Paddle through prehistoric paradise.
Lee's Ferry marks the flattened transition between what remains of Glen Canyon (the rest of it is now underneath Lake Powell), and Marble Canyon, both upriver heralds of their mighty sibling, The Grand Canyon.
It is here that Grand Canyon float trips embark, a journey that requires a permit or a seat on one of the authorized outfitters' rafts or in one of their kayaks.
It is also the place where a quieter, less-publicized experience begins.
Your motorboat trip upriver will be from a local expert, a guide that knows the river. You'll glide through 15.5 miles of gorgeous canyon walls, past wild horses and Horseshoe Bend.
You will be able to see the Glen Canyon Dam from about 0.5 miles away from its southern face, then be dropped off at "Kayak Beach", a sandy spot that has plenty of room to stage your equipment before paddling downstream. There are composting toilets and campgrounds along the river, available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Minimum participation per trip is 2, maximum only based on boat availability. Call to inquire about availability prior to payment: 435.680.5818
A few important considerations:
- Plan ahead. After paying, specify your preference for SUP, kayak, or packraft. We will do our best to accommodate each request. That said, inflatable solutions afford the best portability. Plan to take 15 minutes for gear setup before you get on the boat! Plan to be on the boat ramp 45 minutes prior to departure.
- Wear layers. Be prepared for the weather, based on the season. Water temps are in the high 40s to low 50s, year-round.
- Bring plenty of water. We recommend approximately 4 liters or one gallon per person. A water filter would be a great backup, and we sell some great travel filters.
- Sunscreen. We recommend reef- and waterway-safe Beyond Coastal or Stream to Sea, both of which we stock.
- Headwear. Keep that skull in the shade!
- Bring enough snacks/food for a 4-6 hour experience. You'll probably want to stop and take photos, sketch, write, explore one of the many hikes along the river, or just take in the majesty of the space. Those activities take energy and time. Have fuel for your machine - that's YOU.
- Dry bags. Dig sells some great dry bags, some for your phone, some are coolers, some are backpack-style, some are large enough for your sleeping bag, pillow, tent, and ground pad. Make sure your dry bag works and is in good condition.
- If you are planning to camp out, park your vehicle in the overnight lot. If you are planning to be off the river on the same day, park in the Ferry parking lot near the ramp. National Recreation Area parking fees apply; there is a kiosk about 4.5 miles from Lee's Ferry where you may purchase a short-term or long-term pass.
- Pack out your trash. Bring a small bag, preferably reusable, for rubbish.
- Leave rocks and any artifacts you may encounter alone. Leave the petroglyphs alone. Take pictures, make memories.
- If planning a 1-day trip, leave the boat ramp as early as possible. We recommend 7:30am at the latest. Winds tend to get stronger in the early to mid-afternoon, and they tend to blow upriver, making an afternoon return to the Ferry ramp challenging.
- If planning a multi-day trip, you may opt to have your boat guide stop and let you stash your camping gear, then continue on to Kayak Beach. You will paddle everything out that you bring in, so plan accordingly and pack what you need, but pack as light of a load as you can.
- Rental extensions for kayaks, packrafts, and paddleboards are $50/day for this trip. Arrangements will be made with Dig Paddlesports for your return time.
- Do not put your kayak or other vessel in any body of water, other than Lake Powell, after your river trip. The Quagga Mussel may have hitched a ride on your kayak. Gear needs to be rinsed and dried thoroughly, or cleaned by a park pressure washer, and get a certificate of decontamination before coming back to a non-contaminated Utah waterway.
- Your boat pilot is a licensed river guide, but this is a non-guided paddling experience. We love this trip, and one or more Dig team members may choose to also pay for passage upriver and paddle with your group, but we do not charge for transportation to Lee's Ferry, nor do we charge to accompany any group on the river.
- There are great restaurants in Page (Bonkers) and Kanab (Escobar's), also the food at Jacob Lake Lodge isn't bad. If you want to grab a meal on your way back to Hurricane, UT, there are some options.
- The fastest way to Lee's Ferry from Hurricane or St. George, UT is via Fredonia, AZ and then over 89-A past Jacob Lake Lodge and on to Vermilion Cliffs.
- A beautiful route that takes more time, but may be necessary due to road closures, is to take the road from Hurricane to Fredonia, then turn left toward Kanab. From there, go to Page, AZ and on to Marble Canyon and Lee's Ferry. This route adds at least 45 minutes to your drive, but it is spectacular and gives you the opportunity to drive over the river near the Glen Canyon Dam, as well as the parking area (fee required) for Horseshoe Bend. When you have time, the .75-mile walk to the rim of the canyon is worth it.
- Any questions? Reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org