Southwest Colorado White Water

Animas River


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Difficulty Level

animas river overview

Beginning high in the San Juan Mountains, the Upper Animas starts off as one of the best class IV-V runs the state. Milder and more accessible, the Lower Animas offers a variety of shorter trips closer to Durango.

• Difficulty: Class II-V (What does this mean?)
• Season: May – June

Animas River Rafting Trips:

Trip Lengths: 1/4, Half, Full, 2 & 3 Day (Upper & Lower)
Outfitter: Mild to Wild Rafting
Learn More: ~ 800.567.6745

Wilderness Aware Rafting does not operate trips on the Animas River. Information regarding the Animas River on this website is strictly informational. Please click here for a complete list of trips that we offer, or use the search filter to the left. Thanks!

animas river sections

Animas River Rafting Sections:

Upper Animas River
Class IV-V
A fast-paced, continuous and highly challenging section set against the fantastic scenery of San Juan Mountains.

Lower Animas River
Class II-III
A mild whitewater section that is fun and splashy. Close proximity to Durango with gorgeous mountain views.


  • Lydia filled us with confidence. She was skilled and knowledgeable and explained each set of rapids so we knew what to expect. She was great company and we had the best experience. She was brilliant.

    Dwight W. Rafter
  • I cannot wait to come back! Also loved how funny all the guides were. It was the most I’ve seen my sister laugh in a long time! Thank you so much for this amazing experience.

    Lexi R. Rafter
  • I spent several days researching various rafting options and after speaking w/your team was sold. We were not disappointed-the trip is spectacular and our guide Sean was informative, lively professional and entertaining.

    Lauren C. Rafter


Information for Animas River Self-Guided Boaters:

The Animas River is in the San Juan National Forest and is managed by the U.S. Forest Service.

  • Boating Permit Required: NO
  • Permit Details: No fee of any kind is required to float the river within the National Forest on public lands.
  • River Manager: US Forest Service – Columbine Ranger District
    367 Pearl Street, Po Box 439, Bayfield, CO 81122
    970.884.1404 ~

Shuttles: If shuttle service is available, information is listed under the specific section page.

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