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White Water Raft Glacier National Park

When To Go Montana Rafting

Glacier National Park White Water Rafting with Glacier Guides Montana Raft!

While rafting trips are usually led from May to September, how intense the rapids are can vary a lot depending on how much snowpack is melting into the river and whether or not it has been rainy. In my opinion, the ideal time to go is the end of June when it isnt too hot and early September once the crowds in the park have cleared out a bit. Make sure to keep this in mind when planning your Glacier National Park itinerary!

What To Expect Rafting On Your Montana Whitewater Rafting Trip

Whitewater rafting in Glacier National Park is a blast and for the most part, you shouldnt have any worries when it comes to safety. Guiding companies have to have the highest standards, and you will need to sign a waiver before you are allowed to go on your trip.

After a quick talk, youll board a bus that will take you to the launch. The first third of the trip is pretty calm, and youll learn different paddling commands in order to navigate the whitewater in Montana. Youll also learn what to do if you fall off the raft and how to float safely and get back on if you need to.

Along the way, your guide will share information about the park and its history and geology. Youll hit some rapids, but dont worry! I found it pretty difficult to fall out of the raft, and I felt prepared for if I did. Eventually, youll float in a calmer spot where you can go for a swim in the cold water if you would like.

Do you have any questions after Glacier National Park rafting? Feel free to share in the comments!

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How Cold Is The Water In Glacier National Park

Though clean, Glacier waters are not necessarily drinkable. There is potential presence of a disease causing parasite. The temperature of most lakes never gets above 50 degrees Fahrenheit at the surface, so plankton growth is minimal. It is not unusual to spot details on the bottom of lakes beyond 30 feet.

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Rafting Glacier National Park

White water rafting Glacier National Park is an experience you dont want to pass up. Having trouble deciding which Glacier white water rafting trip to pick? Look no further than Glacier Raft Company. Located in West Glacier, our Flathead river rafting trips provided family and friends a bucket list experience. To help you decide, we have highlighted our top Glacier white water rafting trips for you below.

Why Raft The Kicking Horse River

Glacier Guides Montana Raft

The Kicking Horse River offers some of the biggest, best and most scenic white water rafting in all of BC. A glacial fed, Canadian Heritage River that starts high up in the Canadian Rockies, the Kicking Horse has it all. From calm and scenic to rapids and white water, we can make sure you pick the perfect rafting adventure.

With 6 trips to choose from, our Kicking Horse River Rafting overview page will give you a rundown of the different canyons we raft and tours we offer.

This rafting experience was seamless in its delivery. It was efficient, but not rushed. The guides were very proficient and competent, yet relaxed and friendly. Expectations were clear at all times. I would recommend this to anyone.

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How To Choose A Guide For Whitewater Rafting In Montana

Choosing a company for Montana rafting is one of the best ways to ensure that you will end up having a good time while you are there. While there are a number of different raft companies in the area, my personal choice is Glacier Raft Company. Not only have they been around for 45 years leading tours down the Middle Fork of the Flathead River, but they are also a green business and make extra effort to keep the park the best it can be!

When you are looking for a guide, youll want to make sure that they follow safety protocol and that they are very clear on how they are going to keep you safe and sound on your Glacier National Park rafting adventure. Safety is key when it comes to adventure sports like theseespecially when you are navigating that Montana whitewater!

White Water Rafting By Glacier National Park

Did you know you can see Glacier National Park while white water rafting? You float down the Middle Fork of the Flathead River, with Glacier National Park on one side and the almost completely wild Bob Marshall Wilderness Park on the other side.

Some of the time its a calm float down the river, with no paddling involved, so you can take in the mountains and the Tamarack trees while watching for wildlife. We only saw birds on our trip, including an eagle, but our guide Blaine said sometimes they have spotted a bear or a moose beside the water.

Then occasionally you hit some rapids to paddle through with instructions from the guide and a bit of bouncing around. This fork of the Flathead River parallels a road and train tracks, so theres no illusion that youre in the middle of nowhere, but the scenery is impressive the whole way.

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Glacier Raft Company Client Testimonial

It was our first rafting experience and now I cant wait for the next one! Our guide Shea was so knowledgeable and we felt confident in his abilities and challenged to do our part. It was a great combination of thrill and awe! Being a young breast cancer survivor and having my Step Mother and Uncle with me I felt like another challenge was overcome. Thank you GRC for the experience!

Tracy B, Phoenix, AZ

Great Bear Wilderness Multi

Whitewater Rafting Glacier National Park! June 2, 2021

Glacier Raft Company offers a premier 5-day backcountry rafting adventure in Montanas Last Best Place, The Great Bear Wilderness. The Great Bear Wilderness is home to wildflowers, wildlife, wild everything! Linking the Bob Marshall Wilderness to Glacier National Park, these remote lands combined are the largest tracts of land in the lower 48. Flowing through this rugged land is the Upper Middle Fork of the Flathead River which carves its way through glacial valleys and lush forest. This upper section of the river is one of the most protected and pristine waterways in the United States. Glacier Raft Company is proud to be the only outfitter based in Montana permitted to operate float trips on this portion of the Upper Middle Fork.

