Whitewater Rafting in Sun Valley, Idaho

Sun Valley is Idaho’s iconic mountain town.

In the early days it was known for its celebrity sprinkled ski hill, now considered one of the best summer vacation destinations in the West.  Think…..A smaller, less congested, less commercialized…a vintage Jackson Hole.   Sun Valley’s proximity to world-class whitewater is amazing.  Within a few hours you have access to more rivers than can be mentioned. Sun Valley’s closest whitewater is on the nation’s original  Wild & Scenic River, The Salmon River of No Return in Stanley Idaho.

Stanley, Idaho’s river capital, is located 1 mega-scenic hour north of Sun Valley in the Nations’s largest National Recreation Area, The SNRA.  Stanley is the perfect, small mountain town that bustles in the summer with visitors of all kinds including rafters, anglers, water skiers, ATV’rs, hikers, birders and bakery goers. 

Whitewater Rafting in Stanley, Idaho

Sawtooth Adventure Company offers a variety of rafting options for all ages and abilities.   We invite you to spend a day of your Sun Valley vacation on the famous Salmon River with our crew of educated, trained and SUPER fun guides!

Scenic Trips- No Whitewater 

SAC’s scenic trip occurs on the flat water section of the Salmon.  Trip includes magnificent Sawtooth Mountain views, hotsprings, Osprey and Bald Eagles .  Trips occur 7 days a week. 

Family Fun Whitewater

Stanley’s ‘Day Stretch’ is the perfect introduction to Idaho’s famous Whitewater.  Our Class III rafting trips are very popular with families.  In fact we host 2 kids for every 1 adult the month of July.  The level of FUN is off the charts. We run rapids, jump off ‘jump rock’, eat a yummy riverside lunch and ‘ride the bull’.    This trip is great for kids aged 4 and above

High Adventure Trips

Do you need more the ‘family fun whitewater’ to get your fix?  Check our our early season Class IV rafting trips and experience Shotgun rapid and ‘The Dam’ up-close and personal.  This trip is great for active, adventurous guests.  No prior experience is necessary.  As we get into July, the water drops and the Inflatable Kayak Trips explode in popularity for our high adventure seeking clients.

Inflatable Kayak Trips

As the water drops, the Inflatable kayaking on the Salmon heats up.  Inflatable Kayaks are stable river kayaks appropriately nicknamed duckys as they mimic ducks bobbing down the rapids.   This is the most active, physically fun activity we offer all summer long.  You get to choose your own adventure!  Take the “sneak” through the big rapids and enjoy the views, or paddle hard straight into the rapids and baptize yourself in crystal clear Salmon river water.  No experience necessary.  Ages 13+. Physically active.



Planning a vacation in Stanley, Idaho?

The holidays seem to bring a fury of questions about the river, visiting Stanley and exploring the Sawtooths. I felt it was a prime opportunity to help. After 20 years of helping friends, family and guests plan summer vacations in the Sawtooths here are a few recommendations.

Adventure awaits…



Photo By Lee Cohen

Stanley, Idaho Vacation Tips & Hints

1. Plan early, lodging is your crux. Stanley’s saving grace to staying the small, chill mountain town Mecca…a limited amount of lodging. Stanley is a stunning place and as Boise grows (fastest growing city in the US!) finding lodging in Stanley will only get more difficult. Many places, once your in…your in and they will include you in any early booking opportunities.  You can find a complete listings of ALL Stanley, Idaho lodging here

2. We joke….Do you know there are only 2 seasons in Stanley? Winter and July.

No doubt July is a breathtaking month in Stanley.   June, August and September are also amazing and offer the same number of amenities and SIGNIFICANTLY less people. Planning your vacation outside of the month of July will significianly open up your lodging options, WAY less people at Redfish beach and a much shorter line at the Bakery.

3. Rule of thumb…June is Whitewater & hot springs. August and September means lake living, Mountain Biking & Fly Fishing.

4. If you have visited Redfish Lake Lodge you understand why it is our favorite place in the valley. At the same time, it gets very, very busy. Weekends are exceptionally buzzing as the weekenders escape the heat of Boise and fill out campgrounds to capacity. If you want stay at Redfish you will need to make reservations in early September for the following summer. Campgrounds reserve out 6 months in advance.

5. All this talk about avoiding July, I feel a little guilty. Why… Because 4th of July in Stanley is AMAZING!  The whitewater is pumping, trails are in prime condition, the valley is GREEN and nightly live music at Stanley’s  Velvet Falls Dance Hall.   Not to mention, our favorite little town throws a BIG birthday party for America!.  Stanley Idaho’s 4th of July  is world-class and  should be on everyone’s bucket list.    Old fire engines, horse drawn wagons, kids on bikes and a HUGE water fight between rafts companies, all  topped off with an amazing firework show under the Sawtooths.    

