OK so you booked a whitewater rafting trip with your friends on an awesome river. You’re super stoked to be going on an amazing whitewater adventure. You show up at the outfitter’s camp, they give you a safety orientation, and introduce you to your guide. Now you really want to make the trip special, but how do you communicate that to your guide? Well here is a quick rundown on how to work with your guide to make sure that trip is really memorable.
Hopefully you did your homework with the outfitter and selected an outfitter that actually lets you have fun rather than the cattle-car of a raft trip that you could buy on a daily deal site. This is the first step to having a good trip and you can find out more about outfitter selection in our 8 things to ask a rafting company article. Next you want to understand who your guide is.
The Trip Leader
First you want to know if you are in the Trip Leader’s boat. The Trip Leader is generally the most experienced full time guide on the trip, but this is not always a good thing for you unless you are rafting with the kids or grandma. Since the Trip Leader is responsible for almost every aspect of the trip including every guest, there is a really low chance that this person will be able to relax enough to let you play on the river. While you are having fun jumping off rocks and swimming rapids, the Trip Leader is watching the flock like an overprotective shepherd. Luckily unless you are a group of hot girls, weak-looking paddlers, or rich-looking people, odds are you probably won’t be in the Trip Leader’s boat. Trip Leaders tend to cherry pick their crews since they are the ones who get to assign them. The good Trip Leaders (like the one pictured above) pick up the slack for the other guides, while the bad ones pick the crews that are most likely to tip or get them laid.
The Professional Staff Guide
The Professional Staff Guide is the core of the guide crew they work commercially sometimes 7 days a week throughout the summer and usually 3-5 days a week in the shoulder season. Typically these guides also do one of three things in the winter: travel, work at a ski resort, or work at another rafting company on the other side of the world. The good news is that Continue reading 4 Types of Guides You Will Meet Rafting ….
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DISCLAIMER: The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs, viewpoints or official policies of the IRF.