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Whitefish Montana White Water Rafting

The company we went Glacier National Park rafting with was Glacier Guides, located a short drive from Whitefish. So you could stay in Whitefish and return there or you could stay somewhere around West Glacier. Or go all in and get a package deal with the rafting company and stay at one of their lodges. They even have one you hike three days to get to if you really want to get remote.

Ill admit I was a little worried that Id be freezing cold on this trip and my extra temperature sensitive wife was even more so. It wasnt all that sunny and warm like it would be in the middle of summer. What to wear for Glacier Park rafting takes on added significance when you know the water is running cold all year. I went in September, when its at its warmest, but even then the water temperature is in the 50s. Come in June and youre rafting in fresh Montana snow melt. Brrrr!

Thankfully the Glacier Guides folks provide full wetsuits if you want them, so we were far more comfortable than I expected. Also, the time of year determines how wet youre going to get as well. The rapids were pretty tame when I went because the water was not very high. In the early summer, however, it can be gushing much harder and you might get splashed more.

Middle Fork Of The Flathead River

Bordering Glaciers southern boundary, the Middle Fork of the Flathead has scenic float sections interrupted by raging white water. The rivers headwaters are deep within the Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex, and it drains Glaciers immense southern valleys.

While the white water here cannot compete with the Grand Canyons monster rapids, the Middle Fork is a fun, splashy place where rapids named Screaming Right Turn, Jaws, and Pinball provide the fun. Its easy enough for kids and a good introductory paddle for a first-time river trip. White-water trips begin at Moccasin Creek and end in West Glacier scenic float trips begin in West Glacier and end at Blankenship.

The Middle Fork offers several river accesses easily reached along U.S. 2. Different sections are appropriate for overnights, day trips, fishing, and short floats. While a few rapids at certain water levels are rated Class IV, the river along Glaciers boundary is primarily Class II and III. No permits are required. However, all camping must be done on the south shore no camping is permitted on Glaciers shoreline. Since private property abuts some of the south shore, youll need to be knowledgeable about where you can camp.

Mountain Photography shoots photos of commercial and private rafts in Bonecrusher Rapid.

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Whitewater Rafting And Fly Fishing Resort On The Doorstep Of Glacier National Park

Glacier Raft Company is the longest-running rafting and fly fishing outfitter in Montana, located in West Glacier on the Flathead River just outside Glacier National Park. Since 1976, we’ve been safely guiding our guests on fly fishing and rafting adventures on the Flathead. Part of the Glacier Park Collection since 2022, summers are a blast on the Middle and North Forks of the Flathead.

Whether included in the compensation package or provided at a cost, housing is provided for staff.
Family Housing Available

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West Glacier Lodging: Glacier National Park Cabin Rentals And Event Venue At Glacier National Park

Great Northern Resort

Minutes from the West Entrance to Glacier National Park enjoy fully-furnished 1-, 2-, and 3-bedroom deluxe log cabins overlooking the Park. Affordable, convenient and appointed exactly for your vacation needs. Our popular special event venue is perfect for weddings, reunions, and more. Learn more about your Glacier Park lodging and special events & wedding options.

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Montana Whitewater Rafting: Half Day Trips

Our Montana whitewater rafting half-day trips are full of good times. Youll raft the scenic Middle Fork of the Flathead River, including the white-knuckle whitewater of John Stevens Canyon. This lively, invigorating river offers whitewater rafting near Glacier National Park and features numerous class II-III rapids . If youre not looking for an adrenaline-filled Montana whitewater rafting trip and just want to sit back and relax while taking in some of Glacier National Parks incredible scenery, we also offer scenic and interpretive floats to fit your style. Either way, we have something for everyone so climb aboard!

Glacier National Park Rafting

Day Trips

Whether a peaceful scenic float or a thrilling whitewater adventure, guided rafting trips on the Flathead River’s turquoise waters are sure to entertain!

Overnight Trips

One day on the river not enough? Try sleeping under Montanas star studded big skies, riverside! If you’re not a camper, check out our Star Party Float trip.

Private Adventures

Dont see quite what youre looking for? A private, custom Glacier National Park rafting adventure might be for you.

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Legendary Glacier National Park Fly Fishing: Guides Trips And Fly Shop

Montana is legendary for its fly fishing, and the Glacier National Park area is as good as it gets! Experience these crystal blue waters on guided trips on the beautiful Middle and Nork Forks of the Flathead River and extended trips into the Great Bear Wilderness on the acclaimed Upper Middle Fork. Read more about the Middle Fork Flathead River and other rivers we fish here. Glacier Raft Company is home to Glacier Anglers, with a full-service fly shop carrying rods, reels, over 250 fly patterns, accessories and clothing. Learn more about your ultimate Montana fly fishing vacation options here!

