A long time veteran of the commercial whitewater industry, Todd Collins is the original visionary behind the creation of Wet Planet Rafting and Kayaking. An expert kayaker and raft guide, this Wet Planet co-owner’s experience is impressive:
- 20+ years professionally guiding and instructing whitewater
- Commercial river experience throughout the US, Canada, Ecuador, Costa Rica
- Paddling experience in the US, Yukon Territory, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Peru, India, New Zealand, Chile, Zambia, Uganda, and Nepal
- 17,000 + commercial river miles
- Class V raft guide, kayaker, and safety boater
- Class V raft guide trainer
- Trained as a Wilderness EMT by the Wilderness Medical Associates
- Trained as a Wilderness First Responder by the Wilderness Medical Institute
- ACA Certified Whitewater Kayak Instructor
- NOLS Whitewater Canoe Instructor
- Level II Senior NOLS River Instructor and Course Leader
- River Rescue Instructor Trainer for the National Outdoor Leadership School
- Rescue3 Swiftwater Rescue Instructor (WRT , SRT, RRC, and RRC-Pro)
- Leave No Trace Educator
- Educator for the Headwaters Institute
- Guides in both English and Spanish
First hooked on kayaking at a North Carolina Summer camp, Todd began guiding rafts as a way to pursue his passion for whitewater kayaking. Says Todd, “At the time, it was the best way I knew to live by the river and kayak every day.” In an effort to spend as much time on rivers as possible, Todd worked summers as a raft guide while attending Connecticut College. Upon graduating Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa, with a degree in Computer Science, Philosophy, and Spanish Studies, Todd quickly turned his attention to pursuing a full-time career in the whitewater industry.
Since then, Todd has guided rafts and kayak safety boated on rivers in the US from California to West Virginia and from Texas to Alaska, as well as numerous rivers in Canada, Ecuador, and Costa Rica (where he spent two years living and guiding custom kayak trips). When not working on rivers, his paddling adventures also took him to Chile, New Zealand, India, Zambia, Uganda, and Nepal. An expert level kayaker and raft guide, he is equally at home guiding rafts on such legendary Class V rivers as the Upper Gauley and Upper Yough as he is guiding advanced kayakers on jungle rivers in Central America.
An ACA certified whitewater kayak and canoe instructor, Todd is also passionate about sharing his love of whitewater with others. He is a Level II Senior Instructor and Course Leader for the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS). As a river instructor for NOLS, Todd teaches whitewater kayak, raft, and canoe skills, expedition travel skills, leadership and expedition dynamics, and natural history within the format of multi-day wilderness expeditions. With NOLS, Todd has led multi-day trips from the deserts of the Rio Grande River on the Texas-Mexico border to 30-day expeditions above the Arctic Circle in Alaska’s Brooks Range. Todd is also a River Rescue Instructor-Trainer for NOLS as well as a Swiftwater Rescue Instructor for Rescue3 International, and has spent time training instructors in both river rescue techniques and the skills to teach those techniques to others.
With a reputation as a leader in the industry, Todd has used his skills and experience to increase standards and practices throughout the commercial whitewater industry. From mapping miles of trails while working as the Evacuation Coordinator for river companies on West Virginia’s New and Gauley Rivers, to travelling throughout California and Colorado with the Headwaters Institute to train whitewater guides in environmental concerns and natural history knowledge surrounding their particular river communities, to providing technical river rescue support to Klickitat County Search and Rescue, he has consistently played an integral role in the paddling communities where he has lived and worked.
Todd brings his skills, experience, and passion to Wet Planet, as the company continues to set standards and raise the bar in the Pacific Northwest.
When we say Todd does it all, we mean it. He guides on all of our river trips, the White Salmon, Klickitat, Tieton, Farmlands, Hood, and Wind Rivers as well as rivers on our Costa Rica and Peru trips. But Todd doesn’t stop there either; he teaches Kayaking, our Swiftwater Rescue Courses and Guide School. And don’t forget all the hard work he does behind the scenes when he isn’t on the river.
Interested in becoming part of the Wet Planet team? Check out our Employment Opportunities.