Time of year
HectorG. wrote a review Dec 2020
This is the very first time we did a family trip like this. As a family we have camped, travel pretty extensively outdoors (national parks) with hiking and roughing it a bit too. We have also traveled internationally to many parts of the globe. I am sharing this information as a backdrop for comparing our Tour West trip to many excellent and exciting trips we have taken. My family, wife, two daughters and nephew have stated hands down that this was the best trip they have ever experienced. My expectations were blown away. The biggest impact for me was in seeing and living my family's reaction to this experience. The magic here for us was three fold. 1) The natural beauty, 2) the Tour West Guides and 3) Tour West Itinerary/Excursion Package. The tour west guides, John Buggenhagen, Wade Quilter and Alex Nadauld were the difference between great and that of life long memories. We feel extraordinarily fortunate to have had the luck to have landed these three professionals for our tour. All three were safety, service and fun oriented. Our trip was educational, exciting and a luxury experience too. The menus planned and the meals executed felt like that of a luxury hotel stay. We had a different breakfast each and every day from banana pancakes to 4 types of griddle scrambled eggs to egg mcmuffins Tour West style. Dinner ranged from pork loin BBQ'd then sauteed to pasta with clams & shrimp to street tacos with chicken or beef. Each meal was accompanied with a new and different salad. Greens, three beans, mini cucumbers with feta and tomato. All executed perfectly by John, Wade and Alex. We were all totally blown away at breakfast, lunch and dinner. Every meal ended with a different desert. On the last night we had freshly made (fried) glazed doughnuts. Wade took that project on. Who does this in a camping environment? Tour West did. Again far exceeding any reasonable expectations. We know and appreciate all the work and time it took to plan such an extensive menu and to then execute flawlessly. I wish to add that our fresh water and ice cooling was well managed right to the very end to where we had iced cold water to drink when we were all on the fireline at the take out point. No one was ever denied a cold drink any time during the trip. Excellent planning and management of trip resources. John, Wade and Alex do care deeply about those in their care on such a trip in such remote surroundings. Their care made this trip what it was, outstanding with fun, great comfort and unexpected luxury. The Tour West itinerary and excursion package was the perfect fit. Each day was well planned and ensured exposure to experience the natural beauty of Canyons National Park. The Tour West equipment (rafts, safety gear, kitchen, utensils, sleeping accommodations, sanitation) made this trip easy and allowed John, Wade and Alex to fully execute safety and comfort for all. The only equipment suggestion I would make would be to have bimini tops available on the rafts so that shade is an option. There were some private groups on the river that had those tops so they are available and appear to work well. We are so happy with this experience that we will soon start planning a Tour West trip of the Salmon River in Idaho.…
Date of experience: August 2020
Connector457436 wrote a review Nov 2020
This past July 2020 my wife and I took a six day rafting trip through Tour West in the Grand Canyon with another couple. We had a total of 9 on the boat, two amazing guides and one raft. Our guides were very knowledgeable of the river and how to navigate the rapids. They also shared very interesting facts all along the 189 miles we traveled. They made sure we experienced the different side canyons through hikes that were along the river and stopped at the magnificent Colorado River which was one of the highlights. There were natural spring waters that made for great hikes. The guides did an amazing job ensuring our safety and kept us well fed each day. My wife who is not a huge camper also greatly enjoyed the glorious scenery of the majestic canyon and sleeping out under the stars each evening. Although the temperatures were in the 100's each day, the coolness of the river splashing on us in the rapids helped keep us cool. At night we would wet down a sheet from the river that kept us cooler. We saw all kinds of amazing birds from herons to Red Tail Hawks, to white egrets, goats, big horned sheep, scorpions (very safe as they don't bother you), ring tail cats in the campground - really cool and large lizards. The helicopter ride out and airplane ride back to the cars was all part of the amazing experience. This was the trip of once in a lifetime and I am so glad we took it through Tours West.…
Date of experience: July 2020
aam333 wrote a review Aug 2020
