Best River

Brahmaputra, Arunachal Pradesh

Oct 27, 2006
Outside Magazine
River Boat

River Boat

In 2002, Vaibhav Kala, owner of Aquaterra Adventures, hatched an audacious plan to offer the first-ever commercial expedition down the 110-mile upper stretch of the Brahmaputra, which flows from Tibet through Arunachal Pradesh, in far northeastern India. Locally known as the Siang, the Class IV+ Brahmaputra rivals the Grand Canyon when it comes to whitewater, with the added attraction of exotic tribes that rarely see outsiders. Today, with other companies looking to follow Aquaterra's lead, the Brahmaputra float is on the verge of becoming India's splashiest big-water adventure.

Reaching the put-in remains a challenge unto itself, requiring a 50-mile upstream motorboat transfer from Dibrugarh, followed by a two-day jeep ride into the jungle of Arunachal Pradesh from neighboring Assam. Up next are seven days of wilderness paddling, with the verdant scenery punctuated by huge Class III–IV+ rapids on a scale more reminiscent of The Perfect Storm than The River Wild. DETAILS: For now, Aquaterra offers the only set departures on the Brahmaputra; November 24–December 8; kayaking from $3,100, rafting from $3,600; 011-91-11-29212641,

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