If I weren’t already planning my own mountain adventure for this week, I’d seriously consider this. Speaking from limited experience, whitewater rafting is pretty fun. This activity will not only give the opportunity to learn how to raft the rapids, but will teach you how to lead such an adventure.
The following is from Bill Becquart of the Oklahoma City Outdoor Network. Read on, and if the urge hits you, sign up!
This is going to be a GREAT Learning Experience for anyone wanting to go Whitewater Rafting
Even if…you have no desire to lead a trip yourself
This will make you a much better and much safer rafter on your next rafting adventure
IF this trip interests you…please respond with a Yes or a Maybe
Also, although this is thru the OKC Outdoor Network, Non-Members are welcome on this outing
Whitewater Rafting – The Upper Colorado River (west of Denver, CO)
For $65 per day, per person (food not included)
OKC-ON Member John Bowen’s rafting company
“High Plains Outdoor Institute” will provide all the gear
(including cooking stuff to cook our food and the porta-potties),
the instruction and the guides
(his expenses are fuel, rafts, guides and insurance)
Where over a period of up to 4 days you will learn skills on
“How to Guide” a Whitewater Raft yourself on a Colorado river
(below is a description of the class)
The class below is for 4 days,
but for those people that can only do 2 or 3 days…it can still work for you !!
Since we will be camped at a particular spot, and the idea of the class
is to repeatedly run one section of the river so as to learn how,
then if someone wants to spend less time, we will be by their cars
quite a bit and they can leave whenever they need too
We are looking at the week of June 14
(w/the actual days/dates TBA)
The Rafting Class, Learning to Guide:
Venue: Upper Colorado River – Little Gore Canyon, Class II-III. groovers’), and their care and use. The session will finally involve rigging the boats, setting up the kitchen, and cooking for groups on a whitewater trip, including all the many government rules and regulations.
On this forgiving river, you will learn the basics of whitewater rafting on oar rafts and paddle boats, the same as professional guides that we train for our own trips where each person learns to be the captain. The four day trip will include safety, group “expedition behavior” (the health and safety of the group is the health and safety of the individual), rigging boats, reading the rapids on the river, learning about the physics of swift water, rescue, boatmanship, and how to command a paddle raft through rapids and the people skills necessary for a fun trip. Cooking, serving, and cleaning which are a big part of guiding, will also be included. Subjects are trained in all aspects of rafting from assembling the boats to reading rapids. The participants will learn all the skills to run the boats through forgiving rapids themselves, coached by professionals.
At the end of the class, the students will be required to run the river with all the rapids practiced, with the guides as coaches with veto power.
Proposed Preliminary Schedule:
Day 1 noon: Meet the students and teach the basic ethics of camping on the river, sanitation, rules, and expedition behavior. We will also discuss the logistics of a multi-day whitewater expedition, the difference between private and commercial trips, permits and other legalities. The theory of moving water and river obstacles will be presented, discussed, and safety considerations to work around them will be explained. We will also discuss camping, cooking, the mobile portapotties (the infamous ‘
Day 2-3 morning to evening: These days will teach and practice boatmanship and how and why a whitewater boat is run, both oared craft and paddle boats. We will also intensively cover swiftwater safety, self rescue techniques, swimming in swiftwater, as well as boatmanship, basics of reading whitewater, and river hazards how they work, how to scout and and what to do in them. We will discuss and practice bank and boat based rescue, flipped rafts and re-flipping the rafts. We will graduate to learning and practicing boat based rescue, and equipment extraction techniques including the z-drag, and rope based rescue techniques.
Day 4 Morning to noon: The students will pack, rig, embark and scout and run the final rapids, then de-rig the boats and load them into the trailers just as done on private trips. The guides will act as silent passengers with veto power. Boats will be de-rigged and returned to the trailers.