden and The Front Range and eventually joins up with the South Platte River. This river flows through Clear Creek Canyon in the Rocky Mountains directly west of Denver, following alongside I-70 and through the town of Idaho Springs, where the first gold was found in the late 1850s during the Colorado gold rush.

Located in an old mining valley in the Colorado Rockies, its proximity to Denver, Boulder, Summit County and Winter Park makes Clear Creek rafting an easily accessible favorite for locals and travelers alike. Conveniently located only 30 minutes from Denver, our Idaho Springs outpost allows easy access to one of Colorado’s most well known rivers. Clear Creek runs through Idaho Spring’s historic mining valley, providing opportunities for scenic views and potential wildlife spotting, while flowing through fun and floaty rapids.

Image of Buena Vista, Colorado.

Buena Vista

Located at the base of the Collegiate Peaks within the Sawatch Mountain Range, Buena Vista, Colorado sits at almost 8,000 feet in elevation, with more 14ers than in any other area in Colorado. The area also hosts the Continental Divide to the east, and the Arkansas River flows through the town, providing opportunities for both mountain and river adventures.

The town of Buena Vista dates back to 1880 and originally gained prominence for its mining and railroad industries. Today, many people visit Buena Vista for its namesake – to take in its “Beautiful views” and experience some of Colorado’s best outdoors. The area offers hiking, biking, Whitewater Rafting, Horseback Riding, Camping, and numerous other opportunities to explore the outdoors. Buena Vista is also well known for its local hot springs, which are believed to have therapeutic and even medicinal qualities!

Our AVA outpost is located just 15 minutes north of Buena Vista, providing easy access to the best of the area’s outdoor adventures.

Oars up on a Colorado River.

Kremmling

Kremmling is the perfect destination for families looking for a mountain getaway. Our Upper Colorado River Scenic Float rafting trip welcomes adventurers as young as 2 years old on a half day or full day adventure on mellow Class II rapids. While in Kremmling, be sure to also try one of our Fly Fishing excursions or kick up dirt on our UTV Rentals!

You will find our Kremmling outpost just 45 minutes from Summit County and just under two hours from Denver.

Blue River near Breckenridge, Colorado.

Breckenridge

The magic of summer in the mountains comes alive in Breckenridge, Colorado. Located within Summit County, Breckenridge offers skiing and snowboarding, alongside plenty of opportunities for winter sports, yet the temperate summer weather and high alpine environment transform Breckenridge into a mecca for summer adventure. Breckenridge, Colorado is the place to visit if you are looking for a hip mountain town with access to the best outdoor adventures the Colorado mountains have to offer. Best of all, you’ll find Whitewater Rafting trips near Breckenridge on 4 different rivers!

In summer, Breckenridge hosts several festivals, a vibrant downtown arts scene, and numerous high alpine adventures. Its downtown Main Street includes numerous restaurants, bars, and shops, and people flock from across Summit County and Colorado to try Breckenridge’s diverse food scene. The town also offers cultural and arts opportunities, including open galleries, arts classes, and multiple museums. Whether you’re looking to explore the mountains, the town’s rich history, or its unique food scene, Breckenridge has a plethora of diverse adventure opportunities for all!

Rafting outside of Idaho Springs, Colorado.

Idaho Springs

Idaho Springs, located just 30 minutes from Denver and within an hour of Boulder, Summit County and Winter Park, is home to one of our AVA outposts! Colorado’s first gold was discovered here, and it is said that the Gold Rush originated in Idaho Springs. Visitors can explore the areas rich history through tours of the Argo Mill and Tunnel and Phoenix Gold Mine and relax in the notable Indian Hot Springs. The town also boasts several unique and local restaurants you will want to check out after your outdoor adventure!

The Idaho Springs area offers the best Whitewater Rafting near Denver on the Clear Creek, and our outpost includes exciting cliffside Zipline and Via Ferrata tours. The area’s location near Mount Evans, one of Colorado’s numerous 14ers, offers opportunities for hiking and wildlife spotting, and visitors can drive to the summit via the Mount Evans Scenic Byway.

Image of Buena Vista, Colorado.

Buena Vista

Buena Vista, CO 81211

Located at the base of the Collegiate Peaks within the Sawatch Mountain Range, Buena Vista, Colorado sits at almost 8,000 feet in elevation, with more 14ers than in any other area in Colorado. The area also hosts the Continental Divide to the east, and the Arkansas River flows through the town, providing opportunities for both mountain and river adventures.

The town of Buena Vista dates back to 1880 and originally gained prominence for its mining and railroad industries. Today, many people visit Buena Vista for its namesake – to take in its “Beautiful views” and experience some of Colorado’s best outdoors. The area offers hiking, biking, Whitewater Rafting, Horseback Riding, Camping, and numerous other opportunities to explore the outdoors. Buena Vista is also well known for its local hot springs, which are believed to have therapeutic and even medicinal qualities!

Our AVA outpost is located just 15 minutes north of Buena Vista, providing easy access to the best of the area’s outdoor adventures.

Blue River near Breckenridge, Colorado.