Our Trademark Montana White Water Rafting Trip: The Upper Middle Fork


Consider a multi-day river trip as an alternative to a motel, plus breakfast, lunch, and dinner are all included! Spend a night or two on the river, rafting, fishing and enjoying the river during the day, and gathering around the fire, and camping under the Big Sky at night.

Our trademark whitewater trip accesses the upper stretches of the Middle Fork of the Flathead in Montanas remote Great Bear Wilderness. Refresh yourself with this unparalleled backcountry experience. Fly or hike in to access this pristine landscape, then spend four days on the Wild and Scenic Upper Middle Fork which boasts class II-IV whitewater and matchless trout fishing.

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Alberton Gorge Clark Fork River

The Clark Fork River stretches for over 280 miles through southwest Montana. This surging river has undergone extensive rehabilitation over the past decade. Today, the Clark Fork features crystal-clear waters that are popular for fly fishing.

The river runs through the heart of the University of Montana campus in Missoula â one of Montana’s best cities.

Activities like fishing and flatwater tubing take place along much of the river’s length. The Clark Fork only has a relatively small portion of white water. Whenever someone mentions rafting on the Clark Fork, they are talking about the Class III rapids in Alberton Gorge.

Thirty-five miles downriver from Missoula, Alberton Gorge has adrenaline-inducing rapids between scenic sections of flatwater. Several commercial outfitters based out of Missoula run trips down this section of the river. Trip lengths vary between half- and full-day adventures.

Members of the public have several options for launching into Alberton Gorge. The town of Alberton, itself, is a good access point, though most boaters head for the Cyr Bridge.

The gorge features several Class III rapids that most intermediate paddlers should have a blast navigating. Two of the most common take-outs on the river are at the Trakio or Forest Grove boat ramps.

Choose Your White Water Rafting Adventure In Golden Bc

We know everyone’s desired level of excitement is different. Whether its stepping out of your comfort zone, an annual raft trip, a family vacation or a new thrill to experience, Glacier Raft Company offers a variety of white water rafting adventures in Golden, BC to meet your expectations.

Full Day

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Youll Have A Full Day Of Excitement

Be active all day long! Going straight from rafting to our aerial adventure course will leave no time for anyone in the family to get bored. The splashy whitewater rafting will get everyones adrenaline going, and working through our high ropes course will keep it going. Kids who arent a fan of heights will enjoy racing through the inflatable obstacle courses!

Whitewater Raft Guides In West Glacier Montana

Colorado white water rafting

The Flathead River and Glacier National Park access gives our team everything Montana has to offer!

up to $10.00 / hour + tips
Start Date:
Starts in 4 months.

Glacier Raft Company are seeking Whitewater Guides to join our awesome team for the summer season. We are based out of West Glacier, Montana and as Montana’s longest continually operating raft company, we have been providing our guests with iconic and unforgettable experiences since the 1970’s.

Our guide roles generally start between May and June and end in August and September. We are proud to offer free employee housing, laundry, and internet as well as some complimentary meals. Whitewater Guiding experience preferred, but not required. Positions are dependent upon completion of guide school, on the job training, and First Aid/CPR and swift water rescue certifications.

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North Fork Of Flathead Multi

Experience a 4 day trip down the North Fork of the Flathead River with the best guides from Glacier Raft Company. Though this river is relatively tamed, you can still find some action with class I or class II rapids. The North Fork is known for its majestic beauty and solitude. The winding river, clear water, is home to some spectacular fishing holes. At the end of each day, camp will be set up along the riverbank. Chefs will cook you a hearty meal that will fill you up. Relax and watch as the stars fill up the big sky.

The Best National Parks For Rafting

Visitation to Americas national parks isnt expected to slow down anytime soon. But while crowds flock to iconic sites like Half Dome, Going to the Sun Road, and the South Rim of Grand Canyon, theres a secret that flows through these iconic landscapesmany of our most popular national parks are great places for whitewater rafting. From the Appalachians to Alaska, and many places in-between, find the park that piques your interest, and experience Americas Best Idea while floating down a river.

1) Grand Canyon National Park Colorado River, Arizona

Grand Canyon rafting is the Holy Grail of whitewater trips inside of our national parks. Once you push off from the bank, you kiss civilization good-bye and travel through a geologic storybook that reveals the beginnings of time, not to mention some of the most notorious rapids in North America. But its not just the epic whitewater that makes the 280-mile trip from Lees Ferry to Pearce Ferry a once-in-a-lifetime journey. The canyon is a treasure trove of cool historical sites, mind-blowing geology, and unforgettable side hikes that will leave a lasting impression.

2) Glacier National Park Middle Fork of the Flathead River, Montana
3) New River Gorge National Park and Preserve
4) Gates of the Arctic National Park Noatak River, Alaska
5) Yosemite National Park Merced River, California
6) Big Bend National Park Rio Grande, Texas
7) Canyonlands National Park Colorado River, Utah

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