Let’s Look at Grand Canyon Boats

Types of Grand Canyon Boats

When learning about the different options for Grand Canyon boating, it is helpful to know what types of  Grand Canyon boats there are to choose from. Knowing the difference between boats will assist you with picking the best adventure for you and your group.

Oar Raft: An oar raft is an 18 foot long rubberized raft where the guide is stationed in the center of the raft and he or she rows the boat with 11 foot oars. The boat can seat up to approximately 4 additional guests.

Grand Canyon Boats: Oar Raft Grand Canyon

Oar Raft by Ralph Hopkins

Paddle Raft: A paddle raft is an 18 foot long rubberized raft which is powered by a group of six paddlers sitting on the side tubes and using paddles to power the boat. The rafting guide, also known as the “paddle captain,” sits at the rear of the raft. The paddle captain will call out commands and steer the boat to maneuver the craft confidently through the strong current in the flat water and the fast moving whitewater.

Paddle Boat Colorado River

Paddle Boat by Ralph Hopkins

Motorized Raft: The motorized raft is a 32-34 foot long custom designed rubberized raft powered by a quiet, four stroke outboard motor. This boat can comfortably seat up to 15 guests.

Grand Canyon Boats: J Rig

“J” rig motor boat

Grand Canyon Boats; Motorized Raft Colorado River

S Rig” Motor Boat by Ralph Hopkins









Dory Boat: The dory is a rigid boat made of wood, fiberglass or aluminum seating a guide in the middle of the boat where he or she rows the boat with 10 foot oars. The boat can accommodate up to four guests and its historical design is often consider the “classic” way to run the river.

Grand Canyon Boats: Dory Boat Colorado River

Dory Boat by Ralph Hopkins