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Showing posts from March, 2012

Esoteric White Water Rafting Terms

Leavenworth, Washington Like most activities, occupations and hobbies, white water river rafting has a language all its own.  What looks to the untrained eye like a wave, but a wave that has the propensity to recirculate boats, people and logs, are called "holes".  River guides look for the "tongue" as they approach a rapid because the tongue signifies the deepest and - typically - clearest channel.

But there are more esoteric terms guides bandy about that I'd like to introduce to the interested boating public.  (Let me preface this list by stating that in the event of injury or tragedy some of these terms may be considered insensitive and are not bandied about.)
Lava Falls 1982 - On the 'hateful' left side of the tongue "Yard sale" or "carnage", for instance.  Each of these reference the same sort of incident.  A raft has had a mishap and now the boat, gear, people and, depending on the sort of trip, miscellaneous flotsam a…

River Rafting as Team Building

Leavenworth, Washington Henry Ford was quoted as saying, "Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success."  Managers, work-group supervisors and corporate leaders may want to consider looking outside of the box for tools and ideas that motivate and bring groups together.  Orion River Rafting believes they need look no further than their closest Washington river outfitter.  Our guides become guides beneath the banner of teamwork and know how to provide a quality river trip that will bring out the best in your group and get them working as a team.
River rafting is not all flailing paddles and great big splashes. White water rafting trips, once again, are becoming a popular way for corporate groups to bond and grow together. Co-workers unite in powerful ways on a whitewater trip because - by necessity - they are working together to challenge the forces of nature. There are few things more exhilarating than spending a day, or s…

More Leavenworth River Rafting

Leavenworth's Chamber of Commerce would have you believe we see blue skies over the Bavarian-themed village all year long with nary a break.  After re-locating Orion River Rafting to Leavenworth in 2005 and living here twelve months of the year, I can report that - if you believe the Leavenworth Chamber of Commerce's version of the weather - I have some property in south Florida you might be interested in that I guarantee has no pythons living on it.

Of course, Leavenworth is a good deal warmer and drier than the Cascade's wet side, but, before you head over here on vacation, be sure to check the forecast.  Most of the time, as you are driving over one or the other pass en route to what we affectionately refer to as Der Town, you will break out of the choking grey of the Sound's maritime climate, and glide down into a valley of ponderosa pine forests illuminated by clear blue skies.  Occasionally, the maritime precipitation crawls over the passes and rains …

Building a River Rafting Culture

When I first 'cut my teeth' river rafting, my instructors talked about a collection of 'river gods'.  They were not referring to the bold whitewater enthusiasts who were starting to push the boundaries of river rafting all over the planet while claiming first descents, though many thought of those daring adventurers as 'river gods'.  It was their way of introducing the green river runners in our party to their version of the mythological pantheon of 'river gods' that they claimed were part and parcel of a free-flowing river.

With white water rafting - when in doubt, scout! I will not bother you with the names of these gods, but I will divulge that they were 'tongue-in-cheek' monikers.  Sort of inside jokes, in the Southwestern river community where I was taught to guide.  But they stood for something else altogether - Respect.

Respect for the immense, unknowable, ultimately untameable power of moving water.

Respect like Aretha Frankli…