My family of 4, (Mother, Father and 2 boys - 11 and 13 years old) took a 6 day rafting trip with Hughes River Expeditions down the middle fork of the Salmon in July 2013. We have been on several rafting trips - The Colorado river - through the Grand Canyon (before the kids). IF YOU WANT THE BEST WHITEWATER/HIKING TRIP OF YOUR LIFE, YOU MUST TRY THE COLORADO! With the kids, we have been on 3 and 4 day trips, on the Rogue and Klamath rivers. Both were excellent. For the 3 rivers I mentioned, we went with O.A.R.S. They were excellent; experienced and entertaining. We didn't go with OARS on the Salmon because, for some reason, they don't offer transportation back to town:( Looking for another rafting company, I came across Hughes. They really know the Salmon River and their guides are die hard river rats. I felt that our lives were in the best hands. They also cater very well to the fly fisherman...moving the raft a little this way or that to get the best line lie. Also, they set up the tents themselves....OARS, has you set up your own tents. Food was great. One small disappointment with Hughes is that the guides are not as entertaining as the OARS guides. The middle fork is LONG...sometimes you are rafting for 6 hours a day...a little entertainment....jokes, riddles, a spontaneous water fight is welcome. At camp, the OARS guides would find something entertaining for the kids to do. The side trips...hiking...maybe are just not exciting on the Salmon...the hiking is to just 'another miners' abandoned shack'. Although on our other trips OARS made boring side hikes interesting by such things as a 'warriors bravery contest' and some Indian mythology talks. (There were no boring side hikes on the Colorado) The Salmon river was beautiful and quite clear (at least for the first few days). The fly fishing was very good until the river turned muddy. The whitewater was challenging, especially if you got into the individual kayaks. The weather can change quickly however, it was nice the whole time we were on our trip. The scenery is beautiful....but again, not as awe inspiring as the Colorado!
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