Georgina Preston

We are river family – meet Georgina Preston

Raft guide, raft racer, kayak instructor, environmentalist and river conservationist – there isn’t much that stops Georgina Preston (“Georgie”). This is part one of a two part interview as Georgie sets off on a new adventure – we’ll catch up with her on her returnIn part one, we find out what motivates her and how we can all get involved.

How long have you been rafting and how did you get into it?
I have been guiding for a shocking 18 years now and racing for 12 of those. I started guiding whilst studying at uni to help pay for my course. I was already a kayaker so it made sense to earn a bit of money by messing about on the water!

Georgina PrestonMost memorable river trip/moment?
My most memorable trip would have to be my first IRF World Rafting Championships in Ecuador, 2005. Going away to such an incredible country with a bunch of my best friends is what has kept me in this sport for so long.

Funniest / most ironic river moment?
I would say the funniest river moment was finding a tarantula in my kayak – I discovered we’d been sharing a space for an entire two hour Nile Special surf session.

You’ve recently been on a few adventures around the globe – some were focussing on river conservation/dam prevention – how can others help or support?
I joined Balkan Rivers Tour (now Balkan Rivers Defence – last year which is an incredible river conservation movement set up by local adventurers to highlight the importance of keeping our rivers wild and free. We paddled source to sea over 4 days, speaking and working with schools and communities along the way from Slovenia to Italy. BRD aims to protect the last wild rivers of Europe against 2,700 dams planned in the Balkans. Anyone can join the tour again this September. I would encourage everyone to join – paddle with great people, camp along the way, eat with locals, and of course – party hard.

What guidance or advice would you give to anyone starting out in rafting?
Have fun! And don’t try to start in winter. It’s a misery.

Georgina PrestonWhen will we see you next?
I’m currently on my way to Borneo as an expedition leader with a bunch of 16 year olds (what have I done?!). We’ll be volunteering in various jungle locations plus enjoying ourselves a bit by getting our PADI dive licences in those tropical waters! I’m also a training as a Combat Medic in the Army Reserves which will enable me to be a whizz tastic kayak raft expedition medic action girl. The Army have been fantastic supporting all my sporting efforts and training me up from scratch. I’m looking forward to lots more adventures with them!

Georgina Preston is one of our River Family. Are You?

#AreYouReady #RaftersAreAwesome #RiverFamily #StrongerTogether #WeAreIRF

We’re looking for more stories of River Family – if you have a story to tell, email us with your story and photos.