What could be more thrilling than rushing down the river in a raft full of people? The excitement can only be topped by it being you guiding that expedition. If you are someone who loves the adrenaline rush that result from whitewater rafting, and you are have a lot of experience doing it, you may want to consider becoming a whitewater raft guide. It’s actually easier than you may think, making it that much more enticing!
Getting the Job
Like many types of jobs in this field there are no set requirements or degrees that you need to have in order to get hired. All you need is a love of whitewater rafting and what it takes to make it through training. Most whitewater rafting companies offer a training course each year, where they bring in group of people interested in becoming a whitewater raft guide. The intense training course not only trains the people to become guides, but it also weeds out those candidates who would probably not be able to hack it.
If you make it through the whitewater raft training then you are pretty much in. From there you can work to prove yourself by leading rafting expeditions that are safe and provide people with the fun and excitement that that paid for. Many whitewater raft guide positions are seasonal, so you may have to find another position to do in the off season. Also, whitewater raft guides get paid per outing, which is around $30-40 each trip. They may do two or three trips in a day at the most.
Doing the Job
Being a whitewater raft guide is ideal for the person who just loves whitewater rafting and wants to share their abilities with others. Because of the hours there are also teachers who take up the position because it gives them a summer job to do while they are off from their other full time position. Some college students may also find that it is a good way to spend the summer or to have a fun job while working around their school schedule.
There are also people who work full time jobs who take a whitewater raft guide position on the weekend just for the fun of it. They have done their 9-5 day job all week, and then when the weekend comes they head to the river for a release and fun. In other words, there is no one type of person or situation that fits a whitewater raft guide position. If you love whitewater rafting, go for it and give it a try.
What the Job Entails
The skills that are necessary to be a whitewater raft guide include experience whitewater rafting, river experience, and knowing how to read the river. There are training courses that are offered that will help you learn to read whitewater, learn the best strokes and how to maneuver the raft, river signals, and how to communicate with your crew. It is also a good idea to have some basic first aid and CPR training. Strength training is another good thing to work on, as it takes a lot of strength to maneuver the raft and help load and unload them.
Whitewater raft guides may not make that much money, but they do get a lot of out of the position. They get the thrill of being on the water, sharing their knowledge, and helping others have an awesome time. They get to meet new people and create lasting memorable experiences for everyone they guide. And the thrill they get each time they go out is priceless.