Saturday, December 12, 2015

Whitewater Rafting Morning Raft Day Checklist

Whether you have been whitewater rafting before or its your first time whitewater rafting in Maine, Northeast Whitewater answers all your questions about whitewater rafting in the morning raft day checklist speech.  It's a fact, that all guests have the same questions!  It makes it very easy for us to answer each and every question posed by all of our guests the morning of the raft trip day, at our morning rafting speech.  Granted, we go over our raft day checklist information via phone when guests schedule with us, then again in our reservation confirmation, but to hear it first hand the morning of the trip goes like this. 

"Welcome to Northeast Whitewater!  You are whitewater rafting today on the KENNEBEC river.  We need to go over the boring stuff before we can head out on the river and have some fun! 

1) Liability Waiver
First, everyone in your party must complete a liability waiver.  In a nutshell, this waiver says there is inherent risk involved in the activity that you are signing on to participate in today; whether that is eating Rileigh's lunch, riding on the bus or doing a day packed full of whitewater action.  A few things on the form that we need to go over.  What folks never seem to know when they are on vacation - the date!  Today's date is (insert date of trip).  Program name is RAFT and the trip location is spelled on our Northeast Whitewater river map - KENNEBEC.  The rest of the form is your contact information.  If you have anyone in your party that is under the age of 18 a parent or guardian that is over the age of 18 is required to sign for that member of your party.  I will call your party name, you will come meet me at the Northeast Whitewater counter and I'll give you your groups liability waivers and some pens.  Once your done filling out the liability waivers in their entirety, please return those to me and we will continue to talk about what to wear and what to expect for the day.  Sound good?!

...Smith Party of 8!!!

Thanks folks for turning in your liability waivers.  Now, let's talk about what to expect for today!

Your guess is as good as mine as to what the weather is going to do today.   The weatherman is calling for temps in the 60's and a chance of showers this afternoon.  No matter what the weather decides to do though, we dress for the WATER not the weather.  Why do we dress for the WATER, not the weather?  Because you are going to be WET all day!  We want you wet and warm, not wet and cold.

2) What to wear
Some options in regards to what to wear on today's whitewater rafting trip.  No cotton on the river!  Once cotton is wet, it keeps you wet and cold and will suck the heat out of you.  So, you are welcome to wear your cotton t-shirt on the bus ride, but don't wear it on the river.  We have a few options for you to keep you wet and warm - our Northeast Whitewater river shirts are one option.  We have both short and long sleeve options in a variety of colors and what is really super cool about our river shirts is that the river that you will be rafting on today is on the back of the shirt.  Just make sure if you are going to opt for that option, you are the guest that picks the seat in front of the guide, so the guide knows where to go on the river today!  Northeast Whitewater river shirts are multi-purpose because they not only can be worn on the river today, they are a great souvenir.

If you would like to rent wetsuits today, we can offer you a half wetsuit or a full wetsuit.  We have farmer john's for you fellas and farmer jane's for us ladies.  They are very fashionable!  What happens is the water between your skin and the neoprene warms, which helps to keep you warm.  If you would prefer to wear our wetsuit top instead, that is available as well.  The wetsuit top is more of an insurance policy that you have an extra layer for the rafting trip, but if you decide that you are too warm, you can take it off and tie the wetsuit top right into the raft.  If your prone to getting cold we recommend a full wetsuit, which is both the top and the farmer john.  Wetsuits are available for rent when we are through with our morning raft day checklist.

3) River shoes
Next, you must where shoes on your feet - no flip flops, no crocs - something that is securely fastened to your feet.  If not, the river will take your shoes away and you won't be happy at the end of the day without your shoes.  Sandals with a back strap, old tennis sneakers or your own water shoes work great.  We also have river shoes that are for sale in the shop, or river booties available for rental.

4) Holding your sunglasses on your face
You are welcome to wear glasses or sunglasses on the river, but you must get some restraining straps called CHUMS to hold your glasses on your face or the river will ... woosh ... take your glasses away and you won't have your glasses at the end of the day and that will make you sad.  So, either get some CHUMS here in the shop or don't wear your glasses.

5) What to take with you (or not to take with you)?
You are welcome to take a bag on the bus.  What my bag would have in it is some sunscreen, my water bottle, a dry cotton t-shirt for the end of the day, a towel and maybe a little snack for the end of the day.  Do not take anything of value with you on today's river trip.  Gary is our bus driver today and he's not responsible for your personal items.  You don't need your wallets, phones or valuables out on the river.  Lock up your valuables in your car and we have a key box here at the desk, in which we will make sure that your car is safe in our parking lot today.  Just make sure any of those fancy cars out there are fueled up, so Jess can go get some lunch.  (chuckle, chuckle).

6) Cameras
You are welcome to bring a waterproof camera along.  If you don't have your own waterproof camera, we have some disposable cameras here for sale that take great candids of your river experience.  We will be showing pictures at the end of today's whitewater rafting trip on our big screen TV's.  You will get to see all of your big whitewater rafting hits today and we'll also get to see if there were any lily dippers on your raft (learning how to paddle comes later in the guides morning safety speech).  The pictures are available for purchase when you return from today's rafting trip.

7) Food
Is anyone in this group a vegetarian?  We won't make fun of you, I promise.  We serve our famous grilled riverside BBQ today half way through the trip, which includes steak, chicken, a vegetarian option for any vegetarians, river rice, pasta salad, bread and brownies - a nice big feast half way through your day.  If anyone has any food allergies, please be sure to come see us at the counter, so we can accommodate you.

8) Get your gear
If you all have signed your life away and we've answered all of your questions, in regards to today's whitewater rafting trip and you don't need anything in the shop or wetsuit rentals; you are going to turn around, go outside and there are some knuckle heads outside that we call raft guides, that are going to give you three required pieces of equipment today - a lifejacket, helmet and a paddle.  There are changing rooms outside, so go get geared up for the river day and then we'll meet back at the picnic tables for the morning group photo, where you'll meet your guide and then load up on the bus and head to the river."

White water rafting in Maine is not only a fun, exhilarating adventure for most age groups, but also a great way to disconnect from our hectic lifestyles, enjoy family and friends time (and an excessive amount of water).  Our #1 family activity at Moosehead Lake Maine is our Kennebec river whitewater rafting trip.  Northeast Whitewater's Kennebec river trip is great for kids as young as 8 and as old as you can be!  Check out Northeast Whitewater Rafting Trips and our guided overnight rafting trips. And remember, it's okay to be a little nervous, but our experienced Registered Maine Guides are not only exceptional at providing an amazing river experience, they are fun to spend the day with.  Visit Northeast Whitewater this summer to check out our trips first hand!
Northeast Whitewater Rafting - Kennebec River

This is Jessica's morning raft day checklist speech.  All Northeast whitewater raft guides have their own twist and variation to make it a fun, yet informative raft day informational session for our guests.

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