The Salmon River in the great state of Idaho is one of the most sought after river experiences in the world. The Middle Fork of the Salmon River starts out near the beautiful little town of Stanley, Idaho. Stanley is nestled in the Sawtooth Mountains just over the pass from the more famous Sun Valley, Idaho.
The Middle Fork of the Salmon River is a high alpine, clear water, fast-moving whitewater rafting trip. I descend quickly through three distinct types of scenery. At first you are surrounded by a thick, lush pine forest, then it opens up a bit with large ponderosa pine trees dotting the landscape. In fact, it looks a lot like the old Ponderosa Ranch from the old Bonanza TV show (am I dating myself?). Finally, you enter a steep, narrow gorge that looks a little bit like Yosemite. Every turn in the river reveals a breathtaking view.
The rapids are fairly continuous, and very fun. In June, when the water is high, some get up to a class IV but the rest of they season it is more of a class III river. You can ride in a row boat where the guide does all the work, join a crew of paddlers as the guide steers and shouts commands, or try your hand at an inflatable kayak. You can participate or relax as much as you would like.
Besides the world-class scenery and fun rapids, there are beautiful campsites, natural hot springs for bathing, an amazing trouth fishery, and beautiful walking trails for a enjoyable hike from camp or your lunch stop.
You should put this one on your life list.