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Old 02-16-2009   #11
Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 154
Originally Posted by HPMG View Post
I have bought a lot of books, but not that one...I'll have to check it out. The Whitewater Voyages school instructor is listed as Bill McGinnis.....could it be the same guy?
Yeah, it's the same guy. If you look on the book, it says Whitewater Voyages on it.

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Old 02-16-2009   #12
Buena Vista/Summit, N/A
Paddling Since: 2002
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 144
Originally Posted by 86304 View Post
here's my 2 cents:

pick up a copy of Whitewater Rafting by William McGinnis. i saw some used ones at 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

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Old 02-19-2009   #13
Idaho Falls, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 16
Check out

They have a good bunch of guides and row some great rivers. I tagged along on a few of their trips on the Tuolumne, but I think their rowing school is in ID... or maybe the Rouge.
When it comes to paddling, there's a difference between what you think it's going to be like, what it's really like, and what you tell your friends it was like.
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Old 02-19-2009   #14
Ashland, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 107
My wife and I went to ARTA whitewater rowing school on the Main Salmon last summer (as newbie rafters) and loved it. It's geared to recreational rafting (i.e., private trips) vs. the guide schools' emphasis on commercial trips. Ours was a small group, great instruction on all aspects of river travel, and lots of time on the oars (strictly oar boats, no paddle rigs). I think the cost was only $775/person for an 8-day instructional trip (which included all meals).

I've talked to people who have done "guide schools" and gotten mixed reviews - some say the slightly higher intensity is good for skill development, others were put off by the testosterone-ridden 20's-something wanna-be-a-guide mindset of students.
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Old 02-19-2009   #15
Groveland, California
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 201
Thanks tahoetransplant for the tip, and daveb1 for the info on the school!

Someone else referred me to ARTA and I called them yesterday, ....sounds like the Idaho Row School is great and is exactly what I am looking for. The only problem is I have to wait until August....

Funny thing is, it turns out that ARTA's headquarters are about 2 miles from my door! They also said they could work out some private instruction early season to get me started....might do that also.

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