Originally Posted by 86304
here's my 2 cents:
pick up a copy of Whitewater Rafting by William McGinnis. i saw some used ones at amazon.com for $1.25.
It was written in the 50's i think but the physics of hydraulics are still the same. It's kind of fun reading about the way they had to build all of their own stuff. no NRS back then. there's some great hand-drawn pictures of running rapids. Just a ton of good info on camping, safety, first aid, food etc.
Getting on the water is the best teacher and having someone show you the ropes is helpful. if you decide to pay to go to a school, having read up a bit will set you up better, i think.
Check around where you live for paddling clubs. It's a good way to meet people in the boating community where you live. they're out there. you're gonna want to have some buds to go boating with.
NRS is frikkin walmart, ther crap falls apart faster than dry wall in water.
whitewater training also has alot to do with who is actually training you. ask the companies how many people out of the classes they are actually planning on hiring. if they say 50% they are doing it for money. If they say 90-100% they are actually doing it cuz they care and wanna run a safe operation, therefore they will have better trainers and you will be more prepared for different rivers and different situations.....and screw NRS