Lower Salmon River Gorge – Idaho
Roller coaster rapids, perfect swimming water, and wonderful canyonlands. The Salmon River drifts through quiet pools and surges into churning whitewater. Camping on exotic pure white sand beaches is unforgettable. The largest undammed river in the continental United States.
Whitewater rafting and inflatable kayaking trips on the Salmon River are incredible outdoor vacations. The Salmon is famous as Idaho’s “River of No Return”. Enjoy long summer days, warm swimming water, the largest pure white sandbar camps in the West, roller coaster rapids, and wonderful canyonlands.
The “River of No Return” drifts through quiet pools and surges into churning whitewater. Lower Salmon River Canyons are an ideal place to enjoy paddle rafts and inflatable kayaks. Green, Cougar, Snow Hole, and Blue canyons offer many of the Salmon’s best rapids, including Wrightway Drop, Demons Drop, Pine Bar, Bodacious Bounce, Half & Half, Snow Hole, China, Wapshilla, Flynn Creek, Zig Zag, Slide, Sluicebox, Checkerboard, Eye of the Needle, and more.
The international whitewater rating for these trips is Class III-IV, with primarily Class III rapids.
Camping on the Salmon’s huge sand beaches is unforgettable. As the largest undammed river in the lower 48 states, the Salmon provides a unique opportunity to enjoy pristine sandbars and natural riparian areas. The camps are perfect for swimming, frisbee, volleyball, or making a sand castle.
Fishing the Lower Salmon River
Many species of cold and warm water fish live in the Salmon River, including rainbow trout, smallmouth bass, white sturgeon, steelhead, and salmon. Summer trips offer fly and spin casting for bass and trout, and “catch and release” fishing for white sturgeon. Learn more about fishing the Salmon River Canyons.
Many of our summer guests plan to include fishing as part of their trip. Serious fishermen can arrange fishing rafts with 2 guests/boat & guide service. Check for rates and details.
The Surrounding Terrain
The backcountry and natural histories of the Salmon Canyon are intriguing. The Nez Perce War touched this region, and stories of the Billy Creek Crossing and the Battle of White Bird are remarkable chapters of Salmon River history. We stop to inspect Chinese rock houses, abandoned mines, and Native American pictograph sites.
Salmon River Canyon provides habitat to a wide variety of wildlife. The area’s birds include canyon wren, water ouzel, kingfisher, chukar partridge, Canada geese, merganser, heron, and many more. These canyons feature one of the world’s highest concentrations of raptors. Golden eagle, red-tailed hawk, northern harrier, American kestrel, nighthawk, and osprey all frequent the Canyon. You can hear coyotes howl and spot beaver, otter, or mink. Mule deer and white-tailed deer are often seen during the summer. Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep, elk, cougar, and bobcat are common but rarely spotted.
Salmon River Canyons 2022 Schedule and Rates
|July 2-5||4 Days||$1,785||$1,680|
|July 8-11||4 Days||$1,785||$1,680|
|July 17-21||5 Days||$2,120||$1,925|
|July 25-29||5 Days||$2,120||$1,925|
|July 31 – August 4||5 Days||$2,120||$1,925|
|August 8-12*||5 Days||$2,120||$1,925|
|August 15-19||5 Days||$2,120||$1,925|
|August 22-26||5 Days||$2,120||$1,925|
|August 29 – September 2||5 Days||$2,120||$1,925|
|September 9-13||5 Days||$2,120||$1,925|
|October 10-15**||5 Days||$3,300||$3,300|
*August 8-12, Perseids Meteor Shower, peak viewing August 11-12
**Fish and Chukar Trip. Fish for smallmouth bass, rainbow trout, ocean run steelhead, and white sturgeon. Two guests/boat and guide.
Deposit to Confirm Your Reservation
- 4 Days – $450/person
- 5 Days – $550/person
- 6 Days fall trip – $700/person
Rates include charter jet boat from below Confluence of Salmon and Snake Rivers to Hells Gate Marina in Lewiston. Groups can arrange custom dates. Contact HRE office. This institution is operated under Special Use Permit from Cottonwood Field Office, Bureau of Land Management. This institution is an equal opportunity provider. Youth Rate applies to kids, teens, and undergraduate students.