10 Best Outdoor Adventures for Thrill-Seekers in The US

Seeing historical sights, visiting renowned museums, and tanning on infamous beaches make for fun-filled itineraries, but some travelers favor riskier behaviors on their schedules. We love to chase the thrill of free-falling, soaring through the mountains, and careening through narrow canyon cracks.

Best Outdoor Adventures for Thrill-Seekers 

Skydiving Couple
Image Credit Shutterstock.

We’ve compiled a list of the best G-force collecting attractions in the U.S. Bring your helmets and parachutes if you wish to embark on these incredible outdoor adventures for thrill-seekers.

1. Bobsled at Olympic Park in Park City, Utah

Bobsled at Olympic Park in Park City, Utah
Image Credit: Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation.

Guests enter the same seat as Olympians for a high-speed, fast-paced bobsled ride in Park City, Utah’s Olympic Park. The park features the course used in the 2002 Salt Lake Winter Olympics. It switches out winter ice paths for concrete replicas during the summertime, making this attraction perfect as a year-round destination. 

Each group is assigned a professional pilot who steers the four-person bobsled and instructs guests on safety precautions. The sled zips to up to 70 mph speeds in just under a minute and costs $100 per one-hour session.

2. Base Jumping Idaho I.B. Perrine Bridge in Twin Falls

Base Jumping Idaho I.B. Perrine Bridge in Twin Falls
Image Credit: Matt Baldelli.

Take a break from potato museums and botanical garden tours for a thrill-seeking base-jumping excursion. Base jumpers wear a wingsuit or a webbed jumpsuit allowing for gliding and launching off bridges, cliffs, or other starting points. Base jumpers catapult closer to the ground than skydivers but have a higher risk of injury since they carry one parachute instead of three. 

I.B. Perrine Bridge in Twin Falls, Idaho, a truss bridge over Snake River Canyon, is one of the remaining locations in the midwestern state that permits base jumpers year-round. Jumpers brave for the 486-foot fall with a tandem instructor who is attached to them and controls the parachute. Base jumping costs $250 per person. 

3. Cliff Camping, Rocky Mountains

Cliff Camping, Rocky Mountains
Image Credit: Airbnb.

This attraction is reserved for adrenaline chasers fostering a propensity for horror. The Rocky Mountain Cliff Camping Package includes a stay at the Stanley Hotel, the same lodge in Stephen King's terrifying novel The Shining

Each package includes rappelling instruction by a designated KMAC (Kent Mountain Adventure Center) guide, one night suspended 150 to 300 feet above the ground in a “portaledge” or a hanging tent, and one night stay at The Stanley Hotel. Participants rappel down the cliff to the tent for lunch, dinner, and a sweet stargazing session before snoozing on the side of the mountain. Each person pays $750 for the extravaganza.

4. Hydrospeed in Maine

Hydrospeed in Maine
Image Credit: Maine Rafting Expeditions.

Hydrospeeding, or riverboarding, blends white water rafting and bodysurfing. Hydrospeeders don life jackets, padded wetsuits, helmets, and flippers, plus the most important asset, a stabilized foam board with handles and a concave that prevents riders from debris and injury in the river. 

Riverboarding originated in the Alps. However, interested individuals can participate in the enticing activity in Millinocket, Maine, at Maine Rafting Expeditions. Each guest, accompanied by a knowledgeable instructor, selects the intensity and trails they wish to hydrospeed for $89 per person. 

5. Shark Cage Diving Jupiter, Florida

Shark Cage Diving Jupiter, Florida
Image Credit: Shark Diving Unlimited.

If the first thought that crossed your mind while watching 47 Meters Down (2017) was, “Wow, I wish I could cage dive with sharks, you’re in luck! Based in Jupiter, Florida, Florida Shark Diving hosts cage dives and free diving with sharks for marine life enthusiasts looking for danger. Captains set up cage divers with snorkels before locking them in the metal cage and lowering it beneath the surface. 

