The North Platte River begins as a trickle in the mountains surrounding Walden, Colorado and flows north through the Northgate Wilderness Area. The North Platte is one of Colorado’s best-kept secrets and one of Colorado’s only remaining free-flowing white water rivers. This white water gem combines untracked wilderness with an abundance of Colorado’s finest rapids to deliver an outstanding early season adventure.
The canyon begins near the border of Colorado and Wyoming where the river spills from its source in North Park. Completely inaccessible, the “gate” of Northgate Canyon stymied French trappers in their upstream efforts to reach North Park. The French Trappers named the North Platte ‘Riviere de Plat’, meaning “Flat River”. That name characterizes much of the rivers 618 mile course before joining the South Platte River in Nebraska. Early travelers on the Oregon Trail followed it to near the present day town of Casper, Wyoming. They considered it too shallow to float, too deep to ford, and too wide to bridge.
This river would have surprised those pioneers had they followed it into the mountains. It is here, deep in the Medicine Bow Mountains, that we will float the river as it is turned on edge.
The North Platte is located west of Fort Collins and east of Steamboat Springs near Walden, Colorado. It is also within easy driving distance of Laramie, Wyoming.
North Platte River Rafting
4.6 based on
“Just wanted to say “Thanks” for a great 2-day trip. We were extremely impressed with our guides Dave and Thomas. They were professional, and made the trip that much more enjoyable. I’ve rafted with other companies before and must say that I was impressed with Wilderness Awre above all others. I will gladly refer colleagues and friends to Wa for a safe, fun, rafting experience.”
“Just wanted to thank you again for the great raft trip last weekend down the North Platte. Everyone in my group had a wonderful time as well, and is looking forward to our next trip. My thanks to Kathleen, Rob and Koni for providing us with a safe and memorable outing. Also thanks for setting up the encounter with moose, eagles and the beaver! Great planning on that!”
“We wanted to say how much we enjoyed the raft trip on the North Platte. My concern up most was safety. At no time did I or my husband feel our lives were at risk. All the guides di a great job. I enjoyed the place we camped and the meals cooked. The lunches were light which I liked. I feel we were fortunate to find your group that were knowledgeable of the river. One hears such horror stories. Future trips will be with your group.”
“I just wanted to write a review to tell you what a nice time we had on our North Platte river trip the 15th of June. It was a good surprise for my husband. He enjoyed it tremendously. The birthday cake Brad and Matt baked in the Dutch oven was a special touch. They are both excellent guides. The trip was fantastic. Thank you for your excellence.”
“We took a 2-day trip on the North Platte last month and I wanted to say what a great time we had. The guides couldn’t have been any more helpful. They were EXCELLENT! The food was brilliant and the river itself was amazing. With the exception of me falling out of the inflatable kayak and down some rapids, it was a first class trip. When next summer rolls around, you will be on the top of the list of things to do. If any of you guys are in LA, please look me up and we’ll see what we can do about a helicopter ride around LA. Thanks again for a great vacation and please let your guides know how great they were—almost as good as the boxed wine, and the next time we’ll finish it!”
This map gives an overview of the location of the Northgate Canyon of the North Platte River. All rafting trips meet and depart from “Route Access” 4.4 miles from the junction of Hwy 125 and Hwy 127. Click on an outlined section to see details including rapid names. Printer friendly souvenir-quality low-resolution or high-resolution versions of this map are great to bring along when visiting us.