Sunday, December 16, 2007

Rafting, and Tubing, and Biking! Oh My!

  Choosing the right river trip for you and your companions crucial to ensuring that you all have a great experience on your outing. You need to plan your trip around the most timid person in your group. Trying to convince group members to take part in a trip they don't feel comfortable with can lead to a bad day for everyone.

Things to keep in mind when choosing a trip include:
1. Desire of group members
2. Age, Experience, Ability and Medical Conditions of Participants
3. Difficulty of rapids
4. Weather on the day of your trip (remember it can be different than the day you are planning or booking a trip)
5. River level (can vary depending on rainfall and time of year)

  Activities can include whitewater rafting, tubing, kayaking, canoeing, and biking. Beginner level rafting trips are suitable for most people during normal weather and water levels. Intermediate and advanced level rapids are great for some people especially those desiring a challenge and thrill!.

  Tubing trips can involve beginner to intermediate level rapids and/ or flat water. Tubing can sometimes be more challenging than a guided rafting trip because each participant is in their own tube versus having someone steer for them. Flat water tubing is often suitable even for young guests. We ask that the youngest age is 4 and the minimum weight is 30 pounds. Whitewater tubing is generally for children 10 to 12 years of age.

  Flat water canoe and kayak outings are also suitable for most guests who are comfortable around the water. However, participants need to keep in mind when renting equipment that they will be on their own during the outing and they will need to be able to maneuver their craft on their own. They also may need to rescue themselves or other group members in the event of a capsize.

   Many river users will enjoy an easier level trip and remember that wet suits are a good idea in colder air and water temperatures.

  Biking on the C and O Canal is an ever popular activity. Those who are able to competently ride a bike will find this to be a beautiful and relatively easy ride along the Potomac River. Trips range from a half day to 5 days along this 185 mile long course.

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