Hughes River Expeditions

Selway River

The Selway River Trip is a premier mountain wilderness, whitewater, camping, and fly fishing trip that flows through beautiful forested canyons.  It is easy to consider the Selway to be the ultimate rafting trip.  River banks are lined with Grand Fir, Douglas Fir, Cedar, Ponderosa Pine, Hemlock… Rapids are challenging, the area is remote, and the scenery and water quality are outstanding.

View of the boats parked at Bridge Camp

Selway River


For 47 river miles from Paradise launch site to take-out at Race Creek the river descends over 1300 feet for an average gradient of 28 feet per mile.   There are countless tributary creeks, and the Selway’s volume grows quickly. At Mile 26.5 Moose Creek joins the Selway.  Rapids that follow the confluence with Moose Creek are renown as “Moose Juice”.

Great time with Hughes River Exp…. Thanks again.”

— G. Coker, Denver, CO

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Breaking throw hole at Jims Creek

Rafting the Selway


There are plenty of calm stretches, however, the Selway is a whitewater trip. There are 38 named rapids including the well-known Galloping Gertie, Washer Woman, Cougar Bluff, Ping Pong Alley, Goat Creek, Bear Creek, Rodeo, Pettibone, Dog Creek, Magpie, Ham, Tony Point, Divide, Double Drop, Grizzly Saddle, Ladle, Little Niagara, Puzzle Creek, No Slouch, Miranda Jane, Osprey, Tango, Wolf Cr, Jims Creek, Cupboard Creek, and more.  Difficulty ranges from Class II to Class IV+.  Goat Creek, Ham, Double Drop, Ladle & Wolf Creek are highlights.

The trips are outfitted with self-bailing oar and paddle rafts.

Fly Fishing on the Selway River


Blue ribbon fly fishing for wild Westslope Cutthroat Trout.  Catch and release regulations with single barbless hooks on both the Selway and tributaries.  Check with the Hughes Office for details.

Limited Use


Your trip will encounter few if any other river runners.  Selway River Management by the Bitterroot National Forest limits use to a single launch per day.  There are only four outfitters permitted for the river.  We are privileged to be one of the four.  Group size is limited to 16 total people, including guides.  Check with the Hughes Office for details.

Selway whitewater shot wolf

Off the River


Camps are incredible.  Many among the best in the West.  A river trail and side trails offer hiking opportunities.

Wildlife includes elk, mule deer, black bear, cougar, otter, beaver, mink, osprey, eagles, and a variety of song birds.

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Wild and Scenic Rivers and Wilderness


The Selway River is protected as one of the “original eight” National Wild and Scenic Rivers.  On the Selway we float inside the vast Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness (1.3 million acres, 2,094 square miles).  Special Use Permit by the West Fork Ranger District, Bitterroot National Forest.  The Selway trip travels through the Bitterroot and Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests.  Hughes River Expeditions, Inc. is one of only four outfitters permitted and licensed to outfit trips on the Selway River.

The Selway-Bitterroot and Frank Church Wilderness Areas are practically contiguous. Barely separated by a 95 mile rugged winding gravel road called the Magruder Corridor.  The Frank Church totals 2.36 million acres (3,698 square miles). The Gospel Hump Wilderness includes 205,796 acres (322 square miles) and is adjacent to the Frank Church. Combining the Selway-Bitterroot, Frank Church, and Gospel Hump Wilderness areas creates a vast 3.87 million acre (6,114 square mile) wilderness complex. This is the largest intact piece of wild land in the United States outside of Alaska. Idaho’s Selway, Middle Fork of the Salmon, and Main Salmon – River of No Return flow through these wilderness lands. Hughes River Expeditions, Inc. is thrilled to outfit for the public on each of these spectacular Idaho rivers.

Hughes River Expeditions, Inc. is one of only two river companies to hold Special Use Permits to outfit rafting trips on both the Selway River and the Middle Fork Salmon.  We are convinced they are the best wilderness rivers in the USA.  We take this opportunity seriously.

Guest Experiences on The Selway River

Your guides were among the best I ever witnessed.  I told Colin the same, and that the Selway is the best river trip in the West.  What a canyon and forest.
J. Moodey (2019)

Selway River - Schedule and Rates

June 18-22* 5 Days $3,999 Full
June 26-30^ 5 Days $3,999 Full
July 14-19* 6 Days $4,350 Full
July 25-30* 6 Days $4,350 Fulll
Early August Fishing Trip~ 6 Days $4,900 Full
June 29-July 2* 6 Days $4,500 Full
July 7-12* 6 Days $4,500 Full
July 15-20* 6 Days $4,500 Full
July 23-28* 6 Days $4,500 Fulll
Early August Fishing Trip~ 6 Days $5,100 Full
June 29-July 2* 5 Days $4,200 Inquire
July 7-12* 6 Days $4,600 Inquire
July 15-20* 6 Days $4,600 Inquire
July 23-28* 6 Days $4,600 Inquire
Early August Fishing Trip~ 6 Days $5,500 Inquire

^ 11 Guests/5 Guides
* 10 Guests/6 Guides
~ 8 Guest/8 Guides (Fishing Trip)
Deposit: $750/person for 5 Day and 6 Day Trips

Depending on water levels and road conditions, flights may be required to reach the river. When required flight cost is $150/person payable to pilots at the time of your flight.

This institution is operated under Special Use Permit from the Bitterroot National Forest. This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

Selway River Trip Information Documents


This institution is operated under special use permit with the Bitterroot National Forest.  This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

Paddle Boat entering Wolf Creek.
selway river fern grotto

We’re here to answer any and all of your questions!

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