A High Water Rafting Guide

High Water Rafting Guide

A high water rafting guide can help you prepare for the predictable high water spring river flows in Colorado. Let's just say your kayaker friends are giddy with excitement and anticipation of “high water,” throwing out names of rapids like Zoom Flume and features like Big Drop in Browns Canyon, the heart of whitewater addiction in Buena Vista, Colorado. You probably have seen graphs comparing this winter’s Colorado snowpack to previous historical seasons. Before you jump in with too much enthusiasm, review these tips for having a successful whitewater rafting trip on high waters. High Water Rafting with Rocky Mountain Outdoor Center

Tips for planning your ultimate high-water rafting trip.

1. Inquire about river sections and trip difficulty at higher water levels, and check the Safety Code of American Whitewater for a river classification and rating description. Always heed outfitter guidelines about minimum age or weight recommendations when bringing young children.

2. Be honest about every party member's health condition, swimming ability, and desired adventure level. Rafting is a team sport. Ensure everyone in your group is prepared for a high-water experience, including a swim through rapids in cold water.

High Water Rafting with Rocky Mountain Outdoor Center

3. Wear a wetsuit and snug river shoes. Some outfitters may have an extra charge for these items on day trips, but these items come FREE of charge at the Rocky Mountain Outdoor Center. Ask about what gear is provided when booking your trip - and how you can keep extra warm by bringing your own synthetic baselayers, fleece, and wool socks. Neoprene “booties” or river shoes will stay on your feet and also help keep your toes from freezing while bracing in the raft.

4. Listen to your guide. High-water rafting can be a thrilling, live-to-tell-about-it adventure for reasonably fit adults! Your raft guide will give detailed instructions on paddling and making the necessary moves. Feeling confident in your team’s ability to maneuver the raft through crashing waves is one of the best parts of high-water rafting!

High Water Rafting with Rocky Mountain Outdoor Center

High Water Rafting is Exhilarating, but be Cautious!

Once you have a few seasons of whitewater rafting under your belt, the allure of going bigger gets stronger. Paddling your way through extreme rapids with trusted friends can be a memorable and exhilarating experience. It's a time that you will reflect upon for years, but it's also very dangerous. These simple tips for high water rafting need to be taken seriously. Don't let your enthusiasm make light of river classifications or your group's skill levels. It's all really fun, but things can go wrong, so be cautious; better safe than sorry.

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