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Old 12-04-2009   #1
Ryanrugger's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 248
Need advice about Ecuador.

I am in the 1st stages of planning a trip to Ecuador and had a few questions. 1st has anyone been down there lately? Do you recommend staying at a kayak resort or staying at a local hotel and getting daily guided rates? Does anyone know of any hookups for guides? What are the chances of renting a decent boat when I get there? Give me the goods people!

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Old 12-04-2009   #2
kayakArkansas's Avatar
In this bullshit three-ring circus sideshow of freaks, Arkansas
Paddling Since: 1986
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 194
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Small World Adventures

I've never had the pleasure, however I know one of the main dudes around there (Don) and he is the finest boater I have ever known. Everything I have heard about this place puts it at the top of my list for destination kayaking (in the US winter). I'm sure they run great trips and would be worth the cash, but if you decide to go it on your own I think they would at the very least be able to hook you up with beta and a boat. Also their website has a guidebook available that could be of use to you. Good luck! I wish I were planning a trip down south right now instead of working like a slave for my room and board in SE KS for the winter

Hope this helps,

Zach W.

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Old 12-04-2009   #3
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 273
You can find my email on the website. I've lived down here for over a little while and I can offer up some beta and maybe even do some boating. I also have a big Habitat for rent, brand new. You can definitely get it done down here without a guide service.

hey diddle diddle...
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Old 12-04-2009   #4
Aspen, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
I just got back from a week with Small World Adventures. This is my third trip with them and each time I go I come back saying that was the best kayak trip I've ever had. I highly recommend getting on one of their trips. They are great people to boat with and they have it dialed in. Darcy is usually on the buzz and she's who I'd hit up for beta.
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Old 12-05-2009   #5
Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1993
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 79
Ecuador boatin'

I did a trip with SWA and I highly recommend their experience. The first thiing I suggest, if you haven't already, is get a copy of their Ecuador Paddling book which is available from them at

There is a boating community in Tena but putting together your own trip would require more effort than worth it I think for a first time.

Larry, Don and Darcy are great people and they'll take care of you. I did my own trip with them so it was just me with Don and Darcy and we had a fantastic time.

No matter how you do it, enjoy your trip and take lots of smaller bills. At least when I was there I had some trouble getting change for anything over a $10.

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Old 12-06-2009   #6
Bozeman, MT
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 106
Ecuador is the shit! By far my favorite winter boating trip, it's sooo easy to get around and boat a ton on your own, which in my opinion is the only way to go. It is super easy to get around with a boat- compared to Central America where it's a pain because the people are shiesters, and try and take advantage of gringos, or Chile & Argetina where you need a truck because the boating is spread out, ecuador is super simple! Fly to Quito with a copy of Small World Adventures guide book, and $1000 and your set. The small World guide book is key, and their nice folks, they also have about 50 boats to rent, they have all the new and old boats. If your not planning on trying to sneak a boat on the airplane with the ol' "it's surf equipment" tactic you can researve on with them to make sure you get the boat you want. If you can't sneak one on, no worries you can get one of their older ones that isn't being used by there clients. I broke my boat and rented a wavesport Y, and my buddy rented a gus without reserving one. Rodrigo in Baeza also has a few boats. Any how, it's super easy hop busses to the three major boating areas- Baeza, Tena, Banos. From there hostels are cheap $5-$10 a night, and you can hire taxi drivers with quad cab trucks that know put-in and take-out's. Shuttling kayakers is nothing new for them. Also, you can hitch rides in equador by standing on the side of a road, and giving the driver $1 or so depending on the distance your going. Everyone has quad-cab trucks, so just boat down a run and pack a few straps to strap your boats on. Traveling is cheap, super easy, and everyone is friendly, you don't really have to worry to much about getting stuff stolen. The boating is amazing, practicly every creek or river is runnable around the boating towns. Your back will defanetly be sore from all the boofing!
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Old 12-07-2009   #7
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 47
I also highly recommend Small World - Darcy, Don, and Larry are amazing. They're fun, they're excellent boaters, they know the rivers, the people, the country, etc. The rivers and scenery are amazing, and instead of spending tons of time on logistics, we spent tons of time on the rivers. The cost includes everything but airfaire, and it's a damn good deal.
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Old 12-08-2009   #8
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Great info!
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Old 12-10-2009   #9
Jenks, Oklahoma
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,408
another option

Small World and Larry V run great Ecuador trips. And, their lodge is just awesome. Food is first class and I can think of no better way to relax than having a local beer while setting on the front porch waiting for dinner.

Phil and Mary DeReimer also run great Ecuador trips.

Whitewater Kayaking With DeRiemer Adventure Kayaking

Both outfitters were pioneers in opening up Ecuador to boaters.

Ecuador (my opinion) is a boaters paradise down south when most of us are frozen in up here due to winter storms etc. Been down there five times over the years.

Take a few extra days to get acclimated and hang out in Quito. Quite a city and lots to see. Especially neat is a tour of "old town".

I have been on trips with both of them and both are World Class.

Whitewater Kayaking With DeRiemer Adventure Kayaking
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Old 12-10-2009   #10
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 158
Hey Ryan,

Darcy here from Small World Adventures--so, obviously, I think you should join one of our trips Like people said, we've got an awesome riverside lodge, a gourmet cook, massage therapist and over 60 kayaks to choose from. Larry Vermeeren pioneered kayaking in Ecuador in the early 1990's, and SWA is in it's 18th year of operations down here, so we really have the logistics dialed! We've got everything from Class III to Class V trips running in January and February, so hopefully one of them would fit your bill. As everyone said, we work super hard to show you a good time (thanks to everyone for your support on this forum).

I think if you are short on time, a trip with us is the way to go (we'll give you 7 out of 7 days of paddling).

But, if you have more time, and you don't want to go the trip route, we do rent boats and I'd be happy to answer any questions you have.
Just email me at


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