Captains drop the cage ten to fifteen feet below the ocean’s surface, permitting the divers a quick return to the air and a great view of several shark species. According to the website, shark species you may encounter in Florida include Tiger, Great Hammerhead, Scalloped Hammerhead, Bull, Dusky, Silky, Lemon, Sandbar, Blacktip, and Reef Sharks. Dives average $195 per person. 

6. Canyon Rappelling, Zion Park Utah

Canyon Rappelling, Zion Park Utah
Image Credit: Zion Guru.

Utah homes the most beautiful canyons in the U.S., so it’s only fair to include a Zion Canyon canyoneering voyage on this list. Choose between Rock Odyssey’s half-day canyoneering outings (four hours) or full-day galivants (eight hours). The scenery and terrain depend on the selected package.

Still, each canyon climb consists of a guide, transportation, equipment, a specialized course, hours of hiking trails, rappelling through slots, and marveling at Utah’s gorgeous natural wonders. More difficult tracks include wafting through water-filled valleys and arduous hikes. Prices range between $360 and $550 per person. 

7. The Giant Canyon Swing, Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park 

The Giant Canyon Swing, Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park
Image Credit: Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park.

This ride appeals to those a little scared of fastening a parachute to their person but still want to chase high g-force and weightlessness. The Giant Canyon Swing at the Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park offers an attraction towering 1,300 feet above the Colorado River and reaching 50 mph at the mountaintop amusement park. 

Four riders board and lock into the waist restraint for an almost vertical soar above the Rockies. Each passenger must complete a safety waiver before boarding the ride and pay park admission. 

8. Bungee Jump Rio Grande Bridge, New Mexico

Bungee Jumping
Image Credit: CoralyneH – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0 / Wiki Commons.

A steel arch bridge stretches 650 feet above the Rio Grande River, providing thrill chasers with an unforgettable bungee jump experience. This New Mexico sight is North of Taos, on the way to Santa Fe, making for a memorable destination or pit-stop to a larger trip.

Unfortunately, bungee participants cannot schedule a jump off this bridge this year due to military use, but jumpmasters eagerly await the return of daredevils. Each jump costs $500 per person.

9. Heli Ski, Alaska 

Heli Ski, Alaska
Image Credit: Dave Silver.

If you ski or snowboard, you know the more visitors per slope, the worse the conditions. Ski resorts create their own slushy or corny snow, which in turn ices over, and sometimes seasons could be better compared to others. Majestic Heli Ski sets up shop two hours away from the Anchorage International Airport, and with a heli-ski package, you receive transportation to and from the airport, lodging, equipment, and personalized helicopter trips to mountains full of undisturbed, powder-packed slopes. 

Heli-skiing is for those who want to avoid the crowded ski resort and splurge on the best conditions for winter sports. The assigned pilot lifts groups of up to four people into the sky and transfers them to the top of the inclines for a full day between six and ten runs down the slope. Packages range between $1,475 for a one-day trip and $13,300 for a one-week odyssey. 

10. Ice Climbing Matanuska Glacier, Alaska

Ice Climbing Matanuska Glacier, Alaska
Image Credit: Travel Alaska.

Maybe you grew up canyoneering or hiking throughout the mountains in your backyard, but you’re tired of the rocky terrain and want to fashion a new bold hobby. In the Matanuska-Susitna Borough of Alaska, you can ice climb the Mantanuska Glacier thanks to Matanuska Glacier Tours. To arrive at the glistening glacier, groups hurtle two miles over rocks, mud, ice, and snow to avoid crowds on the busier side of the glacier. 

Scheduled participants grab their ice picks and crampons and suit up with protective cold weather gear and a helmet before hiking or helicoptering to the glacier route. With instructor aid and the correct equipment, partakers scale the vertical glaciers and absorb the astounding backdrop of Alaska. Climbing costs $294 per person via hike or $499 per person for a helicopter-led ice climb.