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San Juan River

Lake, River, or Waterfall
Floating the San Juan River with Wild Rivers Expeditions – Wild Rivers Expeditions

The San Juan River originates in the high San Juan Mountains in southern Colorado and cuts across the southwestern corner of Colorado within sight of the Four Corners Monument before it enters Utah where it flows, tumbles, and splashes along the Navajo Tapestry Formation, through the Goosenecks of the San Juan, and finally disappears beneath the azure waters of Lake Powell. River trips include floating through the Goosenecks of the San Juan, the largest entrenched river meander in North America. Day long hiking adventures include trips from the river into Johns, Slickhorn, and Grand Gulch canyons.

Flows on the river are partially regulated by Navajo Reservoir. The San Juan River offers easy float trips with stunning scenery and many archaeological and rock art sites on its shore. Float trips are regulated by the BLM and access by self-guided river runners requires a permit for any section of the river between Montezuma Creek and Clay Hills Crossing near Lake Powell during the high season.

Wild Rivers Expeditions from Bluff, Utah offers day and longer trips on the San Juan River with an emphasis on the human and natural history of the watercourse.

Pet Friendly Notes

It is not recommended that you take pets on the river. Pets are allowed on the shore of the river but visitors with pets are asked to clean up after them in order to allow a positive experience for those following. Please do not allow pets to chase wildlife.

Recreational Opportunities

Kayaking and rafting along the river, camping, hiking, exploring pre-historic sites.


Seasons Accessible

Year round although most activity takes place between March and November.


Contact BLM Monticello office for permits and river flow information

Nearby Places