When people talk of the world’s greatest whitewater rivers the Rio Futaleufu is always somewhere near the top of everyone’s list. And for many people who have made the journey to Patagonia’s Futaleufu Valley the rafting is their highlight. The Futa is a big volume river, similar to the grand canyon in size, but steeper and with bigger rapids.
The river originates in Argentina then enters Chile and cuts through dramatic granite inner canyons set in a beautiful valley, bordered by glacier-laden peaks. The water itself is an unbelievable azure color that is virtually unheard of in a river of its size. The rapids feature endless trains of massive waves and blue-green ramps leading into huge frothy holes.
On our trip we begin with class III-IV+ rapids such as Entrada, and Mondaka. We then work our way up to the larger class V rapids such as the boulder-choked Casa de Piedra. Inverno Canyon is filled with big, tight, class V rapids in quick succession and leads into two mandatory portages of Zeta and Throne Room. Our final day of rafting takes us through the most continuous stretch of rapids including the infamous Terminator, a long complex rapid laced with huge holes.
Please note: For those who do not wish to raft the bigger rapids there are always plenty of alternative options.