Rafting the Firth River to the Arctic Ocean

Regarded as the trip-of-a-lifetime by many, rafting the Firth River offers challenging Class IV rapids, epic canyons, breathtaking hikes, and many opportunities to view wildlife.

Rafting trips typically begin at Margaret Lake, located in the heart of the park. From there, the Firth River valley gradually narrows, funneling rafters into a succession of canyons – eventually ending at Nunaluk Spit on the coast of the Arctic ocean. Rafting trips can be done over the course of one or two weeks.

Along the way, rafters have the chance to see wildlife, fish for Dolly Varden char, pull ashore to hike jagged ridgelines, or explore Engigstciak – a dramatic peak rising from the coastal plain that hunters have used to scan the horizon for more than 9,000 years.

    About the Firth River

    The Firth River is the oldest flowing river in Canada, as the landscape that is now Ivvavik National Park was never glaciated. The river flows through four distinct regions of the park and offers an incredible way to discover the classic wilderness of the area. The stunning scenery is characterized by unique geological features, varying elevations, Arctic plant life, and periods of calm and rough water. Often there are opportunities to see wildlife such as muskoxen, caribou, eagles, and falcons that nest in the overhead cliffs and tors.

    Length: 132 km from Margaret Lake. 106 km runs entirely in the British Mountains.

    Elevation drop: approximately 460 meters.

    Photo gallery

    Photo: Tyler Garnham

    Photo: Tyler Garnham

    Photo: Drew Davidson

    Photo: Drew Davidson

    Photo: Drew Davidson

    Photo: Tyler Garnham

    Photo: Drew Davidson

    Photo: Tyler Garnham

    Photo: Tyler Garnham

    Photo: Tyler Garnham

    Photo: Drew Davidson

    Photo: Tyler Garnham

    Photo: Tyler Garnham

    Photo: Tyler Garnham

    Photo: Drew Davidson

    Photo: Drew Davidson

    Photo: Tyler Garnham

    Photo: Drew Davidson

    Photo: Drew Davidson

    Photo: Tyler Garnham
    Featured experience

    Join the researchers

    For the keen learners, you can raft the Firth River alongside Parks Canada staff and expert guides from Canadian River Expedition. Together, you will collect research samples that will help Parks Canada monitor the health of the park.

    Rafting with researchers gives visitors the opportunity to learn about the deep connections Inuvialuit have with Ivvavik National Park and gain a true appreciation for the work Inuvialuit and Parks Canada conduct together to share and care for this special place.

    Plan your trip

    Plan your guided river trip with a licensed commercial operator.

    Canadian River Expedition
    Nahanni River Adventures
    1-800-297-6927

    Organise your own trip (experienced rafters only).

    Contact Parks Canada for more information on available dates, how to obtain a permit, and safety requirements.

    Phone: 1-867-777-8800

    Email: infoinuvik-inuvikinfo@pc.gc.ca