Posted on July 24, 2011 by admin
It is an exciting prospect, planning your Shearwater whitewater rafting trip down the Zambezi, Victoria Falls. Here are a few tips to help make your first rafting adventure a success.
1. Choose a guide service with a proven safety record and satisfied customers. As a first time rafter, you will be relying on your outfitter and your guide to provide you with a safe and fun experience. Be sure to research rafting companies for the river you plan to run before signing up. Look for a proven track record, guides who return to the company year after year and satisfied previous customers. At Shearwater our white water rafting record is second to none.
2. Pick a river that is appropriate for your white water rafting skill level. As a first time rafter, be conservative so as to not get in over your head. The main skill level to consider is your swimming ability. Secondly consider your age and the ages of other people in your group. If you are bringing your kids, be sure to pick a kid friendly river. We’ll be happy to advise you on the level of the Zambezi.
3. Be prepared. Planning ahead allows you to show up for your white water rafting trip prepared and includes everything from clothing and equipment to food, sunscreen and water. Find out what clothing, equipment and food will be provided by the rafting outfitter.
Do they provide wet suits? What is the best foot wear for the trip? What are the average temperatures of both the air and the river? Communicating in advance of your trip with the outfitter will allow you to ensure you have the proper clothing and equipment for the trip. Please contact us for more information.5. Keep all of your property in the boat. Remember that should you fall out or the boat get turned over, everything must be attached to you or the raft. As such consider the following:
– Consider your eye wear. If you are planning on wearing sunglasses, make sure they are attached properly with a retention strap. If you are a contact lens wearer, consider the nature of the trip. Should you be rafting in Class 2 rapids or above there is a strong possibility of getting water in your eyes. Either way a protective pair of sunglasses or switch to traditional eye glasses for the journey. The scenery will be incredible and you don’t want to miss out.
– Don’t loose your shoes! While flip flops are great for getting wet and comfortable in the summer, if you were to swim your flip flops would be lost to the river. Instead wear footwear that will stay on when swimming. Sandles such as Chaco’s or Tevas won’t fall of and also provide good support with sturdy soles. Tennis shoes work as well. Should the river or weather be cold, consider neoprene booties. These sock like shoes stay warm when wet.
– Keep your car keys, wallet and other valuables in a zippered pocket. Or better yet, leave them at home or in the take out vehicle.
6. Be a team player. Once you are all suited up and ready to go, remember that you a part of a team. As such, follow the directions of your guides at all times. The more effective your group is at working together, the safer and more fun you’ll have on the river.
Most importantly, have fun! River rafting is a great experience. You should be excited about your Shearwater rafting trip. You’ll have memories to last a lifetime.