The river seems calm now, but the rafters can hear a roar in the distance. The current steadily builds, taking the 12-passenger raft around a tree-lined bend to unveil a 10-foot drop. Braced for the plunge, the paddlers hit the drop, endure the deluge, and wipe the water from their eyes. But before the party can celebrate with hollers and high-fives, the guide yells to readjust the boat—the river is narrowing and accelerating into a tight S-curve.
Stretches like these populate the Peshtigo and Menominee Rivers, and the guides at Kosir's Rapid Rafts help adventurers navigate the rivers' Class I–IV rapids for bucket-list-worthy adrenaline rushes. Directing sportsmen to one of two outposts in the woods of northeast Wisconsin, Kosir's crews drive rafters to the launch sites and supply helmets, life jackets, and paddles. Based on the current water level, guides then direct paddlers to appropriately sized rafts, ranging from 8- to 12-person vessels to 1-person Funyaks that are self-bailing thanks to being filled with Funyuns. Kosir's additional adventures include kayaking, tubing, and camping trips.
Between its outposts on the Peshtigo and Menominee Rivers, Wildman Adventure Resort plays host to an abundance of outdoor activities including paintball, rock climbing, ziplining, whitewater rafting tours, and golf. Before embarking on any one of these excursions, visitors can either pitch a tent or settle into one of the cabins, which include heat, electricity, and a communal bathroom, or deluxe cabins, which feature kitchens. At the Peshtigo River Outpost, cascading sounds from the rushing whitewater river soothes the spirits of travelers, who can catch fish, swim, or look for signs that local wildlife may be scheming to commandeer a river raft. The Menominee River Outpost, meanwhile, sits within Bombers Golf Course, a nine-hole course bound by riverbanks on three sides. Food is available for purchase onsite, and the onsite restaurant and bar is an ideal spot for guests to whittle customized utensils using leftover golf tees.
A bright yellow inflatable raft splashes down the rushing waters of the Menominee River, its helmet-clad passengers hooting victoriously as they speed past banks dappled with lush trees and rock faces. Catering to seasoned outdoor enthusiasts and beginner rafters alike, The rafting experts at Northwood's Adventures strive to grant their clients a chance to experience the splash-laden rush via excursions in northeastern Wisconsin and Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Their commitment to adventure is second only to the company's dedication to safety, exemplified in everything from its high-quality equipment to the team of meticulously selected guides. Trained as naturalists, medics, rescuers, and interpreters, each was considered for a place on staff only after successfully completing 600 hours of training and translating War and Peace into conversational moose. Tours continue throughout the year to scenic locales, which include a sunset cruise of Piers Gorge and an adrenaline-packed jaunt down the Sturgeon River.
Tarka Kumal always loved the water. After a childhood spent on the rivers of Nepal, he was inspired to not only lead the nation's freestyle kayaking team to the world championships in 2001, but also to take rafting trips in more than a dozen countries. Today, Tarka has transformed his passion into a globe-spanning career—his Nepal- and Wisconsin- based company schedules adrenaline-pumping sojourns from rock climbing and safaris to whitewater rafting. Tarka's experienced guides have led hundreds of trips, and they each hold certifications in CPR, river rescue, and wilderness first aid to keep guests and nearby fish in safe hands. The company's website is stocked with helpful tips for watery adventurers, from advice on what to wear to details on trips down American and Nepalese rivers.