Not sure yet if we are offering a guide school next spring. We'll know more after the New Year when we hear back from returning and international guides. I'll keep you posted. You could always send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
We run 13' Hysides with 3 thwarts. On Gore Creek, we like to keep the loads light, four or five guests and one guide. We use the same boats on Dowd, Clear Creek, Pine Creek/Numbers and Gore Canyon. Up to six and a guide on PC/Numbers and Dowd and most of the time three or four and a guide on Gore Canyon.
As far as having guests duck under pipes or swim under on Gore Creek, we never allow that. The guests always walk around the pipes. We have had two guides in the past do some serious knee damage to themselves thinking that they could jump over the second pipe and land back in the raft. One was in 1992 or so and another in 1996. The guy in '96 had just arrived in town and went along on a "fun run" and was apparently not privy to the story from '92. We also had one guide try to go under the left side of the second pipe and strike his shoulder on the pipe. The pipes are serious business and not to be taken lightly. If you take out at Steven's Park, you cannot get a raft back to the creek until after the game fence right above Migration Chute rapid. You really need to have shore support at the pipes to ensure no one goes into/under them. I have heard stories of other rafts on fun runs and with other companies flip/wrap on the first pipe. If the water level is high, do not run past Steven's Park in a raft. I kayaked it a few springs ago and was able to boof over the left side of the first pipe, but walked the second pipe. The wave train made rolling under the pipe a sketchy prospect. The current was way too fast for a raft to safely ferry/eddy out. As far as determining water levels, we used to use the covered bridge at the Ford Ampitheatre as a gauge. But that bridge has since been rebuilt at a greater height above the creek. The round rock behind the West Vail Amoco in the middle of the creek and visible from the road is a good indicator. If it is dry, too low. Wet or washing over, good level. Forming a hole, too high. The Dowd Chute gauge is not an option, too many variables between the Gore Creek and Eagle River watersheds. There is a painted gauge on the bridge by the Savory Inn/Blackbear Inn or whatever it's called now, above Steven's Park. I can't remember what levels are good. Always be sure to do a good scout of the run from shore/bike path or road. Especially after a significant and quick change in water level. Wood likes to lodge in places that aren't visible from the frontage road. I.E. on the island behind the Cascade and around the Library above Lionshead.
Commercial rafting in Gilman is not forseeable in the future due to trespassing concerns and low railroad trestles. It's still a great after work kayak run, though. Especially if Homestake is running.