Choosing a Whitewater Outfitter
7 Rafting Tips for Choosing Your Whitewater Rafting Outfitter
Are you looking for an exciting adventure that’s sure to impress everyone in your group? Whether you’re looking for something fun to do with your family, co-workers, or scouting group, white water rafting is exactly the sort of thing you need to shake up your get-together. Check out these rafting tips for a great adventure.
River rafting is exciting, but the best part about it is that you don’t have to b e an expert, or shell out a ton of money for your own equipment to enjoy it. There are plenty of outfitters out there who can provide the equipment and experienced guide for you, no matter your experience level with the sport.
But how do you choose one of these outfitters? It’s important to know which companies are credible and which are just looking to make a quick buck because going out on the river unprepared could be detrimental to your health.
Keep reading to learn our best raft tips for choosing your whitewater rafting outfitter.
1. Their Equipment Doesn’t Make You Say “Ew”
The first thing you should do when looking at a rafting outfitter is take a look at their equipment. Some wear is normal, if it’s not the most beautiful thing with the best paint job you’ve ever seen, you’re probably still alright.
However, it should be cleaned, well maintained and organized. If their life vests are fraying or torn up, you want to go somewhere else.
At the end of the day, you want an outfitter that cares about your safety and your comfort, and they start by taking care of the equipment they supply for you.
2. Their Facilities Are Top Notch
Most rafting outfitters also offer lodging. Take a look at where their lodging is and whether or not it fits with your needs. Many places are located in rural areas. Are you looking for a wilderness experience or lodging closer to a town? Be sure to look at their website and ask questions.
Are their facilities clean? Do they seem well loved and taken care of? This part of your trip is just as important as the actual rafting.
You don’t want to come back from a day of rafting to find that your cabin is not what you were expecting. Be sure to look at website photos and brochures.
3. Adventures for Everyone
Whitewater rafting is an interesting sport because it offers a varying degree of difficulty depending on your experience or levels of desired thrill. And when you’re in a big group, you’re probably going to want to find a trip that’s suitable for beginners.
The rafting outfitter needs to be aware of everyone’s age, physical condition, and ability. Then, they should be able to give you an idea of the sort of trips available to your group.
If you’ve got a team with young kids, you’ll want a beginner course. This is a course with small waves, no experience necessary, and no special fitness or swimming requirements.
If you’re an expert, you know by now that some of the trips can be difficult with large drops and a solid chance of getting thrown from the raft.
Make sure your outfitter knows what you can handle and respects that.
4. An Experienced Guide
A whitewater trip would be incomplete without a good guide. The first thing you should consider when looking into a guide is how personable they are. You want them to be able to get along with everyone in the group.
Their primary job is to steer you safely through a fun adventure. But they should be able to do this with calmness and kindness because the trip is going to go so much better if everyone feels comfortable. The guide should also have a wonderful teachers touch by teaching you the whitewater skills you need for a safe trip.
However, their level of experience is important as well. The last thing you want is to feel like you’ve gotten on a raft with an untrained guide, no matter how nice he or she is.
You want a guide who knows the river well and has training is safety and first aid.
5. Clean Bill of Safety
The next thing you need to consider is how safe the rafting outfitter is. No matter how easy the route is, river rafting can be a dangerous adventure.
You want to do as much research as you can into the rafting outfitter. Ask the outfitter what their safety record looks like, but then do your own look about the internet. If you see some blemishes on their record that they didn’t disclose to you. Look at photos on their website and in their brochure. Do the photos show rafters having fun with clean well maintained equipment. Do they display photos of flipping rafts, guests being thrown from the boat and guides adding risk to the trip. This may not be the outfitter you are looking for.
6. The Price is Right
At the end of the day, you’re placing your safety in the hands of the rafting outfitter. You don’t want to spring for the cheapest company you can find.
There’s a lot that goes into ensuring that you and your group are safe. They need to stay up to date on the latest safety measures, equipment, and training. All of these things cost money, and in turn, tend to drive the prices for their services a little higher.
Think about the kind of company you want to go with here and spring for the one that seems like it’s going to keep you the safest while giving you a good time, not the cheapest one out there.
7. Do People Come Back?
Lastly, you want to take a look at their ratings. Do their customers come back? Rafting is the adventure of a lifetime and when people get a taste, they want to keep coming back year after year.
If the rafting outfitter doesn’t seem to have a lot of return business, start to think about and ask why. The best advice we can give you is to look online and see what their customers are saying about them. If a lot of people are loving the time they spend there, you’re probably with one of the good ones.
Follow These Raft Tips to Find the Best Outfitter Out There
We hope these raft tips will help get you and your group out on the water. Rafting is an incredible hobby for people with an adventurous soul. You’ll have a great time and you’ll meet like-minded people who will become friends for a lifetime.
Just make sure you’re going with the right outfitter. They make or break the experience, and it only takes a little bit of time to ensure that you’re finding the right one for you.
Check out white water rafting Tennessee today!