You're right KSC:shin guards are great protection, but I still think that, ultimately, they don't make a lot of people's list of creeking gear. In high consequence rapids we should all be focusing on staying in the boat and doing the most we can to ensure we stay that way (scouting etc.) Of course we all end up out of our boat at some point and then padding comes in handy. But why not suit up in full crash gear like DH bikers? why don't we all wear face cages? I understand shit show boating, I was there myself for a spell, I still stand by my statement: I will be skeptical of anyone at the put in gearing up in shin guards. I'm not gonna say they have no right to charge but I'm also not gonna volunteer to be responsible for people who routinely expect to swim class IV/V
That said; gnarly swim, good lesson about self rescue!
"Paddle silently, boof loudly"