Saint Louis, Missouri33 contributions15 helpful votes
We recently returned from 6 day motor rafting trip Grand Canyon. Canyon & Colorado River magnificent. Unfortunately, trip could have been much better. Guides did an excellent job of navigating the river. Beyond that, the guests did most of the work. 9 guests, 2 guides, 1 raft. Guests loaded & unloaded raft; we set up & took down camp. There was no shade provided. The other outfitters had large beach umbrellas for time on land. Temps exceeded 115 degrees F. Guides had personal umbrellas; guests had none. We arrived @ one campsite early afternoon. There was one central shaded area with log benches for all. One couple made this their campsite. All others were in dangerous heat & sun for several hours. The guides did not respond to protest from other guests. The following day the lead guide took 4 of the 9 guests on a hike - said to be 45 minutes. We declined as temperature was 115. They were gone 2.5 hours, while we were in the heat. Food provided would have been adequate, but was uniformly overcooked. Pancakes & French toast burned, burgers & chops rendered inedible by overcooking. Guests offered help with cooking- we did everything else- but help there was refused. TourWest was recommended by friends, though none had traveled recently. Clearly, the product has changed. I’ve waited a few weeks in hopes the company would respond to my private email review, which they encouraged. No response is telling. I recommend rafting the canyon. Shop around for an outfitter.…
Date of experience: July 2020
Response from Tour W, Manager at Tour West, Inc.
Responded Nov 20, 2020
We are happy you felt the Grand Canyon was spectacular. It is! We feel lucky to get to share it with others. We disagree that beyond navigating the boats that guests do all the work. No matter which outfitter you choose, all river companies ask its guests to help with a fireline. Helping get the bags and equipment on and off the boats each day is something we encourage but is not required. Rafting the Grand Canyon is a wilderness trip which is completely self-sufficient. We encourage guests to consider this before committing to a wilderness adventure. Our guides, who both had decades of experience worked tremendously hard on your trip. Food is prepared according to Health Code regulations and NPS guidelines because of this, guests are not allowed to help in the kitchen. Unfortunately, it was exceptionally warm on your trip. Something out of our control. We do appreciate your suggestion that we have more shade options for guests especially when they get to camp early or for those who choose to stay by the boats while others hike. Grand Canyon Rafting Trips are an adventure. We are sorry it did not meet your expectations. We had several other guests on your trip let us know they had a very different, more satisfactory trip. We appreciate you taking the time to let us know your concerns. Marcie Reservations Manager
Dan M wrote a review Jun 2020
Odenton, Maryland2 contributions
We took the 8 night Grand Canyon motor trip with Tour West to celebrate my daughter's high school graduation. Our expectations were exceeded in every way possible. We were expecting some great scenery and big rapids--which we certainly got. The hikes and side canyons were truly amazing. Our favorites include the Little Colorado River, Blacktail Canyon, Deer Creek, Havasu Falls, and Travertine Cavern. The guides were very professional, personable, and approachable. They somehow manage to be equal parts boatman, geologist, historian, chef, adventure seeker, safety hawk, and medic--all while staying good natured and seeming to have as much fun as their passengers. We can't say enough good things about our guides Jake, Jared, Chris, Ryan, and Joe--great guides and great people; thank you for your hard work. In addition, Tour West provided top notch rafts, gear, and amenities along the way. You almost forget that you are in a remote and unforgiving wilderness with the way that your are taken care of by TW. Their communication and support before and after the trip was outstanding. We would choose Tour West again in a heartbeat and will recommend them to anyone thinking about experiencing the canyon in this unforgettable way!…
Date of experience: June 2020
Forest wrote a review Jun 2020
Investing in memories, we booked our family vacation including our visit with the Bar 10 Ranch, 3 day and 2 nights in the Grand Canyon on the Colorado River - absolutely amazing. Expert guides who knew the geography, history, stories, river and the hidden adventures along the way, including Travertine grotto. We'll book another adventure!…
Date of experience: June 2020
Response from Tour W, Front Office Manager at Tour West, Inc.
Responded Jun 25, 2020
Thank you! We would love to have you back any time!