Half-Day Float

Family fun

Easy paddling rating

2-2.5 hours duration

A river trip that will leave your kids begging for more! For those with younger children (5 and over), our half-day adventure is just right – not too long, not too short. Let our expert guides enthrall your family with stories of the wild outdoors as we take you down Big Bend for a nature experience like no other.


Trip Details


$79/per person
Half-day river trips require a 20% non-refundable deposit with the balance due 5 days prior to the date of the trip.

Click to see available discounts

Children 12 and younger receive a $5/child discount on all river trips.
Discounts are available for parties of 8 or more booking at the same time.

Required minimum age

5 years old


Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. Trips depart twice a day at 8:00 a.m. & 1:00 p.m.
* Please note, there are no 1:00 p.m. departures May 1 – September 30 & no 8:00 a.m. departures December 1 – February 28.

Minimum group size

4 people

Meeting point

Far Flung Outdoor Center. Click here to see how to find us.

Duration & return time (to Far Flung Outdoor Center):

Approximately 4 hours (2-2.5 hours on the river)


Easy; paddling is required on trips traveling by kayaks

About the kayak/raft

Sit on top kayaks or rafts, depending on water levels

Click to find out more

We predominantly use single kayaks, but in cases with small kids, we use the few double kayaks we have. Kids must be 18 or older to go by themselves. Minors below 18 have to have a parent or guardian with them.

About the guide

Certified in wilderness first aid and CPR, our guides are outdoor enthusiasts with many years’ experience of running rivers. They’ll haul the gear and, with a little encouragement, even provide entertainment. Realizing that personal involvement increases one’s enjoyment of a trip, they will welcome your interest in learning how to row, paddle, or better understand the desert plant and animal life. Our staff will enrich your experience by sharing their knowledge of Big Bend’s extensive natural and human history.

Family Fun on the Rio Grande

Brace yourself for some epic, belly-laughter family fun on this half-day float! To start the trip off, your expert guide will greet you with our warm southern welcome, fit you with a PFD (personal flotation device or life jacket), and issue you with a waterproof bag to store items such as extra clothing, camera, sunscreen, wallets, and other personal items. Since safety is our number one objective – followed by fun! – we’ll take a few more minutes to brief you and the other guests about specific river safety topics.

Pushing off the bank, we’ll begin making our way downstream. Nothing Olympic, just nice easy strokes coached, if needed, by our staff. Big Bend is a nature lover’s dream, nothing but blue skies and pure wilderness as we leisurely float down this historic and simply breathtaking river. Sharing stories about the river and Big Bend is what we’re all about, so stay close to our guides if you like tales of the outdoors. We encourage you to bring a camera and a pair of binoculars along for the ride – we bet you won’t want to miss snapping the incredible desert vistas, towering mountains, and all the wildlife and nature that comes with journeying through the one and only Big Bend!


*Our snacks vary based on current supplies, but expect a sampling of fruit, crackers, cheese, chips, or dips. Iced water will be available throughout the trip with tea and lemonade mixes available during the snack.

What to bring

Comfortable, loose fitting clothing

Light jacket in cooler months

River sandals or old tennis shoes

Hat, sunglasses, sunscreen

Camera & binoculars

Water bottle

Your own supply of soft drinks (no glass, please!)

Small ice chest (no foam chests, please!)

Frequently Asked Questions

Are there bathrooms?


Because the trip will take us through primitive areas of Big Bend, bathroom facilities are limited. The put-ins and take-outs along the half-day section have compost type toilets. Our guides will carry a basic toilet system, but your choice of restroom will be “pink or blue” bushes or large rocks. You will have access to the Far Flung Outdoor Center restrooms before and after the trip.

Do I need a passport or other documentation?


You will NOT need a passport or any form of identification to float the Rio Grande, however, due to Homeland Security regulations, we won’t be stopping on the Mexican side of the river for hikes, snacks, or other activities.

If you are NOT a U.S. citizen, we strongly advise you to bring your passport, visa or other related documentation which will not be required on the river but will be needed to clear Border Patrol checkpoints on your way out of the Big Bend area.

Tell me about the Far Flung store.


We have a retail store complete with t-shirts, shorts, hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, water bottles, and many other outdoor accessories. Our store will be open before and after your trip in the event you need to purchase any last minute article or trip mementos.

What is your cancellation policy?


Half-day river trips require a 20% non-refundable deposit with the balance due 5 days prior to the date of the trip. Cancellations 5 days prior to departure forfeit the deposit amount. Cancellations (including no-shows) within 5 days of the trip departure forfeit the entire cost of the trip.
It is rare that FFOC will cancel a trip, but in the event we do, all money (including deposits) will be refunded.

What about changes to the schedule?


FFOC reserves the right to alter, modify or cancel any trip or a portion of any trip due to weather, water levels or the safety and convenience of our guests. It is the intent of FFOC to operate the river tours in cases where the safety of our guests is not compromised. Guests should appreciate that inclement weather may not be cause for a trip cancellation.

What are the terms and conditions?


Trip participants must understand and appreciate that river rafting, canoeing and wilderness travel involve certain inherent risks. These risks include, but are not limited to, loss of or damage to personal property, personal injury, or fatality resulting from: capsize of raft or canoe, collision with a vehicle, vessel, rock, log, tree, or other obstacles; falling while aboard a raft; accident or illness in remote places with limited or no medical facilities; and exposure to temperature extremes or inclement weather.
We require all of our guests to sign an agreement and acknowledgment of risk before taking the trip. From time to time, we use photographs and videos of our trips for promotional and business purposes. By going on our trip, you consent to the use of your image, without compensation, for FFOC marketing activities. See you on the river!

Fresh coffee & merch

While you’re at the Far Flung Outdoor Center, start your day off right by indulging in a fresh cup of coffee, homemade muffins, bagels, and kolaches at our on-site coffee shop. Once you’re recharged and ready to go, head on over to our retail shop, pick up some merch, and head out into Big Bend wearing your new threads!