The Arkansas River is some of the baddest whitewater kayakingin North America and also has some of the most family-friendly whitewater rafting anywhere. "The Ark" begins near Leadville, Colorado and flows south through the Upper Arkansas River Valley. The area near Buena Vista is an outdoors aficionado's paradise with numerous fourteener peaks in the Collegiate Peaks, road cycling, mountain biking, trail running, climbing, bouldering, hiking, and much more. In winter, Alpine, Nordic, and backcountry skiing & snowboarding and snowshoeing are available. The floor of the Valley from Buena Vista to Salida has a pretty mild climate year-round and for this reason is sometimes called the Banana Belt. You can go skiing or snowshoeing on the west side of the Valley or rock climb, mountain bike, hike, etc. on the east side on many winter days Buena Vista has one of the world's great outdoor shops, The Trailhead. They are really willing to help you out with whatever you need, including information about places to go.
Kim - "We're going on a rafting vacation this summer on the Arkansas River in Colorado."
Martha - "WOW! That's great! There is so much to do there too! Make sure you visit The Trailhead in Buena Vista, they'll set you up - check them out online before you go."