Raft the Stillwater River Near Red Lodge with Adventure Whitewater
Experience big water fun and stunning scenery with this rafting company northeast of Yellowstone National Park.
There’s so many reasons to basecamp your Yellowstone vacation out of the park’s less-used Northeast Entrance. For one, quick access to Lamar Valley, known as “America’s Serengeti” filled with wildlife. Then, there’s the Beartooth Highway, a stunning high alpine road that will bring you to one of Montana’s most charming towns: Red Lodge. And of course, there’s the rafting. When you basecamp out of the Northeast Entrance, you can raft one of the most underrated rivers in the state: the Stillwater.
Book a trip with Adventure Whitewater, a boutique rafting company that specializes in small trips that give you that intimate, guided trip experience thanks to its staff’s personal touches. The snowmelt fed, free flowing Stillwater River runs through gorgeous scenery in the Absaroka-Beartooth Mountains without the impedance of any dams. This means that the river’s personality changes with the season. Early in the year, when the river is running higher and faster, you’ll get a rollicking adventure. In late summer, when the water level is lower, the trip will be slower but still provide plenty of thrills. Trips are usually suitable for ages 5 and up, water conditions permitting.
Adventure Whitewater runs two half-day trips per day, so you can experience an adrenaline-fueled adventure through some of the state’s most beautiful landscapes and still have half a day to explore Red Lodge, drive Beartooth Highway or whatever else is on your agenda. Trips meet at a private launch 40 minutes north of Red Lodge near Absarokee, Montana. The drive to get to the launch itself is gorgeous and that’s only the beginning. The time on the Stillwater depends on how fast the water is flowing, but you can expect to spend 2-3 hours riding hydraulics and big waves, with several good drops. Wildlife like deer, moose, bears and birds are often spotted from the river and a break halfway through gives you the chance to get out and experience the scenery.
When the water level drops on the Stillwater, sometime in mid-to-late August usually, Adventure Whitewater moves its trips to the Yellowstone River for the remainder of the rafting season. It’s a different experience but equally stunning. You’ll find incredible scenery, some whitewater and even opportunities to jump in and cool off while floating next to the rafts. Trips still meet at the private launch near Absarokee and you’ll be transported to the Yellowstone River by bus.
Your experience with Adventure Whitewater, which has been around since 1993, starts the moment you send a booking inquiry. The company doesn’t do any online bookings, which they consider impersonal. Instead, a member of their team will reach out by phone to set up your trip, answer any questions and make sure you’re prepared for your epic adventure. Then, when you get to the launch, the company’s personable and entertaining guides will take over, giving you an experience you’ll never forget while guiding you safely down the river.
Learn more and book your trip at adventurewhitewater.com, or call 1-406-446-3061, or toll-free at 1-800-897-3061.