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“Perfect day on a beautiful river”

Cascade Raft & Kayak
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Idaho whitewater rafting and kayaking trips departing daily. Large riverside decks, catering facilities available, gift shop, cafe, free parking. Adventure for all ages and skill levels with half and full day whitewater rafting trips. Located less than one hour from Boise!
Chicago, IL
Level Contributor
17 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Perfect day on a beautiful river”
Reviewed September 12, 2011

My girlfriends and I visited Boise, Idaho for a fun weekend of outdoor adventures, and were more than pleasantly surprised with everything there was to do. The rafting was DEFINITELY a highlight. We did 'The Splash' half day rafting option (originally wanted to do 'The Rush'/more intense half day option but it wasnt an option this late in the season) and it turned out to be perfect. The Payette river is gorgeous and our guide Nick was the perfect balance of keeping us safe while letting us have fun. Everything about Cascade seemed great too....even with all the different types of groups coming to raft (there were a wide range of ages and fitness levels present), the process from start to finish ran seamlessly. Very impressive.

Thanks for a great day, highly recommended!!

Visited September 2011
Helpful?
2 Thank hadleyruth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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130 reviews from our community

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English first
Boise, Idaho
Level Contributor
484 reviews
47 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 450 helpful votes
“Great adventure and family trips!”
Reviewed July 29, 2011

Less than an hour's drive from Boise, Cascade Raft & Kayak offers various kinds of trips and we make sure to go every year and raft with them at least once. They always have good guides and we always have a fun and safe trip. This year we took kids for the first time (ages 9 and 10) and did the full day trip on the North Fork/Cabarton. With class II and III rapids, it was safe and fun and the kids had a blast. There were younger kids on another raft and they also enjoyed it. There is beautiful scenery, some wildlife/birds, and some fun parts of the river but nothing really dangerous. A great time had by all! Last year we did the same trip without kids and it was also great - both trips we saw bald eagles too.

Our favorite trip is the more adventurous class IV half day Lower South Fork. That has thrills and is always a ton of fun whether you go alone or with friends! If you like water it is a great adventure - not too hard, but hard enough to be exciting!!! We've always had really good guides for that trip.

We have also enjoyed the full day Canyon Adventure trip which includes a section where you have to carry the raft around a small waterfall. You can sit in some hot springs too. It is a fun trip and full of adventure - we'd love to do it again and I'm sure we will!

If you are in the area, booking a trip with Cascade Raft & Kayak is a great thing to do at least once a year - we are lucky enough to live close to some great white water! We also take out of town visitors on these trips and they always rave about it. Bring sunscreen and wear a T-shirt over your swimsuit so you aren't rubbed by the life jacket. Helmets and life jackets provided with neoprene and splash jackets available too - no charge for equipment. They always have a photographer take pictures on a few of the rapids, though the prices are high. You will have a great trip regardless of whether you buy a photo of it though! HIGHLY recommended for local fun!!

Visited July 2011
Helpful?
3 Thank DAEsmae
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Eagle, Idaho
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“The best summer I ever had was spending it with CR&K”
Reviewed August 23, 2010

While most of you will probably contact Cascade Raft & Kayak for rafting, there's something else you should know. World-class kayaking instruction is also available on a river of the same caliber.
I spent the summer of 2010 taking full-day, private instruction almost every Sunday between July and August. If you're going to seriously pursue the sport for a lifetime of fun, you need to make that commitment. And I'm so glad I did.
The instruction is fabulous. Every instructor has a dedication to safety and a commitment to teaching you the correct skills the first time, so there's nothing to undo. The instructors also follow the same template for teaching, so I never had mixed messages switching between them.
How it works: a day-long lesson is 9 to 4. Arrive around 8:45 and you'll organize your boat or borrow one of theirs. Paddling first starts on the Lower Main which is a Class I with one Class III rapid at the end called Climax. You'll first learn the basic skills of paddle strokes and balance in your boat. Your instructor will have you spend the entire day working first on getting in and out of eddies. Everything is technique-based for your safety. When you get to Climax, give it a try and if you roll over... don't worry. By the time you've gone upside down, your instructor is already right by your side... rolling you right back over again. It's that safe.
Around noon, you'll finish and shuttle back to the company for lunch. Try the open-air barbecue or anything from the kitchen. The food is awesome, and don't forget lots of water to hydrate yourself.
As I progressed throughout lessons, my afternoon sessions and eventually full-day sessions switched to the Main Payette. It's a fabulous river for instruction. Super clean, beautiful and Class II/III rapids that are evenly spaced out to give you time to run them, discuss your progress, and give it a whirl again.
Instruction continues to focus on paddle strokes and eddy turns, but you'll also add in rapids and wave trains. Don't be so nervous to fall over that you turn rigid. Everyone swims. It's a part of learning to kayak! Just remember your instructor is never more than one or two feet from your side, and you'll get rolled right back over in a heartbeat.
The rapids are tons of fun, and as you progress, one session you'll likely realize... hey, I smiled the whole way through that rapid! Feelings of being scared will change over to enjoying the challenge, and eventually asking yourself... why didn't I try this years ago?
One of the perks of running the rapids... a private photographer lines the banks around the Mixmaster rapids, called Wavetrain Photos. He takes fabulous photos and you can purchase photos on his website. Be sure to do that. You can study the progress of your strokes frame by frame from his photos... and you'll also have a sentimental reminder of the fun you had forever.
Bottom line: Cascade Raft & Kayak is a family owned and operated company that began with one dad who finished out his Olympic-caliber dreams, took his family to Idaho and started a company that's top notch. From the instructors they employ, to the mom and dad and three sons and their wives who run the operation... you'll get quality instruction and make friends you'll want to keep for life.
Come to think of it, it's kind of a metaphoric way of looking at the river... Sometimes life isn't about where you've paddled or what class rapid it was, it's also about who you meet along the way.
Challenge yourself, try a new skill and learn to kayak through Cascade Raft and Kayak. It'll be the best decision you ever made.

Helpful?
1 Thank Promptergal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nampa, Idaho
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“A Wonderful Time for the Kids and Mentors of The Mentoring Network, Inc.!”
Reviewed August 2, 2010

We have a non-profit mentoring program that pairs at-risk kids with responsible, caring adults. Each summer we have a day camp that lets the mentors and mentees do something fun together outside of the normal school setting. Taking kids on whitewater can be a bit disconcerting, but the staff for Cascade Raft and Kayak put our minds at ease. They reassured each child of their safety and gave detailed guidelines to make certain they stayed safe. Matt, Pat, Taylor, and Kyle made each child’s day a dream come true as they took time to show them they are special and important. Kelsey took amazing photographs of the rapids so each child will be able to have an image of the trip to share with their mentors and friends. Afterwards, Amanda cooked hamburgers for everyone and appetites whetted by the adventure did justice to her culinary skills. After lunch, the kids played on the riverbank and gathered pebbles or soaked in the pool of water. Cascade Raft and Kayak had a staff member come down and supervise the rope swing so they could swing out over the water and splash into the river below. For most of the children, this was a first-time river adventure. Their wide-eyed delight was priceless to see. As one child wrote, “Thank you…I had the best time of my life going down the rapids” I would highly recommend this company for the excellent services and personal attention they provide.

Helpful?
1 Thank DonnaShines
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
boise, id
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“great times in summer”
Reviewed July 31, 2010

We won a trip with kqfc radio here in boise, our trip was wonderful. Our guide was competent, read the people on the raft, and their capacity for fun, and found lines through the rapids that were wonderful, thanks for a thoroughly enjoyable time

Helpful?
1 Thank wfer1195
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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