The Cataract Canyon section of the mighty Colorado River is one of the top white-water rafting destinations in the world. Located south of the Moab region of Utah United States, this river stretch begins on a spot called “The Confluence”, where the Colorado River meets the Green River.
Powered by the Green River, the rapids generated at Cataract Canyon will challenge even the most seasoned rafters. But Cataract Canyon also offers something extra, and that is its spectacular natural beauty, enhanced by cliff walls reaching up into the clear blue sky. Thus, a rafting trip to the Cataract Canyon is a welcome and refreshing change to bustling city life.
Rafting this 100-mile section means breaking into the heart of Canyonlands National Park. The journey promises to be exciting, intense and at some points, heart stopping. In fact, Cataract generates some of the biggest and most intense rapids in the country. But white-water rafting in this region is not just about non-stop action. You will also experience some calm waters while going through this section. This will give you the opportunity to really admire the wonderful beauty of the canyon landscape and other surrounding geological formations. Be sure to bring your waterproof camera!
Most adventure seekers who want to explore the white water madness in Cataract Canyon book a guided trip which can last from 1 to 5 days. The trip’s highlight of course is the rafting, but longer itineraries will also include land tours and relaxation in nature. Many outfitters promise the assistance of professional and experienced guides in their offered adventure package.
The highest water flows between mid-May and mid-June, but the water level may vary from year to year. However, tackling the Cataract Canyon stretch whether it has high or low water is still quite the experience. Specific spots like Satan’s Gut, Brown Better, Big Drop and Mile Long are some of the runs that will brew up nothing but thrill and excitement. These spots can range from class I to III. Aside from powerful whitewater, the Mile Long Rapid, in particular, features a series of sheer drops. Big Drops and Satan’s Gut are all appropriately named as they offer rafters gigantic and quick succession waves.
A one-day trip mainly involves just rafting the white water rapids. Tour companies usually make use of jet boats to get you right away to the rafting section. Multiple-day trips involve experiencing the rapids several times as well as going camping along the river and doing hikes to some ancient dwellings in the area. Outfitters typically provide meals and camping gear.
If you have the budget, consider returning to Moab on a picturesque charter flight after your rafting adventure. From the air, you will get an amazing perspective of the rapids in Cataract Canyon. But take note, you always have the option to go back to Moab on a shuttle van. Doing so does not take anything from your Cataract Canyon rafting experience.
It is possible to bring the entire family on a rafting trip to Cataract but regulations will vary when it comes to age limits. Be sure to check with your chosen outfitters to see if your children can come. You can also organize the trip to coincide with other families.