See The Grand Canyon
I had never seen the Grand Canyon before and thanks to the great crew from Western River, they made my first visit incredibly memorable. Our crew (Evan, Johnny, Kurt, and Bryan) were fantastic. You can get real bored sitting on a raft for 6 hours a day, but not with these guys. It was a pleasure getting to know them. We'd obviously talk about the river and I loved the stories they had, but I hope they had a good time getting to know us too.
The trip was was organized and I never felt unsafe or not taken care of. It is a little funny how there really is no itinerary once you're on the river, it's completely up to the trip leader. I can see why you don't advertise that so much as most people probably want to know what they're getting into, but that's the beauty of this trip. You leave your normal routine, your everyday life behind and go with the flow (pun intended).
Camp life was great. No complaints at all about food. We definitely never went hungry and I'm glad I went for Nutter Butters instead of Oreos at lunch! I was very impressed with the Dutch oven skills.
I thought all our side hikes were wonderful. Really enjoyed the Little Colorado (since we were so lucky to see it blue) and Havasu as that type of scenery and activity you can't get anywhere else. The Patio was amazing and a highlight as well. I also appreciated the knowledge around the layers of rock and the Great Unconformity on some of our hikes. Seeing things is one thing but having some knowledge behind it really made the trip special.
I was really glad to have the guides happy to show us all this stuff. I never tired of Evan saying to "grab your camera". They never had the "been there, done that" attitude even though they've been doing this for so long. It definitely made me as a guest feel appreciated.
I can see why some people would prefer a 3-day trip, but anyone looking for the full experience should do the 7-day. I didn't feel like I missed anything by not doing a paddle raft trip. I would absolutely recommend Western River for anyone looking to do a trip through the Grand Canyon.