Check Out These Wild & Scenic River Adventures For The Whole Family!…

One of Idaho’s many nicknames is “the whitewater state” due to the fact that there are 3,100 miles of river, more than any other state in the “Lower 48.” People from all over the world travel to Idaho, eventually landing in Stanley, in search of world-renowned river adventures. Whether looking for an intense day trip down Class IV stretches of glorious whitewater, a leisurely float at twilight with a scrumptious meal included, or a weeklong adventure through some of the most pristine and untouched wilderness in Idaho, you will find the perfect starting point in Redfish Lake Lodge. We’re right in the center of it all, with the headwaters of the Salmon River, also known as the “River Of No Return,” to the south and other famous stretches of the river to our east and west. As a result, there are many options when choosing your perfect river trip nearby.

Follow along for some key information and tips for finding the best river trip and outfitter for your next visit to Redfish Lake.

Day Trips

Day trips typically vary based on their length and activity level. Many of Stanley’s outfitters offer a scenic float with no rapids or whitewater, just serene water and beautiful surrounding views. This kind of trip can be enjoyed by all ages, with the season generally running from May-September.  For the adrenaline seeker,  there are Class IV rapids that can be enjoyed in May and June at the historic, Sunbeam Dam, which was demolished in 1934. There are also plenty of Class III rapids, such as “the Narrows,” which will excite anyone with its long and high whitewater stretch. If you have the confidence to pilot yourself, you’ll find the option to rent your choice of raft, inflatable kayak, or paddle board for a more individualized experience. Be sure to save room for lunch because many of these outfitters will serve you freshly-cooked food in their private camps, located directly along the banks of the river.

Sawtooth Adventure Company – 1(866) 774-4644 –

The River Company – 1(800) 398-0346 –

White Cloud Rafting Adventures – 1(800) 571-7238 –

White Otter Outdoor Adventures – 1(877) 788- 5005 –


The Middle Fork of the Salmon River

One of Idaho’s greatest natural gems is the world-renowned, Middle-Fork of the Salmon River. One  of the most famous “Wild and Scenic” Rivers in the United States (designated in 1968), this incredible body of water weaves and winds through amazing canyons, past natural hot springs, unbroken by roads or civilization for over 100 miles within the 2.3 million acre Frank Church River Of No Return Wilderness Area. The river’s long, 3000-foot decline creates a multitude of class III-IV rapids along the way, like Velvet Falls, The Chutes, Powerhouse, Hancock, and Devil’s Tooth, just to name a few. Take a once in a lifetime journey with one of these outfitters…

Rocky Mountain River Tours – 1 (208) 345-2400 –

Idaho River Journeys – 1 (888) 997-8399 –

Middle Fork Rapid Transit – 1(888) 433-5628 –

Middle Fork River Expeditions – 1 (800) 801-5146 –

Solitude River Trips – 1(406) 600-9552 –


The River of No Return (Main Fork of the Salmon River)

This part of the Salmon River greatly varies depending on the month in which you choose to visit. Earlier in the season the waters may be high and rapids may be an exciting Class III, while if you wait until later season, you may find a more leisurely and family friendly trip awaiting you. Regardless, this is an epic journey that will remind you of Lewis & Clark as you pioneer your way across Idaho. Contact these outfitters for more details…

Rocky Mountain River Tours – 1 (208) 345-2400 –

Middle Fork River Expeditions – 1 (800) 801-5146 –

Idaho River Journeys – 1 (888) 997-8399 –


If you’d like to start and finish right here at The Lodge, be sure to check out the Redfish Raft Express offered by Sawtooth Adventure Company. Running on Tuesday through Thursday afternoons from July 2 to August 16, this shuttle service will take you (and your group) on a 5-hour river adventure directly from your cozy room at Redfish Lake Lodge. Ask our Front Desk for more details.

Our region is blessed with amazing scenery and phenomenal bodies of water. Be sure to take advantage of these great opportunities to experience these natural wonders in the most raw form. You won’t regret creating these memories that last for lifetimes.