Peshtigo River Whitewater Rafting Trips Spring

Peshtigo River Rafting

Peshtigo Spring Run-Off Trips Class III – IV

Spring whitewater rafting trips run from early April to mid-May, when the water is chilly but very fast and exciting. Spring whitewater rafting trips include Farmer John style wetsuits and booties along with helmets, life jackets and paddles, and are run in four, six and eight place rafts. On spring trips it is very important to advise everyone in your group to bring an unlined windbreaker, wool or synthetic pullover sweater and wool socks. Also, a polypropylene long underwear top is an excellent addition to your cold weather gear.

Check in time is one hour before scheduled whitewater rafting trip time. Spring trips are very popular because the die-hard rafters like to go when the water is the highest. Snow melt coupled with spring thaws usually makes April and May the best for big water whitewater rafting in Wisconsin. It may be chilly, but you will keep warm with the provided wetsuit and the excitement.

Peshtigo River Level

Peshtigo River Wabeno, WI

  • Water Temp: 52.7 ° F
  • Flow: 1720 ft³/s
  • Water Level: 6.33 ft

The Peshtigo River

We run our Peshtigo River raft trips on the “Roaring Rapids” section of the Peshtigo River. This 4 1/2 mile section of the river has seven major rapids and is rain fed, meaning there are no man made dams or natural obstructions which hold back or control the flow of the water. Therefore Mother Nature is completely in charge of the water levels and as a result they are constantly changing.

There is no real way for anyone to accurately predict what the water level will be on any given day throughout the year, typically the water is at it highest in the Spring months (April-May) then the levels gradually decreases as the summer runs on. The river levels can rise as much as 4 inches for every 1-inch of rain that falls into the water shed and can fall up to an inch per day when there is no rain, that is until the river reaches -3 on the gauge. Then the river only loses 1/10th -1/20th of an inch per day. There are many other factors which effect the water levels such as snowfall, accumulated snow and ice on the ground, ice levels in the river, frost depth and the ground water table levels.

We have seen high and low water at all times of the year and there is no time when the river will consistently be at a certain level. So we are always prepared to run a variety of different sized rafts to help ensure the best possible run at any level.

This gauge is designed to give you an idea of the size of raft we are most likely to run with at different water levels. There are other factors besides water levels that we also take into consideration when determining the size of raft and number of people in each raft, they include the size, condition and experience levels of the rafters as well as the weather and water conditions and temperatures.

For those of you who do not know, a Funyak is a 1-person self-bailing raft. These are a thrill in higher water and great for lower water levels. Funyaks are perfect for even first timers and beginners, in fact they are easier to learn how to paddle than a raft. You’ll get a double-bladed kayak paddle and full instruction before the trip. Because you are alone in the raft you have more control, you don’t have to try to coordinate your paddling skills with others in the raft. Being alone also means there is less weight in the raft, which makes it easier to move around or off obstacles if you should encounter some. Just keep in mind that even though you are alone in the raft you are never alone on the river, we always have staff on hand with every trip happy to assist you.


The Peshtigo River Trip

The Peshtigo River located in Silver Cliff, Wisconsin is the premier whitewater run in the Midwest. Known as the “Roaring Rapids”, this five mile stretch of the Peshtigo River includes six major rapids with multiple holes, waves and eddies, and provides a great whitewater experience for first time rafters as well as experienced paddlers. From start to finish one encounters almost continuous rapids interrupted by very short, quiet pools.

The put-in for the rafting trips on the Peshtigo River is at the Farm Dam Landing. There is no longer a dam at this site. This is the recommended put-in in higher water. During lower water, there is another put-in a little further down river that avoids a stretch of rock gardens. For about one and a half miles before the first set of names rapids, you will encounter a mix of rock gardens and flat water as well as intermittent Class II rapids.

First Drop Rapids (Class III-IV) This drop changes character greatly with the different water levels and, for it’s size, First Drop is a fairly technical rapid. It is a series of three ledges with a big side curling wave in the center that has caused many a spill. The natural flow of the river takes you right into the hole at most levels. The challenge for many, is to hit the wave and not flip. (Some boaters flip on purpose, it’s a short wavy swim to a calm pool below the rapids).

