MEETING PLACE: TBD for the 2024 Season (in or near Syringa, ID)
MEETING TIME: 8:00 or 9:00 AM PST
RIVER RATING: Class III-IV+
- 40 miles (2 day)
- 60 miles (3 day)
- White Pine (2 day)*
- Headwaters of the Lochsa (3 day)*
*Subject to change, due to water levels
Knife Edge (Mile Marker 107)*
*Subject to change, due to water levels
RETURN TIME: approximately 5:00 PM PST Syringa, Idaho
TRIP LENGTH: 2 or 3 days
AGE LIMIT: Minimum age is 17
BOAT TYPE: Paddle Rafts with stern frames
TRIP INCLUDES: Services of our talented adventure consultants and professional guides, all meals/beverages as indicated in the itinerary (including beer and wine), all rafting/camping gear, and transportation to/from river meeting points.
DOES NOT INCLUDE: 8% Land and water access fee, pre/post trip lodging accommodations, guide gratuity
Meet ROW's Team Leader at the Syringa Cafe/River Dance Lodge at your designated meeting time for a brief orientation meeting to answer any last-minute questions. About 45 minutes later you depart in our bus and travel to the rafting trip launch point. Along the way, your guides will tell you a few stories about the area. Once at the river, our staff prepares you with a thorough safety orientation. We launch on the river and enjoy rafting a few miles before stopping for a delicious riverside lunch.
On two-day trips, we start off with big whitewater immediately! This is some of the most technically challenging whitewater to be found anywhere on the planet and requires your full attention and enthusiasm! Few rivers offer so much raft-bashing quality whitewater!
Our three-day Lochsa adventures we put-in near the confluence with White Sands Creek and the Crooked Fork. The first day is an intermediate whitewater day floating through a beautifully forested canyon of cedars and fir.
On all Lochsa multiday whitewater rafting trips, we arrive at camp in the late afternoon. Carry your personal gear to the tent of your choice and enjoy the spectacular Rocky Mountain scenery.
Whitewater is only one of the many attractions on the Lochsa. Our camps are set amidst dense cedar forests in the deep river canyon. We may enjoy sightings of eagles and osprey as well as numerous other birds. Moss-covered rocks, star-lit nights, and evening campfires are just a few of the reasons we strongly encourage you to join us for a 3-day trip in this enchanting land.
Enjoy free time for hiking, fishing, reading, or just relaxing. Hors d'oeuvres are served around 6:00 and dinner about 7:30. After dinner a campfire is lit and an evening of laughter and sharing begins making the perfect ending for a fantastic day of whitewater rafting.
(2 day) Camping on ROW Island
(3 day) Riverside camping, site dependent on water levels
MEALS INCLUDED: Lunch, Dinner
We wake you around 7:30 AM with the smell of fresh-brewed coffee. Breakfast is served around 8:00 AM and while we clean up the kitchen you pack up your personal gear. The rafts are loaded and we depart from camp at 9:30 AM for an adventure-packed day of white water rafting with rapids, great Western scenery and fun.
Our guides share stories as we raft. You learn about the thick forest and trees that surround the river as well as the forest fires that have ravaged this land in the past. You also learn about the Nez Perce, the original inhabitants of this rugged land.
Guests on the two-day trip paddle the "Goat Range" on this day, with famous rapids such as Ten-Pin Alley, the Grim Reaper, Bloody Mary, Horsetail Falls, Otter Slide, Lochsa Falls, Termination and more. This section is less technical than the upper section, but has bigger waves and provides an amazing day of whitewater. The trip gets off the river between 3:30 and 5:00 PM and return to the River Dance Lodge.
On the three-day trip, this is the technical whitewater day with rapids such as Stanley Creek, Castle Creek, Triple Hole and many, many more. This is heart-pounding whitewater that requires superb teamwork. The trip continues with another night's camping on the river. After dinner and the evening campfire, watch for a glorious star-studded sky.
(2 Day) Not Included
(3 Day) Camping on ROW Island
(2 Day)Breakfast, Lunch
(3 Day) Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
It's a big day paddling through the Goat Range. Here are dozens of rapids including House Wave, Horsetail Falls, Bloody Mary, Pickin Up the Pieces, and Termination. By the time the day is over you'll be grinning from ear to ear. Return to the River Dance Lodge at the end of the day. Overnight at a nearby accommodation, or begin your travels home.
ACCOMMODATIONS: Not Included
MEALS INCLUDED: Breakfast, Lunch
- From Lewiston, Idaho: 1 hour and 45 minutes to Syringa, Idaho.
- From Spokane, Washington: 3.5 hours to Syringa, Idaho.
