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Do What Floats
Your Boat

The Grand Valley is best known for the Colorado National Monument as well as its incredible network of singletrack trails, but the area also boasts some of the best access to water sports in the Centennial State. Home to the confluence of the Colorado River and Gunnison River, the “String of Pearls”, and over 300 lakes on the Grand Mesa; whether your preferred means of locomotion is a SUP, canoe, kayak or raft, there’s a body of water for you in Mesa County!

Where to
Paddle

There are plenty of places in the Grand Valley that offer you a chance to get out on the water, from still waters to mellow currents.

River Park Bend Access

Corn Lake State Park Access

Redlands Parkway Access

Loma Access

Palisade
Clifton
Grand Junction
Fruita
Loma

The Butterfly Pond & Riverfront Park at Los Colonias

2735 Riverside Pkwy, Grand Junction, CO 81501
*The ideal place to learn and practice the fundamentals of SUP with assistance of Grand Junction Adventures.

James M. Robb – Colorado River State Park

*The park consists of five sections of beautiful riverfront along a 35-mile stretch of the Colorado River; flowing through the Greater Grand Junction Area from Island Acres in the east, through Corn Lake, the Colorado River Wildlife Area, Connected Lakes and down river to Fruita.

The Grand Mesa

via I-70 E and CO-65 N
*With over 300 lakes, some easily accessible off the highway and others more remote, the Grand Mesa beckons to be explored.

The Colorado River in Horsethief Canyon

*With an abundance of wildlife, the Ruby-Horsethief section of the Colorado River runs through beautiful red rock canyons and is mostly flat water with sections of Class 1 and 2 rapids. The renowned stretch from Loma, Colorado, to Westwater, Utah, is 25-miles.

Highline Lake State Park

1800 11 8/10 Rd, Loma, CO 81524
*A large swim beach makes for a family-friendly environment where you can SUP and watch your kiddos play.

Colorado River (Palisade to Loma)

As you paddle through the Grand Valley the Lower Colorado picks up a bit more water at the confluence of the Gunnison River. Wide and flat, this is a pleasant float with nice scenery and plenty of waterfowl. Along the way, keep an eye out for Blue Heron, Canadian Geese and Bald Eagles. Float times vary with changing conditions but average between 1 – 4 hours depending on the section of river.

Access to Access

  • River Bend Park to Corn Lake State Park – 10 miles
  • Corn Lake State Park to Las Colonias – 5 miles
  • Las Colonias to Redlands Parkway aka “The Town Run” – 5 miles
  • Redlands Parkway to Loma – 10 miles

Ruby-Horsethief Canyon

  • Loma Boat Ramp to Westwater
  • 25.3 Miles
  • Class 1

This stretch is perfect for those who are just looking to enjoy the beautiful scenery while relaxing to the hypnotic roll of the mild current. This trip can be done in one full – but long – day of rafting, but a night of camping is the perfect overnight trip (camping reservations required).

Westwater Canyon

  • 17.7 Miles
  • Class 3 & 4

45-minutes west of Grand Junction is an adrenaline pumping, awe-inspiring canyon of white water with famous sections like “Sock-it-to-me” and “Skull Rapid”; and be sure to uphold tradition by giving the “Good Luck Wall” a smooch.

Boater Checklist & Safety

Boater's Checklist

  • Food & Water
  • Spare Paddle
  • Life Jacket
  • Map / GPS
  • Sunscreen
  • First Aid Kit
  • Whistle or Signaling Device
  • Boat Repair Kit
  • Bilge Pump or Bailer (if applicable)
  • Extra Clothing in a Dry Bag
  • Are Fire Bans Currently in Place?
  • Does your Float Require a Permit?

Boater Safety

  • Know the Flows
  • Know your Boat
  • Know your Ability & Limits
  • Wear a life jacket
  • If unfamiliar with a particular river or stretch of water, consider taking a guided trip with a licensed outfitter or going with an experienced boater

Leave No Trace River Principles

  • Plan ahead and prepare
  • Travel and camp on durable surfaces
  • Dispose of waste properly
  • Leave what you find
  • Minimize campfire impacts
  • Respect wildlife
  • Be considerate of other boaters and visitors

Upcoming Events

22 April 2024
5:00 pm - 6:45 pm
Colorado Mesa University; Meyer Ballroom in the University Center, 1100 North Ave, Grand Junction, CO 81501
18 May 2024

Etiquette on the River

Recreating on our waters comes with responsibility.

Always dispose of waste and trash properly

Respect private property

Be courteous of others

Be mindful of anglers and other river users

Sound travels on water - please keep yours to a minimum

Respect Wildlife

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