Seasonal Supervisor Position in Stanley, Idaho

Transportation Manager- A seasonal, full time management level position in a positive, fun, high paced, physically active work environment.  Position is located in the hidden gem of Stanley, Idaho, the Salmon River and the Sawtooth Mountains.

Duration: May 23-Sept 3rd
Compensation: $6500-$9000
Tips additional. Housing is available.

Job Description:

  • Manage Sawtooth Adventure Company’s fleet of vehicles and trailers
  • Daily transportation of staff and rafting guests to/from the river.
  • Daily driving of a school bus with a trailer
  • Facilitate parking for guests when they arrive in Stanley.
  • Manage multiple teams of river guides, loading trailers, rigging boats etc.
  • Responsible to manage guide teams in order to maintain daily schedule.
  • Responsible for pre-trip client photos, taking pictures,organizing images, creating cd’s, copying image discs and selling Picture discs for commission.

Skills Required:

  • Commercial Driver’s License (Class B) training provided if necessary.
  • Clean Driving Record.
  • MUST be a people person.  Friendly, outgoing and the ability maintain the highest level of customer service and interaction at all times.
  • Ability to manage & motivate seasonal employees.
  • This is an active position requiring lifting.
  • Basic Interest and understanding of digital photography and operating a PC.
  • Comfortable problem solving and making decisions
  • Leardership skills and qualities

2018 Sun Valley & Stanley Idaho Rafting Update

Hello river friends,

Spring is attempting to grab hold in the Sawtooth Valley and the summer rafting season is on the horizon.  The perfect time for a SAC spring update.

BIG NEWS….We have moved!  Starting this summer Sawtooth Adventure Company will be at 710 Ace of Diamonds.  We are very excited about our new downtown Stanley location.  Honored to adopt the 100 year old and iconic McCoys Tackle Shop building at the intersection of Niece Ave & Ace of Diamonds. We are excited to join the fun including Thursday night street parties, 4th of July parades and the general hustle & bustle of Stanley’s historic business district on Ace of Diamonds Avenue.  


Idaho Snowpack

The 2017/18 snowpack in the Sawtooths has hovered near average nearly all winter long.  This is the 2nd winter in a row where central Idaho got lucky.  We have received far more snow than many other areas in the west and Idaho’s river conditions are looking perfect for the upcoming rafting season.

Class III Family Rafting Trips

SAC’s Class III family rafting trips will be available June 3-September 2nd.  Our ever-popular Whitewater Trip with Lunch will start June 16th and last through the season.  Guests can expect an update 2018 lunch menu and adding some comfy improvements to our riverside lunch camp.  Book Online

Class IV High Adventure Whitewater Rafting Trips

This year’s snowpack will offer action packed Class IV whitewater on all of our High Adventure Trips.  These trips historically last June thru early July and offer an adrenaline filled adventure for guests 13 years and older.  Book Online


Stanley Fly Fishing

SAC’s fly fishing division, Salmon River Anglers has moved to the Stanley Fly Shop at 166 Niece Ave.  Check out for guided float fishing trips in the Stanley, Idaho area. 

Stanley SUP

Sawtooth Adevnture Company offers a variety of SUP rentals for area rivers and lakes.  SAC’s River SUP trip is a great experience for active guests and families interested in learning the river SUP technique.

Stanley Mountain Biking

The popularity of mountain biking in the Sawtooth valley has exploded the past few years.  This is due to hundreds of miles of maintained single track trails in the area.  SAC guide mountain biking trips are catered to active families eager to learn and explore. 



August 21, 2017 Solar Eclipse in Stanley, Idaho Salmon River

Photo By Lee Cohen

Join Sawtooth Adventure for a once in a lifetime opportunity. Enjoy appetizers and champagne as you witness the magical solar eclipse while you the float the mellow waters of the famous Salmon River of No Return.  Viewing glasses will be provided.  In order to maximized the experience we are have an 8 boat limit.  

Location: Sawtooth Adventure Company, Hwy 75, Lower Stanley

Cost: $800 per boat (6 people max per boat).  Additional IK, or SUP available.  Call for details.  

Time: 10:30 meet time.  Rafts will depart the shore from Sawtooth Adventure promptly at 11:00am.  We will find a quiet, beautiful spot to pull over and view the Full Eclipse.

**Due to high demand and limited availability  payment is due in full at time of reservation. No refunds for Late Arrival, No Shows or Cancellations.  We highly recommend carefully planning your travel to/from Stanley  **. 

Please select August 21 on the calendar to book online.