- From Missoula, Montana: 2 hours and 40 minutes to Syringa, Idhao.
Local Lodging Accomodations:
6873 Highway 12
Kooskia, ID 83539
5.4 miles, 6 minutes
Three Rivers Resort
Cabins, A-frames, & Motel Rooms
115 Selway Rd
Kooskia, ID 83539
3RiversResortii@gmail.com; reservations can be made online
6.7 miles, 8 minutes
Lewis & Clark Resort
Cabins, Motel rooms, RV & tent sites
4243 Highway 12
Kamiah, ID 83536
21.9 miles, 24 minutes
RV & tent sites
Fenn Ranger Station, 831 Selway Rd
Kooskia, ID 83539
33 miles, 45 minutes
Clearwater 12 Motel
Hotel rooms with a full hot breakfast
108 E 3rd St, Highway 12
Kamiah, ID 83544
26 miles, 25 minutes
Kamiah, ID 83536
208-935-1492 or 714-658-4532
26.1 miles, 30 minutes
Best Western Lodge at River’s Edge
615 Main St
Orofino, ID 83544
46.7 miles, 54 minutes
115 Powell Rd
Lolo, MT 59847
71.8 miles, 1 hour, 33 minutes
There are various campgrounds in the Highway 12 corridor found on recreation.gov and through the Forest Service.
Click here to view National Weather Service's weather forecast for Syringa, Idaho.
Weather on the Lochsa is completely unpredictable. It can be rainy and/or cold in May in early June. In late June and July the weather is warmer and dryer, although you must come prepared for cold weather. You may not use all of the gear listed below, but we recommend bringing it all! If it's a hot day, you can remove some layers.
PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS & Essential Eligibility Requirements
Here at ROW Adventures, our first and foremost goal is for you to have an enjoyable and safe experience. While most of our trips are suitable for beginners, some of our trips are more active than others and it’s important that you understand the physical requirement of the trip you choose.
All of our multi-day rafting trips are active adventures that involve some level of physical exertion and possible exposure to the elements including but not limited to wind, rain, heat, sun, cold temperatures, and cold water conditions. ROW Adventures is able to accommodate people with physical limitations, disabilities, and medical conditions; please speak with your Adventure Consultant if you think you will require any additional assistance while on the trip. We ask that you consult your doctor if you have health or medical conditions that could impact your ability to participate in an active and outdoor adventure. In general, all trip participants must be able to do the following:
- Wear all protective and safety equipment that is required by ROW Adventures and recommended/required by industry-wide standards.
- Load and unload, on their own or with the aid of a qualified companion, the bus and/or van providing transportation for ROW Adventures activities.
- Reach the river access points (put-in and take-out) on their own, or with the aid of a qualified companion.
- Enter and exit the raft, kayak and/or inflatable kayak on their own or with the aid of a qualified companion.
- Remain seated and balanced in a floating raft, canoe, kayak or inflatable kayak w/ the aid of adaptive equipment, if necessary.
- Perform all on-water activities, including following instructions that like paddling commands from the guide in class I and higher whitewater on their own or with the assistance of a qualified companion.
- Float on their back when entering moving and still water. The participant must be capable of turning from face-down to face-up in the water with the aid of a Personal Floatation Device and must be able to hold their breath while underwater.
- Remain calm and keep breathing under control in the event of a whitewater swim.
- Get out from under a raft, whether the raft is up-right or capsized, in moving water.
- Climb into the raft, with the help of another person, should an involuntary swim happen at any point on the river.
- Make progress toward the shoreline or a raft by swimming in moving water and must be able to exit the river and ascend the shoreline once reached.
- Participate as an active paddler when instructed by the guide for the duration of the trip.
- Move about the campsite on their own or with the aid of a qualified companion on all trips that include overnight camping and/or lunch.
Gear ROW Provides
PFD, Helmet, Farmer John Wet Suit, Camino Wet Suit Jacket, Wet Suit Booties, Fleece Jacket, and Splash Jacket. All camping gear including tents, sleeping bags, sleeping bag liners, pillows, and sleeping pads.
ROW provides Farmer John style wetsuits for all our Lochsa trips (long legs, but no sleeves). These are often worn with your polypro long underwear underneath for extra warmth. Wool or fleece socks can also be worn with the provided booties if your feet tend to get cold.
A thin layer of synthetic material (like a swimsuit or polyester), merino wool or silk could be worn under a wetsuit, but generally, the wetsuit is considered a base layer that goes next to your skin. Then for added warmth, you can add a layer of fleece or mid-weight layer of wool over the wetsuit. The final layer should be waterproof.
We provide tents for every two people; if you would single tents please let us know.
