Canoe Black Canyon on the Colorado River

Willow Beach

This amazing canoe trip features incredible canyon walls, hot springs, waterfalls, (sauna) caves, hiking trails, and much more.

This 10-mile canoe trip starts at Willow Beach and reaches all the way to the Hoover Dam, giving you front row seats to beautiful canyon walls, waterfalls, hot springs, (sauna) caves, hiking trails, and much more. 

There are multiple campsites along the river but not all have pit toilets so bring your own TP and prepare to wag-bag it. 

There is lots of opportunity for cliff jumping, however, the canyon walls consist of sandstone which tend to be very crumbly. Also, the water level changes frequently so don't assume your canoes are safe! The scenery is unbelievable and in my experience, not packed with people. I did this trip with an outdoor club at my school so the canoes were provided. You can kayak up the river if you do not have access to canoes. The campsite in the photo is called Arizona Hot Springs and there are hot springs right behind the camp! You do not need a permit to use the river. There are maps available to you at the Willow Beach Convenience Store. The campsite is very family/dog friendly! 

Pack List

  • Soft backpack or soft bag (day pack for on canoe)
  • Sleeping bag (should be rated to keep you warm to a temperature of 30°F)
  • Tent with rain fly
  • Plastic ground sheet (to keep your tent/gear clean)
  • Ensolite pad or Thermarest (sleeping pad that will insulate you from the cold ground)
  • Headlamp/ Flashlight (with new batteries)
  • Pocket knife
  • 1 cup, 1 bowl, 1 plate, knife, fork and spoon
  • Personal hygiene items (toothbrush, etc.)
  • Toilet paper (in a plastic bag)
  • Water bottle 
  • Several (3- 4) large plastic bags to double wrap your equipment
  • Sunscreen (minimum rating of 15 SPF)
  • Special First Aid supplies according to your specific needs
  •  Waterproof rain jacket/suit or poncho
  • Windbreaker (your waterproof layer can double for this if it is durable)
  • 2 pairs of footwear, (one to get wet and one to stay dry)
  • Medium weight jacket, heavy sweater or down jacket.
  • 1 warm hat/beanie (for cold evenings)
  • 1 set of base layers (tops and bottoms, capelin or polypropylene)
  • Sunglasses
  • Brimmed hat or visor
Show More
RT Distance 20 Miles
Activities Canoeing, Camping, Photography
Skill Level Intermediate
Season Spring, Summer, Autumn
Trail Type Out-and-Back
Family Friendly
Hot Springs
Cliff Jumping


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Overall rating: 

Love It!

Love this trip do it every year in October with my wife and kids 3 days on the river, we use desert adventures and they are excellent.

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