People always want to know what they REALLY will need on their white water raft trip. Everyone is different, and everyone has at least one must-have personal item (For me, it’s leave-in conditioner. For others, it’s a razor, or the extra-moisturizing face lotion, a guitar, or a favorite book of poetry.), but some things are a given. We spent a lot of time whittling down the detailed packing list we send out in our trip info packets — so, if you see something on that list, chances are you’re REALLY going to want it with you on your rafting adventure.
The packing list item that gets the most questions is rain gear. Yes, you REALLY will want a 2-piece rain suit, even if your trip is in the middle of the driest summer on record. The rain gear isn’t for rain; it’s for rapids. The water splashing up from the Colorado River ALWAYS is cold. (I shouldn’t say “splashing.” Envision, instead, a bucket–a very large bucket–of 55-65 degree water being thrown at you.) Even in the heat of the summer, there probably will be a few times (early in the morning, maybe, while you’re still in the shade of the Canyon walls) when you’ll want the option to stay dry.
The thing people tend to overpack is clothes. Unless you’re going on our 13-day oar trip, the most you probably will need is maybe 3 changes of clothes. You’ll see that everyone else (including the guides) finds a favorite shirt or pair of shorts and sticks with it. Two pairs of quick-drying shorts (board shorts or swim trunks work great), a couple of swimsuits, a few pairs of socks, and a few long-sleeved shirts (for sun protection) probably really will be just about all you’ll need.
It’s a delicate balance. You don’t want to leave behind things you’ll need (Sunscreen. Camera. Rain gear.), but it’s really important to pack light. This is especially true on our partial-Canyon trips, where you’ll be hiking all your gear in or out of the Canyon.
If you want to talk more about what you’ll REALLY need on your Grand Canyon adventure, just give us a call at 800-343-3121!