Arkansas River Rafting – Hayden Meadows

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Arkansas River – Hayden Meadows White Water Rafting Description:

Near its headwaters, the Arkansas River flows mildly through a broad glacial-born valley. This shallow meadow stream section of the Arkansas River passes several ranches that have been held privately since the homesteading days. Only recently opened to the public, this section is navigable, but seldom boated.

Recommended For: Float fishing trips.

Find the Arkansas River in Colorado

Recommended White Water Rafting Trips on Hayden Meadows – Arkansas River:
At this time we do not have information on outfitters that offer Hayden Meadows as a commercial whitewater rafting trip.

Arkansas River – Hayden Meadows White Water Rafting Details:

Difficulty: Class I-II (What does this mean?)
Elevation: 9285′ to 8931′
Average Gradient: 33.7′ per mile

Access to Access

Hayden Meadows to Kobe: 3.8 miles
Kobe to Granite: 6.7 miles
Total Mileage: 10.5 miles

Notes: There is a lot of private land here with shallow gravel bars. Be careful.

GPS Coordinates to Hayden Meadows Access Points – Arkansas River:

  • Hayden Meadows Access: 39.163056, -106.322778
  • Kobe Access: 39.128333, -106.310833
  • Granite Access: 39.042711,-106.266026

Cities Near the Hayden Meadows Section:

  • Buena Vista, Granite, Leadville & Salida

Information for Arkansas River Self-Guided Boaters:

The Arkansas River is in the Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area (AHRA) and is managed by Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

  • Boating Permit Required: NO
  • Permit Details: On the off chance you do not use a developed AHRA Recreation Site, no fee of any kind is required to float the river.

Arkansas River – Hayden Meadows Access Details:

  • Sites: Hayden Meadows, Kobe and Granite Recreation Sites
  • Instructions: Follow signage at recreation sites.
  • Fee: Annual or daily permits are required to use these sites. Those without passes will be ticketed.
  • Where to Buy: Annual Permits can be purchased through AHRA in Salida or Colorado Parks and Wildlife Offices in Denver, but most people use the self-serve daily pay stations at AHRA managed access points.
  • Contact: Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area (AHRA)
    307 W Sackett Street, Salida, CO 81201
    719-539-7289 ~ www.parks.state.co.us/parks/arkansasheadwaters

Shuttles:
We do not have information on any entity that offers shuttles on this section. We recommend traveling with at least two vehicles in order to run your own shuttle.

Colorado Rafting River Guide:

Colorado Rafting River Guide
Check out our detailed information about the rivers you can raft across Colorado.

What Our Guests Say:

Matt was the most enthusiastic and exciting guide I have ever had… and I have done this a lot.
Carl M.
Sarah, our guide, was the consummate professional.
Becky M.
We’ve been with a lot of different rafting companies over the years and we have never used the same company twice but everyone on the trip agreed that your company is the best!
Lisa P.
Pete was great. Extremely friendly and he took great care of us and really put our group first. Our trip was relaxing and fun!
Erin L.
Very pleasant and enjoyable experience. Rafted four other times and this was the best.
Linda H.
I love the staff!! Very entertaining and welcoming. This was a great rafting experience. I want to come back tomorrow and do it again!
Bailey W.
From the enthusiastic greetings when we arrived at the office this am, all service was top notch.
John D.
This company is quality. Six years ago I did the same trip with Jack, Ian, and Kelly and the quality is as good today.
Chris G.
Family friend always said Wilderness Aware Rafting was the best. I totally agree!
Angie D.
Been rafting six times around the country. Best trip and guide so far.
James H.
We booked our trip cold off the internet and found from the very beginning a very friendly and courteous staff that helped out and answered all our questions.
Carolyn W.
Very professional yet very informal approach—not an easy combination to sustain—nice team—office included.
Mark W.
Your staff and guides were so helpful and so much fun. My kids ranked that half-day trip as the highlight of our month long trip!
Patty G.
Frenchie was the best guide I’ve ever had! This is a great company and I will definitely be telling friends about it!
Jamin R.
Thanks for the great time on the river. You do a super job of taking care of your crews.
Jan P.
The trip, your people, your facility never get old.
Fred P.
We started rafting with you in 1988. This is our fourth trip. Will be back.
Jim L.
The entire staff from reservations to first contact to trip guide was friendly and helpful. Our Scouts had an outstanding time!
Ken T.
One of the best times of my life!
Dylnn R.
I would like to commend your staff on their great teamwork and enthusiasm. This was the highlight of our trip to Arizona.
Michele E.
You are great to work with and your guides are fun to be around and well trained. Each experience I’ve had with you (3) has been excellent.
Dawn R.
Best time I’ve had on the river in the past 15 years!!!! Will return soon!!!
Dylan S.
We have rafted round the world and this is by far the best—best trained guides, best safety, best food, best fun. Thanks.
Jane H.
I work in safety – wish I could get all our regional safety folks to present their safety meetings with the same enthusiasm and professionalism.
Karla S.
I loved my experience at WA and will definitely be back with more people.
Cory D.
I have rafted with other companies before but I found your company and Mike, our guide, to be outstanding! I will be back!
Joe M.
Good job, as usual. Our 5th or 6th trip with WA. Big fans of WA.
Tim S.
We feel we have found new friends in Wilderness Aware and plan on spending time in the future with you.
Susie S.
It was the best first experience in rafting. Ben was awesome!! Five stars!
Kirby S.
Your internet advertising was great. People who answered the phone very helpful and the guides top notch. Seems like your manager has done a wonderful job. I see why you are a successful company.
Phil G.
Sarah was fantastic! Very knowledgeable and very fun! Best trip ever, even the low water! We will be back again!
Barbara L.
We had an awesome time! All staff we dealt with were very personable and helpful. I can’t imagine anything you could do to improve!
Rusty B.
Appreciate your professional and fun staff! Will definitely return next year!
Dana Q.
When I made our reservation I knew we were going to have a fantastic time. Everything that happened today exceeded my expectations.
Mark E.
This trip surpassed all of my expectations.
Amy B.
I want to raft again and again and well you get the point…again.
Levi V.
This was my first rafting experience and you guys made it awesome! Thank you so much!
Jamie L.
We had an awesome time. I would definitely recommend your company!
Leona H.
I started rafting at WA in 1999 and have always had a good time. I highly recommend WA to anyone who wants to raft.
Marty E.
This was the highlight of our trip to Colorado!
Beth G.

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