Moab Area Boating

The Colorado River in the Moab area is famous for its whitewater. Below Moab, Cataract Canyon offers some of America's best rapids. Above town, Westwater Canyon has whitewater well suited for more moderate family rafting adventures.

Many people don't realize there is a long flatwater stretch on the Colorado below Moab, before the river plunges into Cataract. The flatwater section is ideal for kayaks, canoes and jet boats. Prop boats sometimes operate on the river, usually without any problem. Conditions may be marginal for that type of craft during low water years.

Several companies offer shuttles for canoes and kayakers. You can paddle downstream as far as the confluence of the Green and Colorado Rivers and then have a jet boat haul you back to Moab. The flatwater stretch is long enough for multi-day adventures. (Remember, you need a permit from Canyonlands National Park for overnight stays within the park boundaries.)

Some people boat down the Green River (from the town of Green River, Utah) to the confluence and then come up the Colorado River to Moab. That's a trip of 184 miles, all flatwater. Those rivers go through some amazing wilderness country. Canoes and kayaks make the trip via a shuttle from the confluence up to Moab.

An organized "Friendship Cruise" runs down the Green and up the Colorado over Memorial Day weekend most years. The cruise offers support for boaters making the long trip. The rivers are high because of runoff at that time of year and prop boats successfully make the trip. If river levels are low the cruise is not held that year.

Many people visiting the Moab area also visit Lake Powell, which is a paradise for boating and water sports.

Canoes, kayaks and other small boats can operate on Kens Lake, and canoes are useful when fishing the small lakes in the La Sal Mountains east of Moab.

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