Breckenridge

Breckenridge, CO 80424

The magic of summer in the mountains comes alive in Breckenridge, Colorado. Located within Summit County, Breckenridge offers skiing and snowboarding, alongside plenty of opportunities for winter sports, yet the temperate summer weather and high alpine environment transform Breckenridge into a mecca for summer adventure. Breckenridge, Colorado is the place to visit if you are looking for a hip mountain town with access to the best outdoor adventures the Colorado mountains have to offer. Best of all, you’ll find Whitewater Rafting trips near Breckenridge on 4 different rivers!

In summer, Breckenridge hosts several festivals, a vibrant downtown arts scene, and numerous high alpine adventures. Its downtown Main Street includes numerous restaurants, bars, and shops, and people flock from across Summit County and Colorado to try Breckenridge’s diverse food scene. The town also offers cultural and arts opportunities, including open galleries, arts classes, and multiple museums. Whether you’re looking to explore the mountains, the town’s rich history, or its unique food scene, Breckenridge has a plethora of diverse adventure opportunities for all!

Rafting outside of Idaho Springs, Colorado.

Idaho Springs

Idaho Springs, CO

Idaho Springs, located just 30 minutes from Denver and within an hour of Boulder, Summit County and Winter Park, is home to one of our AVA outposts! Colorado’s first gold was discovered here, and it is said that the Gold Rush originated in Idaho Springs. Visitors can explore the areas rich history through tours of the Argo Mill and Tunnel and Phoenix Gold Mine and relax in the notable Indian Hot Springs. The town also boasts several unique and local restaurants you will want to check out after your outdoor adventure!

The Idaho Springs area offers the best Whitewater Rafting near Denver on the Clear Creek, and our outpost includes exciting cliffside Zipline and Via Ferrata tours. The area’s location near Mount Evans, one of Colorado’s numerous 14ers, offers opportunities for hiking and wildlife spotting, and visitors can drive to the summit via the Mount Evans Scenic Byway.

Oars up on a Colorado River.

Kremmling

1606 Park Avenue
Kremmling, CO 80459

Kremmling is the perfect destination for families looking for a mountain getaway. Our Upper Colorado River Scenic Float rafting trip welcomes adventurers as young as 2 years old on a half day or full day adventure on mellow Class II rapids. While in Kremmling, be sure to also try one of our Fly Fishing excursions or kick up dirt on our UTV Rentals!

You will find our Kremmling outpost just 45 minutes from Summit County and just under two hours from Denver.

Arkansas River near Buena Vista, Colorado.

Arkansas River

40671 US-24
Buena Vista, CO 81211

The Arkansas River in Colorado begins in the Sawatch Range near Leadville and Buena Vista and joins the Mississippi River in Arkansas. The Arkansas River is one of Colorado’s most notable natural landmarks and waterways and offers some of North America’s most popular whitewater stretches. Here you’ll find everything from the wild and challenging section of Pine Creek near Granite, CO, to the thrilling and scenic family-friendly rapids of Browns Canyon near Buena Vista, to the towering rock walls of the Royal Gorge near Cañon City. With every class of whitewater available and great Colorado rafting for families with young kids, groups and adrenaline junkies, Arkansas River rafting truly has something for everyone.

Rafters navigating intense whitewater and spray.

Colorado River

Kremmling, Colorado

The Colorado River, a spectacular force of nature, is the lifeblood of the American West. Meandering over 1,450 miles from the snowy peaks of the Rocky Mountains all the way to the deserts of Mexico, this river passes through five U.S. states and eleven National Parks. As one of the longest rivers in the United States, it has etched some of the world’s most awe-inspiring features into the earth, including the Grand Canyon.

Along its course, the Colorado River represents a vital water source for millions of people and agricultural areas, as well as supports a rich diversity of wildlife. It also serves as a recreational paradise, offering world-class opportunities for white-water Rafting, Fishing, and Camping, and its rich and enduring history makes the Colorado River a crucial aspect of the landscape of the western United States.

The Colorado River offers rafting numerous opportunities for Whitewater Rafting amidst the backdrop of stunning scenery. From fun float trips appropriate for ages 2 and up to challenging, pulse-pounding rides, the Colorado River has river trips for everyone. Join AVA in Kremmling, Colorado for a trip down this mighty river, where the area’s mellower waters make it the perfect destination for river adventure, with activities including Rafting, Fly-Fishing, Kayaking, and Stand-Up Paddleboarding.

Clear Creek rafting trip.

Clear Creek

Clear Creek

Clear Creek runs from Loveland Pass through Golden and The Front Range and eventually joins up with the South Platte River. This river flows through Clear Creek Canyon in the Rocky Mountains directly west of Denver, following alongside I-70 and through the town of Idaho Springs, where the first gold was found in the late 1850s during the Colorado gold rush.

Located in an old mining valley in the Colorado Rockies, its proximity to Denver, Boulder, Summit County and Winter Park makes Clear Creek rafting an easily accessible favorite for locals and travelers alike. Conveniently located only 30 minutes from Denver, our Idaho Springs outpost allows easy access to one of Colorado’s most well known rivers. Clear Creek runs through Idaho Spring’s historic mining valley, providing opportunities for scenic views and potential wildlife spotting, while flowing through fun and floaty rapids.