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Westwater Canyon, UT

Bureau of Land Management


Westwater Canyon is one of the premier whitewater river trips in the west. Trips range from one to two days and beautiful designated campsites are available in the canyon. Depending on water level, Westwater ranges from being fun and splashy to fast and powerful. Excellent river skills are a must at every water level. A permit is required for all private and commercial groups.

There are eleven named rapids within Westwater Canyon that range in difficulty up to Class IV. The first two are Wild Horse and Little Dolores (a.k.a. Little D). A great play spot for kayakers forms in the second part of Little D in low to medium water levels. The most significant rapids lie within a two-mile stretch of the inner canyon, formed by pre-Cambrian metamorphic rock. Rapids here include (in order): Marble Canyon, Staircase, Big Hummer, Funnel Falls, Surprise, Skull, Bowling Alley, Sock-It-To-Me, and Last Chance. The most challenging rapids are Funnel Falls (especially at high water), Skull, and Sock-It-To-Me. The BLM River Rangers can provide you with specific information regarding the rapids during the check-in process.

A Westwater permit for private groups costs $10 per person with a limit of 25 people per permit. All groups must read and strictly adhere to the stipulations of the permit. Call 435-259-7012 for a Westwater permit. The Westwater phone is available from 8 am to 12 noon, Monday through Friday. No permits are available at the Westwater Ranger Station.

Recreational Activities:



Moab Field Office
82 East Dogwood
Phone: (435) 259-2100


The Westwater Ranger Station is 4.5 miles from the Utah-Colorado state line. From the station, it is approximately 17 river miles to the first available takeout point at the Cisco Landing. In this distance, the river drops 125 feet. The ranger station is approximately 63 river miles from Moab, Utah, and 127 river miles from the Colorado's confluence with the Green River. helps you discover and book trips to all of America's public places.
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