Whitewater enthusiasts have been coming to float local rivers and streams in Gunnison, Crested Butte, Almont, and Taylor Canyon for years. Whitewater kayakers are known for hitting big drops like “Stupid Falls” or “Oh Be Joyful” in late spring, risking life and limb for the thrill of the river. Whitewater rafts, canoes, and even Stand Up Paddleboards dot the rivers, streams, and rapids throughout Gunnison County all summer long.
Rafters flock to Taylor River in Almont in groups large and small to raft down this pristine river through the beautiful Taylor Canyon to Almont. Home to the Almont Resort and Three Rivers Resort, the Taylor Canyon acts as the hub of whitewater rafting in Gunnison County.
One of the largest tributaries to the Colorado River, the Gunnison River is made up of a network of steep creeks and streams. Our claim to fame is that we boast some of the steepest and fastest rivers in the West, but from Class I-VI, there is something for everyone. Mostly, folks come rafting on the Taylor and Gunnison Rivers for a half day thrill on Class II & III.
Gunnison Whitewater Park
The Gunnison Whitewater Park, home to the Gunnison River Festival every June, offers a great place to improve your skills. Features of varying levels of difficulty allow everyone from beginners to world-class experts to push themselves and learn new skills. This is a great place to practice, but it's also a great place for spectating! Watch boaters of varying skill levels hit the waves nearly every day throughout the summer!
Expert boaters looking for an extreme thrill may want to consider kayaking the Gunnison through the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park. Full of strainers, class V+ rapids, and challenging portages, the Black Canyon offers some of the most dangerous kayaking in the world. If this sounds like something you need to check off your bucket list, remember you’re kayaking at your own risk.
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