Interested in kayaking Idaho’s Middle Fork of the Salmon River in your own kayak with camping, meals and raft support from Adventure Sun Valley?
One possibility that’s available July through September (even if you’re a novice boater) is to simply paddle along on any of our milder whitewater raft trips, as described on our Summer Rafting page.
A second possibility is to join us in the spring for a specialized kayak support raft trip (launches depart May 30, June 8, 17, or 26).
June is a special time on the Middle Fork, as spring is in full bloom in the valleys, snows are receding in the high country and the rivers are at their peak levels.
These specialized June trips differ slightly from our Summer trips, making them even more appealing to experienced hard boaters: longer hours on the water each day to maximize time at play spots, as well as time to interact with or even pick up a few tips from our lead guide and your fellow boaters. Whenever feasible, boaters will have opportunities to break into groups based on ability and goals, allowing some to keep up a faster descent, others to maximize play, and still others to develop their boating skills.
If you’ve always wanted to experience the Middle Fork’s June water levels, but don’t think you have the required skill level we describe below, give us a call anyway, as we usually have room for a limited number of raft riders or “developing” paddlers who want the option of getting out of their kayaks and hitching a ride on a raft through some of the rapids.
As with all our river trips, we take care of all logistics, camping and cooking equipment, hauling of gear, unbelievable meals, and all camp work. In fact, camp will be all set up and waiting each day as you get off the river & your only job is to focus on your vacation!
Be sure to check out our Camping & Dining page to read more about our “pampered camping” and see our Summer Rafting page for a description of the Middle Fork’s many other attractions.
Reserve a spot today. Then, simply show up with your kayak and clothes for the wilderness whitewater kayaking adventure of a lifetime!
Will Your Skill Level Match the Middle Fork?
If you are comfortable on the Lower Yough, the Cheat or New at lower levels, the Ocoee, Wenatchee or South Fork of the American, Little Falls or Mathers Gorge of the Potomac at medium flows – if you have a reliable river roll and are very comfortable running Class III water – you will find the Middle Fork at June flows enjoyable. If not, try coming with us in summer, when conditions are more mellow.
The Middle Fork is typical of a Western River. The upper section starts as a boisterous mountain stream with continuous gradient of over 50 feet per mile. Unlike Eastern rivers that may have a heinous drop requiring solid boat control and a pool at the bottom, the Middle Fork in spring is a continuous Class II wave train with forgiving features. A few Class III rapids with must-miss holes are interspersed. In every case, our experienced guides will provide you with a strong lead.
The middle section sees the river mellow out a bit. The gradient decreases and the river widens out. A few signature rapids, many with great surfing spots, appear. For the most part however, you can drift in your boat with an occasional paddle stroke to change your view of the scenery.
As the Lower Middle Fork enters Impassable Canyon (so named because the backpacking trail that parallels the river leaves at this point) the river becomes more constricted in the manner of many desert river canyons. Many drops are not formed by gradient, but by constriction. Powerful eddy lines and fun reactionary waves dominate the river. As always, our guides will be there to provide you with a strong lead.