Frequently Asked Questions

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Am I going to fall out of the raft?

If you pay attention during the Safety Talk which we provide before getting on the water, and follow your guide’s instructions, probably not. Taking into consideration all three of our river trips, about 1 in 2000 people unintentionally end up in the water. However, if you’d like to intentionally end up in the water, we do have swim spots available on our Athabasca River trips.

Disclaimer: We can’t promise anything. Even if you are following all instructions, there is still a chance that you may end up going for a swim. Following instructions, however, does significantly reduce the chances of that happening.

Can I bring my camera/phone?

GoPros and other waterproof action cameras are absolutely welcome* (just make sure you have a secure strap/mount). Other waterproof cameras/phones are also welcome* as long as they have a secure strap. If your camera/phone is not waterproof, or if it does not have a secure strap, it is not recommended to bring on the raft. Whatever you bring will get wet, and you will need to be able to free your hands in order to paddle.

*Bring personal items at your own risk

Can I wear a hat?

Yes*. Splashes and gusts of wind will do their best to knock your hat into the water, but as long as it fits tightly, it should stay on your head. Make sure that if you do wear a hat, tighten any straps as much as you comfortably can. Also keep in mind that if you are on the Sunwapta River, you will be wearing a helmet.

*Bring personal items at your own risk

Can I wear my glasses/contacts?

Contacts are generally safe to wear*, but you will want to close your eyes if you anticipate a splash coming, as there is a chance of them getting flushed out with your eyes opens.

As for glasses, if they can pass The Shake Test, you are welcome to wear them on the water*. To perform The Shake Test, put your glasses on, look straight down at the ground, and shake your head vigorously. If your glasses stay securely on, they’ve passed, and are probably safe to wear on the water. If they do not pass, it is not recommended to wear them on the water.

To minimize the chances of your glasses being donated to the river, make sure that you look straight ahead going through rapids. Looking straight ahead means that any splashes will be more likely to push your glasses further onto your face than washing them off. If you turn your head, there is a greater chance that the splash will get under the lenses and wash the glasses off your face.

*Bring personal items at your own risk

Do I need to sign a waiver?

Yes. All participants are required to sign a waiver before getting on the water. We will have digital waivers available upon your arrival at the meeting location. If you would like to preview the waiver, or would prefer to bring a signed paper copy, you may download the waiver.

Do you provide any special clothing?

We will provide a neoprene wetsuit, a pair of neoprene boots, and a lifejacket. If the weather calls for it, we may also provide splash jackets, neoprene jackets, fleeces, toques (aka beanies or warm hats), or gloves.

Do you take photos on the trip?"

Yes. We take photos on all of our rafting trips, some right before getting on the water, and some going through some white water rapids. These photos are available for purchase after the trip on a USB stick for $40CAD. They may also be purchased at our office, or in our off-season you can contact us. The USB stick will contain all of the trip’s photos, and there will be a slideshow during the bus ride back to down so that you can take a look at the photos first.

How many people are in a raft?

On our Class II trips, the Athabasca Mile 5 and the Athabasca Falls, we run two sizes of raft. One can fit up to 6-7 paddlers comfortably, and the other can fit up to 8-9 paddlers comfortably.

Note: "Paddlers" do not include small children who will not be paddling, or our guides. Small children may sit in the middle or front of the raft, slightly increasing capacity. Additionally, total weight and balance are factors. Because of this variability, we do not guarantee raft sizes as it is up to the discretion of our guides to determine what is a safe raft size.

As for our Sunwapta River trip, we only run one size of raft with oar frames. Because of this there is a strict maximum of 6 paddlers on the Sunwapta. This means groups of 7 or more will not be in the same raft. Another consideration on the Sunwapta River is the water level. In lower/higher water levels we may lower the maximum paddlers to 4 for safety reasons.

In which time zone is Jasper located?

In summer, Jasper is on Mountain Daylight Time (MDT, UTC -6).

Beware! If you are coming to Jasper from British Columbia, you will be crossing a time zone, going from Pacific Daylight Time (PDT, UTC -7) to Mountain Daylight Time (MDT, UTC -6). This means that you will lose an hour as you cross the provincial border (only 25km west of Jasper) from British Columbia to Alberta. Please take this into consideration when planning your trip.

Is there a minimum/maximum age?

Maximum age? No. Minimum age? Yes.

For the Athabasca Mile 5, the minimum age is 5 years old. For the Athabasca Falls, the minimum age is 6 years old. From many years of experience, we have found that for children younger than 5 years old, the chances of them having an enjoyable experience on Class II water are too low for us to offer it as an option. This is for their enjoyment, and the enjoyment of other guests that may be on your raft. The child certainly doesn’t want to be scared for an hour, and other guests certainly don’t want to hear them crying and/or screaming for an hour.

For the Sunwapta River, there is a minimum age of 12 years old. Additionally, all rafters on the Sunwapta River should be physically fit and ready to paddle.

Is there a minimum/maximum weight?

As long as everyone is above the minimum ages, there is no minimum or maximum weight. However, we are required to have all participants wear a neoprene wetsuit. Our sizes go from Kids XS to 4XL. Additionally, these are physical activities; most participants will be required to paddle, and on the Athabasca Falls trip, a 5 minute walk down a trail is necessary to get to the water.

Should I wear sunscreen?

Yes! Depending on the time of day, there is generally little shade on our rafting trips, and because of the reflections from the water, you will be exposed to even more UV rays. Because of this, sunscreen is recommended even on overcast days.

What is your cancellation policy?

We have a 48 hour cancellation policy. Cancellations are accepted up to 48 hours prior to your trip departure time with a 100% refund. Within 48 hours, your trip is 100% non-refundable.

Please note that bookings made through third-party companies may have different cancellation policies associated with them.

What should I wear?

Anything you don’t mind getting wet! Swimwear is the best choice, but shorts and t-shirt (or something similar) will do. Avoid cotton if possible as it will keep you colder than synthetic or wool fabrics.

What sort of training do your guides have?

All guides have at minimum a current Standard First Aid & CPR certification (with many of our guides possessing higher or additional levels of First Aid certifications such as Wilderness First Aid). Guides on the Sunwapta River are also have at minimum Level 1 Swiftwater Rescue Training (with many guides possessing higher levels of Swiftwater Rescue Training).

Additionally, at the beginning of their employment with us, guides must complete roughly two weeks of training with the company. Before being able to guide trips solo (without a Certified Guide in the raft with them), for each river section that we run, guides must then pass a written and practical exam. Upon passing, guides will then become certified through the Jasper National Park Professional River Outfitters’ Association, allowing them to commercially guide the sections of river on which they have passed their exams.

Finally, our guides must also complete an Interpretive Knowledge course through the Interpretive Guides' Association. During this, our guides learn about local and First Nations' history and culture, as well as local flora, fauna, and geology. And throughout the season, all staff participate in interpretive and safety updates and refreshers.

Where can I put my valuables?

We do not have any lockers available so if you have any valuables that do not need to be brought with (eg. passport, jewelry, etc.), it is recommended that you leave them somewhere safe in your hotel or vehicle.

If you have any valuables that do need to be brought with you (eg. car keys, wallet, etc.), it is recommended to bring a small bag/backpack which has a zippered with you. Any valuables and dry clothes can be put inside the bag/backpack which can then be left on the bus while you are on the water*. The zippered pocket will prevent your items from falling out while the bus drives to the take-out.

*Bring personal items at your own risk