Raft Types: Motor & Non-Motor

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Motorized Raft

Motor trips are the most popular of all trip types. There are more motor trip launches than any other combined, among all of the outfitters. Typical launches include 2 rafts, and group sizes between 22-28 depending on the outfitter. There are upper, lower, western and full canyon trips offered on motor rafts. Some full canyon trips continue straight through with the same group of passengers, while others will make a pit-stop to let off upper canyon passengers, and allow for lower canyon trip passengers to join the group for the rest of the trip.

  • Most popular of all raft types, offered by 11 of 15 outfitters
  • Most comfortable seating positions of all raft types and great for guests who seek a sense of security with a larger raft type
  • Covers more distance per day compared to non-motor trips
  • Action packed trips – will see more in a day and get form one attraction to another more frequently compared to non-motor
  • Popular choice for those looking to see more of the canyon while having ample time for off raft exploration
  • Largest percentage of people choose this raft type
  • Popular choice for any age especially children/teens who seek more activities
  • Popular choice for any age especially children/teens who seek more activities Minimum 8 years old
  • Group sizes between 12-14 per raft, 2 raft maximum/trip
  • Rafts may vary slightly from sample image

Non-Motor Rafting Adventure

Oar Raft Trip

  • Popular rafting type, offered by 12 of 15 outfitters
  • Smaller more agile raft type, allows passengers to ‘feel’ more of the rapids

Paddle Raft Trip

  • Limited rafting type option, offered by 4 of 15 outfitters
  • Slower paced more intimate experience during calm waters

Hybrid Raft Trip

  • Limited rafting type option, offered by 4 of 15 outfitters
  • Usually 4 oar rafts and 1 paddle raft to be used on rotation among passengers. One outfitter includes inflatable kayaks

Dory Raft Trip

  • Limited rafting type, offered by 5 of 15 outfitters
  • Smaller more agile raft type, allows passengers to ‘feel’ more of the rapids
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Oar raft trips are the second most popular of all raft types. Consisting of 5 passengers in total, these rafts are powered and navigated by your guide, however if you are interested in rowing in between rapids and at their discretion, you are welcome to grab the oars. A typical oar trip will consist of 5-6 rafts or floatilla. Oar trips travel at speed of the river 3-4 mph, more slowly and essentially doubling the trip duration when compared to a motorized trip. This slower pace offers a great opportunity for an intimate experience with the river while listening to your guide's extensive knowledge of the Grand Canyon. There are upper, lower, western and full canyon trips offered on motor rafts. Some full canyon trips continue straight through with the same group of passengers, while others will make a pit-stop to let off upper canyon passengers, and allow for lower canyon trip passengers to join the group for the rest of the trip.

  • Popular rafting type, offered by 12 of 15 outfitters
  • Smaller more agile raft type, allows passengers to ‘feel’ more of the rapids
  • Rowed by guide, however at times passengers may row between rapids, during calmer waters
  • Rowing is not guaranteed, and at the discretion of the guide or trip leader.
  • In addition to oar raft, some trips include a dory boat to be used on rotation
  • Slower paced, more relaxed experience while on the raft in calmer waters
  • Great opportunity to listen to your guide’s extensive knowledge of the Grand Canyon while on raft
  • Minimum 10-12 years old – most outfitters
  • Group size between 18-24 dependent on what time of year
  • Rafts may vary slightly from sample image

Paddle raft trips are high in demand and low in supply as only 4 of 15 outfitters offer them. Your guide sits at the back and commands the team of 6-8 paddlers, who are digging into the water full time. These trips are recommended for those with multi-day paddle experience under their belt as many days in succession can become tiresome. A typical paddle trip will consist of 5-6 rafts or floatilla. Paddle trips travel at speed of the river 3-4 mph, more slowly and essentially doubling the trip duration when compared to a motorized trip. This slower pace offers a great opportunity for an intimate experience with the river while listening to your guide's extensive knowledge of the Grand Canyon. There are upper, lower, western and full canyon trips offered on motor rafts. Some full canyon trips continue straight through with the same group of passengers, while others will make a pit-stop to let off upper canyon passengers, and allow for lower canyon trip passengers to join the group for the rest of the trip.

  • Limited rafting type option, offered by 4 of 15 outfitters
  • Slower paced more intimate experience during calm waters
  • Great for those looking for a more physically demanding adventure while on raft
  • Great opportunity to listen to your guide’s extensive knowledge of the Grand Canyon while on raft
  • Smallest raft type, very agile and allows passengers to ‘feel’ more of the rapids
  • Passengers paddle full time for days in succession and can cause muscle fatigue.
  • Recommended for those with previous multi-day paddle experience.
  • Minimum 12-16 years old - most outfitters
  • Group size between 18-24 dependent on what time of year
  • Rafts may vary slightly from sample image

Hybrid raft trips are high in demand and low in supply as only 4 of 15 outfitters offer them. A typical hybrid trip will consist of 5-6 Oar raft and 1 Paddle raft to be used on rotation among the passengers. This trip makes for a great balance between relaxing in an Oar raft and digging into the water while in the Paddle raft. Hybrid trips travel at speed of the river 3-4 mph, more slowly and essentially doubling the trip duration when compared to a motorized trip. This slower pace offers a great opportunity for an intimate experience with the river while listening to your guide's extensive knowledge of the Grand Canyon. There are upper, lower, western and full canyon trips offered on motor rafts. Some full canyon trips continue straight through with the same group of passengers, while others will make a pit-stop to let off upper canyon passengers, and allow for lower canyon trip passengers to join the group for the rest of the trip.

  • Limited rafting type option, offered by 4 of 15 outfitters
  • Usually 4 oar rafts and 1 paddle raft to be used on rotation among passengers. One outfitter includes inflatable kayaks
  • No motor rafts are part of the flotilla on a hybrid raft trip
  • Slower paced more intimate experience while on the raft in calmer waters
  • Popular choice for adventurous individuals and families alike
  • Popular option for those wanting a more physical experience while on raft
  • Great opportunity to listen to your guide’s extensive knowledge of the Grand Canyon while on raft
  • Minimum 12 years old - most outfitters
  • Group size between 18-24 dependent on what time of year
  • Rafts may vary slightly from sample image

Dory boat trips are offered by 5 of 15 outfitters offer them. Consisting of 5 passengers in total, these rafts are powered and navigated by your guide. Often times Dory boats will be added to Oar trips making for a great opportunity to experience both vessels on the same trip. Dory trips travel at speed of the river 3-4 mph, more slowly and essentially doubling the trip duration when compared to a motorized trip. This slower pace offers a great opportunity for an intimate experience with the river while listening to your guide's extensive knowledge of the Grand Canyon. There are upper, lower, western and full canyon trips offered on motor rafts. Some full canyon trips continue straight through with the same group of passengers, while others will make a pit-stop to let off upper canyon passengers, and allow for lower canyon trip passengers to join the group for the rest of the trip.

  • Limited rafting type, offered by 5 of 15 outfitters
  • Smaller more agile raft type, allows passengers to ‘feel’ more of the rapids
  • Rowed by guide, however at times passengers may row between rapids, during calmer waters - Rowing is not guaranteed, and at the discretion of the guide or trip leader.
  • Rigid boats made of hard wood
  • Travels slightly faster when compared to oar rafts
  • Faster response in rapids when compared to inflated rafts
  • Slower paced, more intimate experience while on Dory
  • Great opportunity to listen to your guide’s extensive knowledge of the Grand Canyon while on the river
  • Minimum 10-12 years old – most outfitters
  • Group size between 18-24 dependent on what time of year
  • Rafts may vary slightly from sample image