How much does a Grand Canyon trip cost?
With 12 different Grand Canyon rafting NPS concessionaires, it can be hard to evaluate all of them due to the various trip options. Trip prices vary significantly due to trip length, boat type, and section. When we first started on this blogpost our goal was to have every trip from every company priced out. This task proved daunting as there are so many different trip options with the estimated pricing guide topping 75 different price points, which would probably cause further confusion for trip researchers. To alleviate this, we list specific prices per company for Full Canyon trips, ending at Whitmore Wash, Diamond Creek, or Pearce Ferry.
Grand Canyon Trip Lengths
Commercial Grand Canyon trips vary from just 3 days to up to 18 days long. Other sections of the Colorado River, such as the Horseshoe Bend section, upstream of Lee’s Ferry, offer shorter one-day trips. Full Canyon trips, which all start at Lee’s Ferry and takeout at Whitmore Wash or below, are as short as 6 days and as long as 18 days.
Understanding the Different Trip Sections
Most companies categorize Grand Canyon sections by Full, Upper, and Lower. A Full Canyon trip means Lee’s Ferry to downstream of Phantom Ranch, ending at Whitmore Wash, Diamond Creek, or Pearce Ferry. Upper Canyon means Lee’s Ferry to Phantom Ranch. A Lower Canyon means Phantom Ranch to Whitmore Wash, Diamond Creek, or Pearce Ferry. Some companies even run a trip from Whitmore Wash to Pearce Ferry, which you could summarize as a Lower Lower.
Lee’s Ferry: River Mile 0.00
Whitmore Wash: River Mile 188
Diamond Creek: River Mile 226
Pearce Ferry: 280
The Grand Canyon Boat Options
The Grand Canyon is unique in that there are many different boat options for you to choose from. There are motor rigs, which are very large inflatable rafts with a motor on them made famous by Georgie White. These run the Grand Canyon the fastest as they cover many miles each day. Because of the shorter time frame and the ability to put more passengers on a single boat, these tend to be more affordable. Then there are oar boats which are the more traditional multi-day rafting setup with a guide rowing with a few passengers up front. Because they are under human power, they make fewer miles per day compared to motor rigs, and therefore, will have longer trips. Blended on oar boat trips, you’ll find paddleboats, which are rafts paddled together as a team under a guides direction. Finally, you’ll find companies running dories, which are wooden, hand-built boats with a lengthy history on the Grand Canyon. Some companies run all dory trips without any other boat type and others will run a blend of dories, paddleboats and oarboats.
2024 Full Grand Canyon Trip Cost by Company
***Abbreviation key: LF = Lee’s Ferry. WW = Whitmore Wash. DC = Diamond Creek. PF = Pearce Ferry***
We have done our best with trip accuracy. If we have listed an incorrect price, trip type or trip length, please leave a comment to alert us and we will look into it. Last updated 11/27/23