The Middle Fork of the Salmon River is the Crown Jewel of the rafting world.
The free flowing Middle Fork is located in the largest wilderness in the lower 48 States, often referred to as “The Frank”.
This spectacular landscape is where you and your friends or family can experience the vacation of a lifetime.
Your float trip is over 100 miles long (if you float the whole Middle Fork). The Forest Service allows only 24 guests per launch, so you will need to book early, if you have specific date requirements. We can provide you with as many references as you would like.
The Frank Church “River of No Return” Wilderness is a spectacular trip to get away from your phone, computer, and the rest of your electronics.
This wilderness will take your breath away with its snow-capped peaks and sparkling water.
It is a place of immense diversity with very little intrusion from the outside world.
Even though this is a wilderness vacation, we provide amenities to make you very comfortable on your trip. For example: tables, chairs, tents, sleeping pads, and sleeping bags, etc.
For more information on what we provide, check out our Provided Gear List.
We enjoy having children on these trips and have taken children from ages 4 and up. We will make minimum age recommendations depending on the trip date and potential water levels. However, we feel that you know your children best and will usually leave the final decision up to you.
HOW DOES YOUR GEAR GET FROM CAMPSITE TO CAMPSITE?
We run a cargo boat called the “Sweep Boat” which carries much of the trips gear. It usually runs ahead and has most of the camp set-up upon your arrival. Occasionally guests will join the sweep boat and leave the rest of the group behind. Spending the day with the sweep boat captain allows you to enjoy lots of time alone at the camp until the rest of the group arrives.
WHERE DO WE START OUR IDAHO WILDERNESS ADVENTURE?
On most trips we will gather the evening before in the small picturesque alpine town of Stanley, Idaho. We will meet you for a group pre-trip orientation at “River 1” (a local store) to go over any questions you might have. At this time we will give you dry bags to keep your gear dry as we float down the river.
Most of our guests spend the night at the Mountain Village Lodge (1-800-843-5475) in Stanley, Idaho. This lodge is conveniently located and has many amenities that make staying there ideal.
Generally, at 8 a.m. the next morning a bus we have chartered for you will be ready to take you to the beginning of your rafting wilderness vacation. It will take approximately 2 hours to reach the river with a restroom break along the way. It usually take about 30 minutes for trips that involve a flight.
At Boundary Creek, the U.S. Forest Service will give an educational river use orientation followed by our river safety orientation. All guests will be issued a life jacket and required to wear it all times while floating the river.
Now you are ready to begin!
At over 6,000 feet in elevation, you are prepared for what appears to be an alpine river. Normal river attire will consist of bathing suit, sandals, and sunscreen. (See Gear List)
This Class IV river (see Whitewater) will drop approximately 28 feet per mile, so it won’t be long before the drop in elevation leaves you in an overall warmer climate. During the next 6 days, you will continuously witness dramatic changes in geology and scenery.
As you near the end of your trip, you will be passing through the second deepest canyon in the lower 48 states. You will have a difficult time deciding which part of the river is your favorite. The fishing is spectacular.
Your Middle Fork Salmon River adventure entails more than whitewater and fishing.
This relaxing family vacation has something to offer everyone. You might be planning a second honeymoon. The river has a generous amount of hot springs. These can make for the perfect soak for the two of you. Perhaps the adventure you’ve embarked upon is a family affair and you have brought the children along to enjoy time together, soaking in a warm natural spring, jumping off rocks, laughing and making new friends, and just being kids.
Guests can go swimming in one of the swimming holes or exploring the ancient history along this river corridor. The Sheep-eater Indians made their home here. They left behind many pictographs for us to enjoy.
The group of photographs below will give you a glimpse of what your Middle Fork float trip could be like.
The Middle Fork abounds with wildlife, ranging from the Shiras Moose and Rocky Mountain Elk to the Mule Deer and Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep. Plus many other small animals can be found, as well as the newly introduced Canadian Grey Wolf.
This free flowing river is also a bird watchers’ delight. From the majestic Bald Eagle and Osprey to Idaho’s State bird, the Mountain Bluebird, they are all here in multitude.