White Water Rafting For Beginners

White Water Rafting for Beginners

White water rafting can be intimidating, especially if your only perspective is from the adventure documentary Congo: The Grand Inga Project. You might be thinking to yourself.  “These people are insane! I don’t want to die in crocodile infested waters, with beaches unsafe for camping, where literally everyone dies!”  Well not to worry. Not all white-water trips are the red bull version of a whitewater adventure. There a few levels of starting your rafting adventures ranging from a scenic float trip on the Green River below Flaming Gorge Dam to a four or five-day multi-day trip in Dinosaur National Monument on the Yampa River or Green River through the canyon Gates of Lodore.

The Scenic Float:

This trip is perfect for the beginners with young kids, people looking for a relaxing day out or someone unsure if white water rafting is for them. A scenic float typically involves a little bit of white water splashing in a beautiful place. They offer class I-II rapids, places for kids to swim in the water, a delicious lunch, and the option to use an inflatable kayak depending on the company you are booking through. It’s a great way to get a sense of what it’s like to float on a river raft trip. In Vernal, Utah Dinosaur River Expeditions is the only locally owned and operated outfitter we have a great day trip on the A-section of the Green River it is the ideal place for a scenic river float. It offers views of the beautiful Uinta mountains, a bit of geological and environmental history from your guides, and the potential to see a few bald eagles, great blue herons, mule deer and maybe a pronghorn antelope. This trip is a great activity if you are visiting the vernal area for a few days and want to spend a day on the water. https://www.dinosaurriverexpeditions.com/expedition/daily-trips-flaming-gorge-river-rafting/

The Mellow Multi Day:

Looking for more than a one day trip but you are still unsure about river trips with bigger rapids. We offer a great multi day option that can be just one night, or three, has class 2 and 3 rapids and will give you a great idea for what river camping is like, or glamping rather. A standard night on the river is going to include a campfire, a gourmet dinner complete with Dutch oven dessert, falling asleep to the sounds of the river, and a pancake or French-toast breakfast. This option is on the Utah section of the Green River from Flaming Gorge Dam to Brown’s Park. It’s a beautiful trip with class II rapids and lots of wildlife. The river tends to be much less populated on these lower sections of the river offering seclusion with your family and a chance to view Utah’s night sparkling sky. https://www.dinosaurriverexpeditions.com/expedition/green-river-flaming-gorge/

The Thrilling Four Day and Five Day:

If you tried the Splashy day trip and a mellow overnight and want to mash the two together, a thrilling four-day or five day trip is right up your ally. In Dinosaur National Monument, the Gates of Lodore on the Green River and the Yampa River are perfect multi day white water rafting adventures. They are classic white water adventures and will offer all the perks of a mellow overnight: great food, seclusion and wildlife with spicier rapids such as Warm Springs on the Yampa River or Hell’s Half Mile on the Green River through the Gates of Lodore. Your guides will know a lot about the area and be able to give you a fairly detailed history of the environment, and geology around you. If you already know you love camping and are a thrill seeker don’t be afraid to jump straight to either of these trips. They are  great trips for a first timer or experienced river rafter a like!

https://www.dinosaurriverexpeditions.com/expedition/green-river-gates-lodore/

The Congo:

After a four day Lodore you are ready for the Congo. Just kidding. This is not a river for beginners in any sense, unless you are beginning the late stages of a professional kayaking career.

Any of these style trips are a great place to start! A few tips: remember a water bottle, sunscreen and a rain jacket (YES A RAIN JACKET). Nothing ruins a trip fast than a sunburn and an angry dehydration headache. Listen to your guides and have fun! The river is a great place to let yourself have a little fun and embrace your inner child. Your amazing guides will make it as safe and fun of an experience as possible.


Unplugging, What to Expect

Unplugging, What to Expect

One of the greatest perks of going on a river rafting trip is the lack of cell phone service and internet connection. Today the average American spends over 10 hours looking at a screen every day and the rise of social media is linked with a rise in mental health disorders among teens. Being unplugged is many guests favorite part of the trip, but it can also be nerve wrecking. Not to worry, you aren’t alone in your fears, and we promise it will all be worth it.

The Anticipation:

Like a college freshman walking into their dorm room for the first time you are filled with questions, nervous, but also excited. What will it be like? It’s the first time my whole family has been unplugged. Maybe I will have service…? Will the internet miss me?

I hate to burst your bubble, but the internet will not miss you. The world of social media will go on to fight another day without you. We recommend you leave your phones in the car (it will make your withdrawals end sooner). Prepare by digging out your old IPod classic and speaker, find a good camera, a deck of cards, and that book you have been wanting to read. If you must bring your phone download a few extra Spotify playlists and delete a few games to make sure there is plenty of room for photos.

But what if something happens while I’m gone!? Not to worry, your guides carry a satellite deivice called an “In-Reach” for emergencies.  This means that if something happens in the real world and you NEED to know about immediately, you will. But please keep in mind this is for emergencies only, not to check the score of the Pat’s game.

The Withdrawals:  

You are on your way. Your family is lounging in the summer sun, half listening to your guide chatter about the history of Dinosaur National Monument and how old the rocks are, gazing at the beautiful canyon before you. You’re finally breathing easy when your oldest child pulls out his phone to take a snapchat. He realizes that there’s a snap unloaded on his phone. Panic sets in. They weren’t lying, there is no service. Your kids ask at every bend, “Is there service here?” staring at a screen missing the most spectacular views you have ever seen. You’re telling your children to relax and just enjoy the movement and secretly you are wishing you could check Twitter. 

The Awakening:

Finally, at camp the first night you’re sitting in mesh chair arranged in a circle on the sandy beaches of the gorgeous Green River next to you. You pretend to read your book, really thinking about the day spent listening to your kids ask all the questions you wanted to…

The chairs around you start to fill and you put down your book to chat. The what do you dos and where are you froms eventually lead to someone asking “Which state has the largest concentration of dairy farms?” Un-googleable, it sparks a lively debate and leads to stories about your childhood summers spent on a dairy farm in Nebraska.

Enjoying the Moment:

All the chairs are full and you watch your children laugh uncontrollably at one another in the firelight. Everything seems to be at peace, a million stars you’ve never seen twinkle above you and silently, you realize that no one has mentioned their phones in hours. You are unplugged. The next three days are full of towering canyon walls, thrilling whitewater, storytelling, and debating which collection of stars is Cassiopeia. You stay up late, loving this time spent with family and new friends, pre-trip worries entirely dissolved.

An Overwhelming Reintroduction:  

You float up to the Split Mountain boat ramp at the end of your trip so glad you have unplugged, but just a little curious about what happened while you were gone. You hold your breath to hug your guides goodbye, tearing up a bit, equal parts sad to go and overwhelmed by the smell. Thrilled with the whole experience, you pile into the van back to the hotel. You pull out your phone and it starts to buzz. Bzzzz, bzzzz, bzzz. My God, it won’t stop! 150 group messages from the ladies in your gym class complaining about how sore they are, 30 emails from J-Crew alerting you to another 20% sale, and New York Times notifications roll in one after another! Completely overwhelmed, you realize you told everyone you wouldn’t have service until the next day and you turn off your phone, to enjoy the last few minutes of your unplugged paradise.


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