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Whitewater Rafting in Idaho: Visiting the Clearwater, Lochsa and the Selway


photo 2 (2)Idaho has more whitewater river miles than anywhere in the lower 48. Perhaps that’s why white water rafting in Idaho is an item on many people’s bucket list. Here at America’s Rafting Company, we are fortunate enough to run a couple of the major rivers in Idaho: the Snake River through Hells Canyon and the Salmon River. We, of course also run the Owyhee River and backpack in the Seven Devils, but most of our river miles are on the Snake and the Salmon. Just like many of you, we have a bucket list too! On our bucket list is comprised of traveling abroad, acquiring other river permits, visiting Alaska as often as possible and most recently: whitewater rafting the upper Selway River. We had never visited the Bitterroot Mountains, but have been dying to make a trip up there. It’s only about 2 1/2 hours away from base camp, so I’m not sure why we’ve put it off for so long (well, in our defense, we have been staying pretty busy white water rafting in Idaho) I can now say that seeing the Bitteroots and all that they hold, was well worth the wait. So, we hopped in the new van with our pooch and some sleeping bags and hit the open road. The weather was supposed to be great, a little rain here and there, but sunny otherwise and we had a couple days to spare. Maybe it was the final stretch of cabin fever that made us look for a getaway. Whatever the reason, I am thrilled we went! We had so much fun and can’t wait to go back! We headed north on 95, through Riggins, Whitebird and eventually turned in Grangeville and traveled towards the Clearwater River.
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Without any true plan or itinerary, we were free to do what we wanted at our own pace. We spent some time exploring the Clearwater and watching people fish, it was a little rainy that afternoon, so we decided to keep on trekking in the van, out of the rain. After following the Clearwater for quite some time, we came to the confluence of all three rivers: the South Fork of the Clearwater, the Lochsa and the Selway, the rivers are merged into a migty force and become the Clearwater River. The confluence was quite amazing! After spending some time exploring there a bit, we decided to head up the Selway River to Selway Falls…. 026 I will finish this post next week and talk about the trails, the Falls, the Steelhead and the magic of it all!

See you on the river…. 

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