strenuous activity until they are fully
acclimated to the region and are cleared
by a doctor. Immediately engaging in
such activity puts one at the risk of altitude
sickness, when the body removes enough
carbon dioxide but doesn’t take in
enough oxygen. Symptoms include loss of
appetite, nausea, vomiting, dizziness,
fatigue or weakness and persistent rapid
pulse, to name a few.
WHITE WATER RAFTING
Colorado’s rafting industry is especially
vibrant. In 2010, rafters logged an
amazing half-million user days (a paying
guest on a river for any part of a
day) between April and September,
according to the Summit Voice.
In all, Colorado rafting outfitters frequent
more than 20 rivers across eight major
basins in the state, with the Colorado and
Arkansas rivers attracted the most visitors
between 2009 and 2010 while
maintaining a capacity for more. Still,
other rivers in the state have use limits and
have seen their numbers stabilize.
Overall, the sheer number of rivers where
white water rafting is available presents a
great deal of opportunity for all
Coloradans to practice their affection for
rafting. In fact, most people are within an
easy day’s drive of a rafting vacation that
suits their tastes. The rafting season in
Colorado begins when rivers start to flow
in May, peaking by mid-June at the latest.
Good water flow continues into the fall.
Rafting on desert rivers could begin as
early as late April, because they tend to
start running earlier than those rivers at
higher elevation. In either case, the
bigger the desired white water, the earlier
in the season one should go.
For more information on rafting outfitters,
HIKING AND MOUNTAIN BIKING
While the nearby Rocky Mountains
provide visitors with hundreds of miles of
hiking trails to take in the region’s natural