recommendations for a winter packrafting trip in the SW?

Anyone have any recommendations for a winter to early spring 5-7 day trip? preferably in the southwest, we live in Tucson and don’t want to spend days driving. I am wanting to do more whitewater, but I just bought my wife a raft and she is a novice. We are thinking of floating the Colorado (Moab to the confluence) as well as a few others. Any input from the pack rafting family?

colorado river to the confluence is a nice trip but no whitewater along that stretch- the trip down the green river to the confluence is much more tranquil without the jet boats though still no whitewater but plenty of opportunities to get lost out into the canyons and up on the mesas

i am planning a packraft trip down the san juan river and then up grand gulch

it seems like a great river for a packraft with some nice whitewater and plenty of off trail and canyon loop hikes

also the gila river is not too far- i’ve been down that one in a canoe before i got a packraft

san pedro? after some of those winter rains the levels bump up and it could be possible

i wonder about aravaipa


Agreed on the Verde. I’ve run the Verde from Beasley Flat to Childs in a PR and found it to be a great trip. There are a few rapids worth paying attention to if you’re going to run them, but the novice boater can simply walk around. I think for a trip of the length you describe, Beasley to Horseshoe Reservoir (the wilderness run) would be fantastic.

As noted, the SJ is pretty damn perfect as well.

The Gila is also a great option, but better for shorter trips.

Here are some resources: