July 05, 2012 | Tips from Travellers >
Nelson, River Rafting
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On Thursday my friend Paige and I were invited to go whitewater rafting with Nelson Whitewater Rafting Co. We were met by the bus in Crescent Valley and drove to the Facchina Rapids about halfway to Slocan. On the bus there is a short safety video that explains what to do in case something happens. The company puts safety as a priority. We were given skin tight wetsuits, helmets and life jackets that were pretty funny looking. Paige and I took some pictures.
The Slocan River is beautiful and since the beginning of the rafting ride was pretty slow we were able to look at the scenery. It was pretty warm out and whoever wanted to get wet could play the Rodeo Game. This is when the person stands on the front of the raft holding a rope and everyone else paddles the boat in circles. When our guide told us to switch we would madly paddle in the other direction and the person on the front would fall in the chilly water. It was a lot of fun to watch but I was not daring enough to face the water.
The guides were really good at making us feel safe. They were very personable and funny. John, the owner of the company has 8 years of guiding experience and some funny stories about other trips he has been on. The other guide had just started not too long ago so we helped him practice steering the raft into the eddies on the side. The bus driver met us at the bottom and took some awesome pictures of us.
About halfway through the trip our raft hit a little wave. All of us thought it was huge and a lot of fun. When John told us that that wave was nothing compared to the rest of the ride we didn’t really believe him. But were we ever wrong. At the end of the trip all of us wanted to go back to the top and do it all over again. It was a blast! Since the beginnings of the Facchina Rapids are very mellow it is easy to get used to being on the raft and get some paddling practice.
I would recommend this to anyone who loves the outdoors and is not afraid of getting wet. I was expecting it to be a lot scarier but it was nothing compared to what I thought it would be. I would definitely jump at the opportunity to do this again and with the beautiful scenery in the Kootenays this is something that cannot be missed.