• Spires of Cedar Mesa sandstone in Chesler Park (Needles District)

    Canyonlands

    National Park Utah

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  • Extreme Fire Danger

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Boating

Colorful group at the scouting beach for Big Drop Two in Cataract Canyon
Colorful group at the scouting beach for Big Drop Two in Cataract Canyon
NPS Photo by Neal Herbert
 
The Colorado and Green Rivers have played a significant role in shaping the landscape of Canyonlands, and both offer an interesting way to visit the park. Above their confluence near the heart of Canyonlands, the rivers offer miles and miles of flat water perfect for canoes, sea kayaks and other shallow-water boats. Below the confluence, the combined flow of both rivers spills down Cataract Canyon with remarkable speed and power, creating a fourteen-mile stretch of Class III to V white water.

Private Permits
Permits are required for all overnight private river trips. Permits can be reserved no more than four months, and no fewer than two days, before the permit start date.

Guided Trips
Local outfitters offer a variety of guided trips, from half-day excursions to week-long floats. Most river trips involve several nights of camping.

Getting There & Facilities
There are no facilities or services along the rivers in Canyonlands. Entrenched in deep canyons, the rivers are generally hidden from view and possess a primitive, isolated character. In the entire park, only Green River Overlook offers a view of the rivers that visitors can reach with a two-wheel-drive car. All launch ramps and take-out points are located outside the park. Hiking trails lead to the rivers in each district. Well-suited to backpacking trips, each of these trails involves a long descent of 1,000 feet or more over very rough terrain.

More information about boating on the rivers....

Did You Know?

Juniper Berries

The Utah juniper, one of the most common trees in the southwest, has the ability to self-prune. During droughts, these trees will cut off fluids from one or more branches so that the rest of the tree can survive. More...