Second Drop Rapids (Class II-III) Second Drop Rapids can be seen from First Drop. Second Drop is not as technical as First Drop, but at higher levels there is a nice wave wall to paddle through.

Third Drop (Class III) The Third Drop Rapid is followed closely by the infamous wave called ‘Joey’s Hole’ that will easily trap the unwary (and sometimes the wary) in high water. Paddle Hard!

Five Foot Falls Rapid (Class III+) Five Foot Falls Rapid consists of  a river-wide ledge and a chute on the far left. Traditionally, rafters take a line on far river left down the twisting chute, but a straight line right down center river is possible as well.

Horserace Rapids (Class III-IV) Horserace Rapids is the longest, most continuous rapid in the Roaring Rapids section of the Peshtigo River, running about 150 yards. It starts out with some easy waves, then throws some eddies and holes at you, and finishes up with a wave train through a narrow constriction of the river.

S-Curve (Class II-III) Follow shortly after Horserace is S-Curve. As the name implies, S-Curve Rapid is a curvy section of rapids and includes a submerged ledge and a good hole. More wavy Class I-II rapids continue for several hundred yards downstream after S-Curve, and then there is a final section of flat water before the bridge and the take-out.


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Peshtigo Spring

Whitewater Rafting Trips

Early April thru thru Mid-May

$50.00 per person

Friday, Saturday, Sunday & Holidays

$45.00 per person

Monday thru Thursday

Peshtigo River Spring

Rafting Equipment

Peshtigo River Spring

Spring rafting trips include

helmet, life jacket, paddle,

wetsuit & booties

Spray Jacket: $5.00 per person

Paddle Gloves: $5.00 per person

Peshtigo River Spring

Rafting Trip Times

Spring Peshtigo Trips

Saturday: 9:00 am, 12:00 pm & 3:00 pm

Sunday: 10:00 am & 1:00 pm

Monday thru Friday: 12:00 pm

Trips last 1 to 3 hours

Check-in is 1 hour before trip time

Peshtigo River Spring

Peshtigo Spring

Whitewater Rafting Trips

Minimum 90 lbs & 10 years old

Escorted by experienced guides

Rain fed River

Funyaks available on Peshtigo River

Peshtigo River Spring


  • All rafters must be in good physical condition and unafraid of the water.
  • Persons with any disabilities or medical restrictions, (such as Pregnancy, Obesity, Heart condition, etc.) or have any limitations which would prohibit them from participating in a strenuous physical activity should not raft.
  • We reserve the right to refuse service to any person we feel is unfit for the trip.
  • Children should be 10 years of age and 90 lbs for the Peshtigo River and the Menominee River. In cases of changing water levels, age limits may be higher.
  • All rafters should be prepared for all weather conditions as well as all river conditions.
  • Size of raft and number of people per raft are determined on the day of the trip.
  • Rafters on the Peshtigo trips should be prepared to go in the one-person funyaks if water conditions are low.
  • All safety equipment issued by Kosir’s Rapid Rafts for the trip must be worn at all times.
  • Footwear is required on all trips. Shoes should be fastened securely to the foot and over the heel.
  • No bare feet or loose fitting shoes will be allowed. An old pair of gym shoes are best.
  • No containers of any kind will be allowed (coolers, cans, backpacks etc.) on the trips.
  • No intoxicating liquor or illegal drugs will be allowed on the rafts, or consumed during trips.
  • All Rafters must sign a Raft Rental Agreement and Release of Liability form.
  • Rafters under 18 years of age must also have a parent/legal guardian sign the Raft Rental Agreement and Release of Liability. (Group leaders, Siblings, Relatives, Scout Leaders, Pastors etc. ARE NOT legal guardians)
  • Although we take every precaution to make our trips safe and enjoyable, there are elements of danger in white water rafting; thus you must travel at your own risk.We reserve the right to refuse service to any person
  • We reserve the right to have the final say in all matters pertaining to the trips and to amend policies at any time.
  • All trips and rates subject to change without notice.
  • Group leaders are responsible for providing all persons in their group with all information.
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