Float the Famed Snake River

Floating the Famed Snake River in Jackson Hole Offers a Fresh Perspective

The Snake River winds itself through much of the Pacific Northwest of the United States including the Jackson Hole Valley. Why not follow its path during your stay to see the spectacular sites from its perspective?

Float Trips through Grand Teton National Park are something everyone should have (and knock off) their bucket list. Spring Creek Ranch will set you up with the float trip that’s right for you and your family.

Snake River Whitewater Rafting Float Trips

Barker-Ewing Whitewater Rafting - Drenched but smiling!

Barker-Ewing Whitewater Rafting - Drenched but smiling! Photo: Barker-Ewing


The Snake River is internationally known as one of the best and most consistent white water adventures in North America.

Running through rapids with names like the Big Kahuna, Three Oar Deal, the California Curl, Taco Roll, and Lunch Counter, you know that you are in for a top-notch adventure.

On a scale from I-VI, the rapids on the Snake River are class II-III during normal water flows and are termed, “pool and drop,” which means they are spaced out with calm water sections in between.

You don’t need any experience to whitewater raft and it’s a great activity for most people. Usually the minimum age is six years old, but can change with varying river conditions. Spring Creek Ranch representatives will set you up with the right trip and may even recount some of their own tales from firsthand experience.

Whitewater Rafting Float Trip Essentials

Spring Creek’s qualified whitewater rafting outfitters provide type V personal floatation devices (PFD’s), or “life jackets,” and shuttles to and from the float. You should dress in clothes that can get wet like swimsuits or quick-dry shorts, avoiding cotton and relying on wool or polypro layers if you need warmth. Wear water shoes like Teva or Chaco sandals (but, they shouldn’t be flip flops or the slip-on type) or sneakers that can get wet. If you wear sunglasses, use a retention device like Croakies, so they won’t get lost if they come off. Wear plenty of sunscreen and bring some water.

Since whitewater rafting is a wet activity by nature, you could consider bringing a change of clothes and a towel along to leave in the shuttle car or bus in case you get wet. Don’t bring binoculars or a camera along, unless they are waterproof. Some outfitters sell disposable, waterproof cameras. A local company called Float O Graphs will take your picture while you are going through either Big Kahuna or Lunch Counter rapids. They are located in the town of Jackson and photos of your trip can be viewed after you get back from town or online when you get home.

Snake River Scenic Float Trips

Solitude Scenic Float Trip - What Wildlife Will You See? Photo: Solitude

Solitude Scenic Float Trip - What Wildlife Will You See? Photo: Solitude


A scenic float trip down the Snake River is a perfect way to see wildlife in their natural habitat peacefully going about their daily lives without the intrusive nature of a vehicle. In the summertime, Grand Teton Park teems with wildlife such as elk, moose, deer, bison, eagles, osprey, a large variety of ducks, song birds, and small mammals.

View all this with the awe-inspiring Teton Range as backdrop. Chances are high that you’ll learn a lot about the area and its animal inhabitants, as well. The Valley’s tour guides have countless river trips under their belts and often have educational expertise in wildlife biology, geology or other related fields.

Photo opportunities abound on your tranquil float down the river. Bring a camera and have it ready for special wildlife sightings and unfathomable Teton views. Guides will often alert you to popular photo ops or those with historical significance, so listen up!

Scenic Float Trip Essentials

Spring Creek’s qualified outfitters provide personal floatation devices (PFD’s) and usually rain panchos, and shuttles to and from the float. You should dress in casual clothes (including layers like a sweater/jacket in case of cooler temps) and wear soft-soled shoes, and bring sunglasses, sunscreen, binoculars and a camera. It’s recommended to have a secure strap to hold binoculars or cameras, so that they do not fall into the water, and maybe even a dry bag.

Spring Creek’s Packages and Specials

The Spring Creek Ranch Summer Adventure Package includes whitewater rafting. Find a Spring Creek Ranch summer special that’s perfect for you during this magical time! Call today to learn more about packages and specials (800) 443-6139.

Spring Sightings Gallery

Gallery

This gallery contains 13 photos.

Spring is a wonderful time for watching wildlife. Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks are less busy, animals are moving around and coming out of hibernation, or returning from their “winter homes.” Check out the below gallery of some of … Continue reading

Moose & Spruce

Moose - Spring Creek Ranch, Jackson Hole, WY
Lots of moose activity has been seen on recent safaris and this moose was particularly entertaining to watch as it eagerly browsed on a spruce tree. Spruce are probably not a moose’s favorite food, but long Winters limit available forage and require them to diversify their diet. Moose are often the highlight of a wildlife safari since they are so unique looking and seem to have a lot of personality. Signs of Spring continue to take place and today I saw my first Osprey which had returned to Jackson Hole after its long migration South (often as far away as South America).

Returning Migrants

Osprey - Spring Creek Ranch, Jackson Hole, WY
Ospreys are back in Jackson Hole and almost every osprey nest along the Snake River is occupied with a pair. The bald eagle nest on Spring Creek Ranch had a late start but our local eagles are on the nest and we’ll remain hopeful that they have a successful nest this year.

Other birds to have returned recently include sandhill cranes, several different species of waterfowl and loons.