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would you take your kids whitewater rafting? UPDATE #76 - Page 2

post #21 of 80
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teensy View Post
Does your 7 year old follow instructions well? Is he inclined to stay calm in an emergency?
Yes he follows instructions well but no, he would not stay very calm if he fell out (I probably wouldn't either!)
post #22 of 80
People die falling down stairs and walking down the street too. Doesn't mean we don't let'm do it. A rafting drip advertised as 'class 2 & 3' tells me its almost certainly 80% class 2 and just a tiny bit of class 3 thrown in, probably at the end. I'd do it in a heartbeat, as would dh. Honestly, we can't wait for our boys to get old enough to go rafting & rock climbing & backpacking, etc. Can. Not. Wait.
post #23 of 80
Thread Starter 
Well, some of you say no, and some of you say yes.

You sound like my brain.


I do appreciate all of the opinions, though!
post #24 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by A&A View Post
Well, some of you say no, and some of you say yes.

You sound like my brain.


I do appreciate all of the opinions, though!
If you do decide to go, please, please wear life jackets and helmets. All of you. Yes, people die falling down stairs, but why not use safety equipment if it is provided? Have fun and stay safe!
post #25 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by A&A View Post
I did just call.

Good idea! He said it would be safe for my 7 yo., and they could provide helmets for me if I wanted. But their website pictures don't show helmets.
I'd believe him. Have fun!
post #26 of 80
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pumpkin_Pie View Post
If you do decide to go, please, please wear life jackets and helmets. All of you. Yes, people die falling down stairs, but why not use safety equipment if it is provided? Have fun and stay safe!

This makes sense. Thanks!
post #27 of 80
I would if that were something my kids would enjoy!

I used to go white water rafting before I had kids and I LOVED it. When you go with a tour, you have a guide who goes through those rapids every day (or at least several times a week). The guide is steering and knows the best course. It isn't the same as being in light weight boat on your own.

However, I have a child with autism and vacation items like this aren't possible for our family. I hope you go and have fun!!!!
post #28 of 80
There was a Mothering article about a year ago featuring a mother who took her boys rafting at the end of their summer break... it was a great article...do you think it's on the website here somewhere?
post #29 of 80
I've been rafting several times & have brought my girl guides rafting on 3 different occassions. In my experience the companies are VERY safety minded & wouldn't hesitate to bring my child. Many companies have different sets of rapids/rules they use for children under 90lbs. We had a girl once who wasn't 90lbs yet & she couldn't participate with the other girls.

I have never seen a company who doesn't provide lifejackets & helmets & don't think I'd feel comfortable using one who did. Even when I went in Costa Rica they used the same standards as I'm used to in Canada.

Is it an activity with some risk - yes. But it's also a fabulous experience & the risks are manageable.
post #30 of 80
I forgot to add that every time I've gone the river guides have been VERY good about adjusting the trip to suit the people in their boat. So the time I had a really brave, rambuctious group of girls the guide had has trying some more challenging stuff & taking rougher lines. When I had a quieter, more cautious group the guide kept to the easiest lines & when we went through the more challenging areas he had the girls duck down in the boat to really minimize the chance of anyone falling in.
post #31 of 80
What time of year? How much water will there be? That would probably make the decision for me. If the rivers are running really swift and high, I'd be worried about anyone going.
post #32 of 80
we totally would.
especially as your child is over the age & weight minimum.
we live on a river, cannot wait to have kayak adventures, etc.
but many of my friends have done the rafting thing, the guides know what to watch for, etc. and most have very high safety standards. i'd imagine it's pretty low risk. i say go for it!
post #33 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by A&A View Post
Would you take your kids whitewater rafting (using a rafting company)?

Assume you have kids my kids' ages -- 7 and 13.


Thanks for the opinions.

(PS. Life jackets would be worn, of course)
Absolutely-we owned a WW rafting company and took kids all the time on class 3.

I know that a PP said that she was injured on a class II, which is totally a possibility, but she also said she was in a WW kayak, which is more dangerous IME, I love rafts, but I hate kayaking. I'm a trained river guide and a kayak always has felt uncomfortable and scary(and this is coming from a woman who has done class 5).

As with anything there is risk involved, but for myself I am a HUGE rafting fan and most companies are great with children and families, I know ours was. Gosh watching my DH with many of the children we took is probably why we finally had kids ourselves, seeing him with those kids made me realize what an awesome daddy he could be.
post #34 of 80
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Norasmomma View Post
Gosh watching my DH with many of the children we took is probably why we finally had kids ourselves, seeing him with those kids made me realize what an awesome daddy he could be.
That's really cute.

Dh SO wants to take them and I realize I have to let him make parenting decisions, too.
post #35 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by A&A View Post
He's still learning to swim,
Quote:
Originally Posted by A&A View Post
they could provide helmets for me if I wanted. But their website pictures don't show helmets.
These two items would be my sticking points.

I would say let you DH take the 13 yo who can swim, while you and your 7 yo do something else special. Also I would find a company that required everyone to wear a helmet including the guide who would have a hard time keeping everyone safe if s/he got knocked unconscious.
post #36 of 80
13 absolutely, 7 - depends on the kid. My older son at 7, yes. My younger son is just turning 6, but I don't see him as the kind of kid to handle that at 7.

I went rafting once, on a beginner course, and absolutely loved it. However, even then I got thrown out of the raft one time, and there were some other intense moments that required keeping my cool and following quick directions.
post #37 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by A&A View Post
near Yellowstone, class II and III rapids.


I was fine with it until I read on the website where they say, "You probably won't fall out of the raft."
They don't say you won't because nothing is 100% full proof and they do not want the liability of saying you won't then you do.

Plus remember you can't fix stupid - like people trying to stand up.

I would take them and vest for all. Ask about helmets.
post #38 of 80
I would go, with the caveats that many have already mentioned. I would also inquire if the guide will be wearing a helmet. Wouldn't want the guide to be knocked out leaving a boatful of inexperienced rafters to their own devices. I would hesitate to go with a company that doesn't require helmets for everyone. Aren't rivers, and river beds, like all rock with some water running over them?

In short, I'd go but only with the right company.
post #39 of 80
Helmets (and obviously life vests) are a must for all people in the group.

I'd have reservations about taking a non-swimmer, mostly because of the scariness of how out of control and scary it could be if they did go overboard. Water is crazy powerful, and cold, and it's hard to breathe with the splashing and the rocks and the motion - I think it could be very frightening.

As for "probably won't fall out of the raft part" I have 2 thoughts:

1) A little one is more likely to go over because the forces can throw them farther and they aren't as strong to hold themselves in the boat.

2) Be *very* particular about your guide (and I don't know how to assure this in advance). I've been on a few rafting trips and on the last one the guide was definitely less experienced and less able to direct or control the raft. Sure enough, a raft full of 8 or so adults totally flipped in what couldn't have been more than class 3 water. It is scary and disorienting and totally different than just cruising down a stream in a life vest.
post #40 of 80
13 yes, 7 no. And I don't consider myself remotely cautious or over-protective. I did class III & IV at 13 (on the "deliverance" river, btw).
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