WHAT YOU SHOULD PACK
All of your personal items should be packed into a soft-sided duffle bag approximately 12” x 13” x 24” in size. Due to van and raft space, please limit your gear to the recommended packing sizes.
Please pack your gear in ONE heavy-duty plastic garbage bag no larger than 30 gallons. Label your bag with masking tape on the outside. We load all bags into one large duffel bag for a short float to camp in the afternoon. Please do not bring backpacks, hard suitcases, etc. Your overnight gear will be on our bus during the day and not accessible.
CLOTHES & GEAR FOR THE RIVER (Recommended)
- Swimsuit to wear under wetsuit
- Hat to wear under helmet
- Polypropylene or silk long underwear (top and bottom) when it is cold
- Shorts or swim trunks to wear over wetsuit
- Wool or polypro socks to wear under booties (ski socks work well)
- Neoprene or wool gloves (optional)
- Sunglasses with "Chums" style eyeglass holder
- Biodegrable sunscreen (we highly recommend Stream2Sea as an all natural option)
- Lip balm with SPF 20-50
- Water bottle with carabiner
- Bee Sting kit for those allergic to bees
- (If you have size 14+ feet, bring a pair of old tennis shoes and wool socks to wear on river)
CLOTHES FOR CAMP
- Long pants
- T-shirt (long or short sleeve)
- One synthetic mid-weight sweaters
- Vest (optional)
- Rain jacket & Rain Pants
- Underwear and socks
- One set of long underwear to stay warm on cold nights
- Warm ski type hat and/or ball cap for cold nights
- Flashlight or headlamp with extra bulb and batteries
- Skin lotion, lip balm, waterproof sunscreen, etc.
- Toilet kit - toothbrush and paste, soap ( biodegradable is best, no soaps can be used in the river), camp towel, washcloth, comb, handkerchief, a small pack of tissues, small mirror, moist towelettes, shaving stuff, feminine sanitary supplies, etc.
- Extra eyeglasses and/or contact lenses strongly suggested. ALL glasses need a head strap!
- One pair of tennis shoes or walking shoes
- Camera – waterproof digital
- Many guests use smartphones (there is NOT cell service on the river). A waterproof case is also highly recommended for protection and ease of use.
- Paddling Gloves
- Small Towel
- 2-3 Carabiners for clipping items to the boat
- Fishing gear & Idaho fishing license, must be in a protective case and dissembled
- Pocket knife
- Resusable dirty/clean gear bags for wet or soilde items
- Cards, games, books, journals
LAYERING FOR OUTDOOR COMFORT
Clothing layers are the thermostat of the wilderness. As you get ready for your river trip, think about dressing in layers. By adding and subtracting layers you can keep yourself perfectly comfortable. If you were to look into the dry bags of a well-prepared river guide you would see packing for three weather scenarios -- cold, wet days; hot, summer days; and cool evenings and mornings in camp. All of your on-river clothing should be made from synthetic fabrics with names like fleece, pile, polypropylene, Capilene™ or polyester. A cotton T-shirt is used occasionally on hot, sunny days, but cotton clothing is best saved for on-shore camp use.
Remember: Cotton is a non-water-wicking material and should never be worn on the river. Cotton holds water against you and makes it difficult to stay warm. Fleece, Pile, Polypropylene, bunting, Capilene, etc., are a few examples of the trade names for a class of synthetic materials that retain their ability to insulate when wet.
IDAHO fishing licenses are required if you plan on fishing. You can pre-purchase a license by calling 1-800-55-HUNT5 with your driver's license and a credit card or on Idaho’s Fish and Game website. Because we use mostly paddle rafts on the Lochsa it is not possible to fish from the rafts. Camp is the perfect time to enjoy fishing.
Like anyone in the service business, river and outdoor adventure guides appreciate gratuities. Our guides are some of the best and most highly trained in the business. They not only guide your raft down the river, but set up camp, cook and serve gourmet meals, provide interpretation on the natural and cultural history of the area and strive to provide the highest level of hospitality. Tipping is ultimately a personal decision, however, if you appreciate the service your guides provided, then as a guideline we suggest a gratuity of 10-20% of the trip price. Tips can be given to the ROW Team Leader at the end of the trip in the form of cash or personal check. The Team Leader distributes them equally among the guides and gives a portion to ROW’s behind-the-scenes, unsung heroes like our drivers and food shoppers.
Undaunted Courage by Stephen Ambrose.
The Lolo Trail: A History and a Guide to the Trail of Lewis and Clark by Ralph S. Space
The Lochsa Story: Land Ethics in the Bitterroot Mountains by Bud Moore
Caulked Boots and other Northwest Writings by Bert Russell
Terms & Conditions
Please see our full Terms & Conditions HERE.