Rafting in Western Colorado

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A river rat is an identifiable look in the summertime no matter which mountain town you are in.  Usually its a young male at Kum n Go, extremely tan, water sandals, bandana, mountain hair, eating an energy bar, looking like he can’t wait to get out of civiliation and back on the river.

Colorado Rafting Association  has a lot of resources about rafting.

Two Rivers Park has a spot where  rafting trips on the Roaring Fork  can begin or end in Glenwood Springs.

There’s a spot on the New Castle back road that rafters use.

You can get out of the river at Silt Island Park.

My friends who lived in the Willits area used to tell me they did a put-in behind their house.

If you’re on vacation in Aspen, its called the Upper Roaring Fork.

Getting in a river is extremely dangerous so make sure you’re with experienced adults, wearing life jackets, and don’t take what you’re doing lightly.  If you park your car and leave all your valuables in it, lock it.  Or better yet, get a ride to and from your put in and out from Western Slope Adventures. 

If you’re going on a rafting trip with camping involved, you need to do a ton of planning.   Check out this book full of tips for rafting and camping.  You cannot dump your waste, so you’ll have to carry it with you in the raft in a bucket. 

 You cannot stop and camp anywhere along the river, there are special spots and you have to have a reservation. 

Private party rafting/camping is a big undertaking.  You need dry bags, tons of foot lotion, sunscreen, aloe, maps, skills and a plan. Once I saw kayakers on the Crystal in the Lead King Loop and they were pretty much hard core athletes doing something extreme because of the rockiness.  

 Read here about how to be a professional rafting guide.  The Colorado is a river that some raft trips dump into, like those along the road to Sweetwater by Dotsero; and it flows through the Western Slope to the Grand Canyon, another dream rafting destination.  

For Pride week or other dates, check out the Big Gay Raft Trip. Solomon is a great host, and you will have fun. 

For guided tours out of Glenwood see

Whitewater Rafting

Defiance Rafting

or Blazing Adventures

I’m looking forward to reading   this book about the early explorations of the Colorado. If you’re going on a rafting trip that begins or ends from Aspen to Silt, and you want tips for a good vacation rental, let me know!