Upper Colorado River Fly Fishing, Camping, Boating

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Upper Colorado River

The Upper Colorado River is only a small part of the entire Colorado River that flows 1500 miles to the Gulf of Mexico, but there’s premiere outdoor recreation for everyone.

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  • The Upper Colorado offers premiere outdoor recreation for everyone of any age
  • Pumphouse Recreation Area is a good place to start a rafting adventure
  • This river is accessible year-round
  • Gore Canyon has Class IV and V rapids for the expert rafter
  • Fish the Upper Colorado for brown and rainbow trout


The Upper Colorado River starts its path in Rocky Mountain National Park and rushes southward towards Utah. Water lovers flock to the area to take advantage of the fun-filled rafting trips and incredible scenery.


You can access the river at Kremmling which is west of Rocky Mountain National Park on US Highway 40. You also can find river access at Pumphouse Recreation Area. From Kremmling go south on Highway 9 to Grand County 1, or Trough Road, go 10 miles and turn right on the Pumphouse access road.


The river is accessible all year.


The Upper Colorado River is a recreational hotspot and here are some of the activities you can enjoy:

  • Fishing
    The water is so easily accessed at the Upper Colorado that fly-fishermen love it here. Wading is great in the shallow sections, and State Wildlife access and parking lots exist so you can literally drive up to your fishing spot. The waters of the Upper Colorado are known for brown and rainbow trout fishing.
  • Whitewater rafting and floating
    The rafting season on the Upper Colorado River runs from April through September. There are two different ways to run the Upper Colorado, through Gore Canyon or by a quiet float trip. Gore Canyon offers Class IV and V rapids for only the bravest rafters. For a mellow float trip there are sections of river that pass through the Gore Range and hit only a few Class I and II rapids. The Upper Colorado begins near Kremmling and travels through mainly Class I and II rapids.

Additional Info

The landscape along the Upper Colorado River varies greatly. You’ll see meadows, ranch lands, banks lined with cottonwoods and willows, valleys, Ponderosa pines and junipers dotting sage-covered slopes, deep canyons and rugged cliffs.