Moab to Hite Marina
The Cataract Canyon rafting trip takes you through the heart of Canyonlands National Park , with just the right balance between leisurely floating, incredible hiking, and fast moving whitewater rapids. This 100-mile journey along the Colorado River departs from Moab , Utah and finishes at the upper end of Lake Powell . With no dam to control the spring run off from the Colorado Rockies, in high water (generally in mid-May - June), the Colorado River combines with the Green River at the Confluence and produces some of the greatest white water rafting in North America. Here the river doubles in size and the rapids begin. They continue for 15 miles and, depending on water level and lake level, include 24 or more rapids. Here are the notorious ones: first is Mile-Long Rapid, a series of sheer drops and powerful whitewater. Then come a series of rapids affectionately named the Big Drops: Little Niagara and Satan's Gut. In high water, the waves are gigantic and in quick succession. From late June on, Colorado River rafting is more moderate but still exhilarating.
Spectacular scenery, fantastic whitewater, a rafting adventure through Canyonlands National Park in warm and sunny southern Utah, carefully isolated from modern civilization is perfect adventure. The red cliff walls tower 2000 feet overhead, touching that flawless Western blue sky.
Cataract is a geologist's paradise. You can see thousands of years of rock history in one glance. The river has sliced through the rock over ions of time and left it totally exposed for all to see.
Wildlife is abundant here, though it takes an observant eye to see it. Because of its many climatic environments, an extraordinary diversity of plants and animals live here. Plants range from water storing cacti to fragile wildflowers. This area hosts the largest herd of Desert Big Horn Sheep in the west. In the heat of the day you'll see eagles and hawks float along the canyon walls on the thermal airstreams. Early morning and evening there's deer, muskrat, coyote and great blue heron moving along the river's edge. Too warm for trout, the Colorado River supports the endangered Colorado Squawfish and the Humpback Chub.
Weather is usually warm and sunny and very user friendly. In May and June the day temperatures are in the 90s, with days in the high 90s and low 100s common in July and August. Brief afternoon showers are very common. Evenings are very comfortable, though cool in the spring and fall. It is a very dry climate, so the heat is not the sweltering kind. Besides, the best part about being too warm is getting into the river to cool off.The trip ends on Lake Powell at Hite Marina. If you choose to return to Moab , via the scenic charter flight, you will have the rare opportunity to enjoy a birds'-eye-view of the Colorado River and the surrounding Canyonlands National Park area. This soul-stirring canyon is without question, some of the most rugged wilderness on earth; with dazzling geologic formations, ancient Native American ruins, fascinating petroglyphs, and magnificent waterfalls to beckon your arrival. Surrender your senses as some 28 rapids take giant steps downward in one of the river’s steepest stretches, rivaling the big water of the Grand Canyon - it demands to be seen and experienced.
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