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Westwater Canyon, Cisco

#205 of 211 in Nature in Utah
Canyon · Hidden Gem · Water Body

Westwater Canyon is a canyon located on the Colorado River in Eastern Utah between the Utah/Colorado state line and Cisco, Utah. The inner gorge of the canyon is made up of black Precambrian rock and contains class III and IV rapids which are sought after by whitewater enthusiasts. The most notable rapid, called "Skull", is the most significant.

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) oversees a permitting system for whitewater travelers for this section of the Colorado River, and boaters must follow special rules and regulations. Many boaters pack camping equipment in on rafts and make the 17-mile (27 km) trip from Westwater ranger station to Cisco landing over 1–2 days.

Westwater Canyon runs through a wilderness study area and has been proposed for designation as a wild and scenic river along with Ruby Canyon just upstream.

The Westwater Ranger Station put-in to the Rose Ranch takeout is a 17-mile journey. Most whitewater is compacted in the Marble gorge where rescue of swimmers and recovery of capsized vessels is limited by vertical canyon walls.
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TripAdvisor traveler rating 3.5
13 reviews
  • We came here with Adrift Adventures in early July. It's an early start from Moab and a 2 hour drive to get to the river. It can be very "buggy" at the entry point, at the lunch spot and near the end.....  more »
  • Excellent experience! The water levels were perfect in mid-July and got rapids ranging from 2-4+ in terms of difficulty. Low-risk of boat flipping, but some rapids were extremely exhilarating and...  more »
  • Great whitwater. If you do it, sit in the front so you get dunked!!
  • Supa Fun
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