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best time to see Narrows and raft grand canyon

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best time to see Narrows and raft grand canyon

I'm trying to pick dates for our trip right now. I need to see the narrows cause I missed it last time due to high waters and don't want that happening again (also want to see subway). Some of us will be rafting the grand canyon on the lower half of the river and really want either green or blue water (not muddy brown) but want the rapids to still be exciting and not too calm. I'd really like to be able to see the shaft of light in upper antelope canyon too. We'll stop off at Bryce, Mesa Verde, the Wave hopefully, and the Glen Canyon Dam too.

So when do you guys think is the best time for us to do our trip? FYI, I imagine that we should start at Zion and then end at the GC rafting otherwise the rafters will end up being disappointed with the rest of the trip after rafting the GC (they have very high standards).

Thanks.

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Mesa
Mesa
Central Arizona, AZ
Sedona, AZ
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1. Re: best time to see Narrows and raft grand canyon

If you are trying to do this trip this year, you should be looking at late august or early September. Assuming that you have at least a couple of weeks for this trip. Getting a reservation and planning the GC raft trip will be most critical. The Lower Canyon trip will require a rigorous 9 mile hike down into the canyon, overnight at Phantom Ranch and then at least 4 more days rafting out of the canyon. A night at the South Rim will probably be required on the front end too.

Sorry, but you can't choose the color of the Colorado River. It will be what it will be. When we did our full canyon trip a few years ago in August, the upper canyon was blue green, but once we joined the Little C it was like chocolate milk. Normally conditions would have been the opposite, but monsoonal rains made the difference.

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2. Re: best time to see Narrows and raft grand canyon

I was planning the trip for next year and can go anytime. Is August and Sept high flash flood risk?

Thanks.

Salt Lake City, Utah
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3. Re: best time to see Narrows and raft grand canyon

If you want guaranteed Narrows then you should plan later in the summer, but since July and August are high flash flood months, then Sept or October would be better to avoid them.

I don't think the river through the canyon ever gets too low. They release the water from Lake Powell fairly regularly for the power production, so even Sept should be good for the rapids. (though I have no actual experience there, just going on what I have heard).

Shaft of light in Antelope is seen at mid day during the warmer months. Again not sure when it disappears for the winter, but you should be okay there in Aug through Oct.

I'd say sept would be your best bet to get it all.

Don't assume that rafting the Grand canyon will be more spectacular than any of the rest. Just different. Though if you think it will be the highlight it might be best to end with it.

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4. Re: best time to see Narrows and raft grand canyon

I didn't think the size of the rapids would make it the highlight. I just thought the scenery would be. Sept it is for our trip then. Thanks guys.

Sedona, AZ
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5. Re: best time to see Narrows and raft grand canyon

Agreed. The size of the rapids in GC should not be an issue at all.

6. Re: best time to see Narrows and raft grand canyon

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