Rafting with infants? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 09-17-2013   #1
 
Aurora, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Apr 2006
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Rafting with infants?

What do y'all out there think is a reasonable minimum age for being in a raft on the water? Easy, class 1 plus to 2 minus. 30 lbs seems like a good guideline to me, especially since the CG rating on many "infant" PFDs is 30-50 lbs. Anyway, what do all you parents out there think?

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Old 09-17-2013   #2
 
Florence, Colorado
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Have 4 kids. If there was an adult specifically looking out for the child and at those levels, seems fine.
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Old 09-17-2013   #3
 
Jackson County, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by formerflatlander View Post
Have 4 kids. If there was an adult specifically looking out for the child and at those levels, seems fine.
I agree. Everyone has there own comfort level with their family members. I have two kids, they did there first day trips around 2 1/2 years of age and first multi-day trips a year later (they had to be out of diapers, didn't want to deal with that on the river). There's always an adult up front holding on to them when we encounter rapids, and we walk them around rapids when it doubt. Good luck whatever you decide, have fun, be safe.
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Old 09-18-2013   #4
 
Golden, Colorado
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We started doing multi-day flatwater float trips around 22 months with several families having kids the same age. For us the key was having a River Sombrero. Kids would take naps in the shade as we floated along. I think raft size also makes a difference. We have a 16 footer. The tubes were up to their chest. I don't think I would have brought them on a 14 footer at that age. The biggest danger in my mind was shallow sections where they could fall out and get crushed under the weight of a fully rigged raft.

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Old 09-18-2013   #5
 
Ashlandistan, Oregon
Join Date: May 2011
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Like others have said I based my decisions on the run, my abilities, the abilities of those around us in other boats, weather, a good pfd, and having mama to hold our child in the riffles/rapids. We started our son well under 30 lbs. on day trips and a few overnighters(with good roadside access). He sure spent a lot of time nursing early on and was definately in diapers. He was wearing a pfd similar to this one MTI Infant PFD - Under 30 Pounds at REI.com
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Old 09-18-2013   #6
L Knapp
 
Portland, Oregon
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Our kids were both rafting in utero, and were never allowed to stop, really. I think the answer for each family should take into account your experience level, your partner's experience level, and what kinds of boating friends you have. We definitely put the lid rapids at class ii, and walk around iii's right now, but our kids are 1 and 2.5. They've got a lot of river days this summer and last, and a lot of overnights, seem to really enjoy themselves out there. Our toddler goes bonkers about the raft every time she walks through the garage, tells me all about rafting.
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Old 09-18-2013   #7
DES
 
Durango, Colorado
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My wife and I took our 6 month old daughter down the Upper San Juan last spring. Someone would always be on "high alert" while on the boat, even though she was in her PFD and car seat almost entirely. The chance of flipping the raft on that stretch of river is such a low probability (although not impossible), that it was worth the risk (my mind weighs these things in terms of probability and possibility). It was an amazing experience, seeing her react to things she has never seen before. Playing in the sand and all. Sure, its a lot of work bringing your kids, but it sure beats staying at home.
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Old 09-18-2013   #8
LSB
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Huson, Montana
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Our first kid went on the Moab daily at 6 mos. We strapped his car seat to the front dance floor and set him in unbelted with his PFD on. He slept almost the whole time.
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Old 09-18-2013   #9
 
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Golden, Colorado
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Our first kid went on the Moab daily at 6 mos. We strapped his car seat to the front dance floor and set him in unbelted with his PFD on. He slept almost the whole time.
Yeah, but with your genetics he was probably the size of a five year old already. And shaving.
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Old 09-18-2013   #10
 
dork, confusion
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What does the government say? Just kidding. Have fun
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