It just keeps getting better.
D-Mack, leader of the 21 person Adventure Trek crew this year, expressed this sentiment to the Wet Planet instructors after the group’s 3-day whitewater kayak instruction. He also noted that after working with this organization for 3 years, we have dialed in our relationship.
As an instruction team, we were pretty proud to hear this. We felt the weekend was a complete success, instilling confidence in the students and appreciation for the outdoors. It just felt that much better to hear it from them.
Adventure Treks is an organization that offers outdoor and wilderness education to youth in a variety of incredible locations. For their Northwest trips; including stops in Washington, Oregon and Montana; they have chosen to take on the challenge of whitewater kayaking and rafting through Wet Planet’s Kayak Instruction Program and White Salmon River trips.
They must have heard that we have the best rivers in the Pacific Northwest to learn whitewater skills.
Having a group so large can often be a challenge for kayak instruction. Keeping ratios low with six of Wet Planet’s best kayak instructors allowed us to break apart the group for more personal instruction time for everyone.
Learning to kayak often comes easier when you are able to just paddle and not think too much. For much of Day one, the Adventure Trekkers participated in games that challenge their edging, maneuvering and stability without them even knowing.
They found themselves paddling in straight lines to get to the polo ball first.
Their awareness of edges came as they ran across each other’s kayaks in bow races.
They gained confidence while crossing the finish line with their partner in Chariots of Fire.
The next two days on the Klickitat River barely even felt like work. The group’s energy made everyone excited to be there, fostering a better learning environment. We sang, we joked and we had a blast sharing such an incredible whitewater kayaking experience.
The final rapid, Ishy Pishy, was a the ultimate way to end three days of whitewater fun. Students looked back upstream, amazed at what they had just accomplished. We, the instructors, couldn’t have been more proud of the group’s progression over the 3-day course in the Columbia River Gorge.
Another group of Adventure Trekkers took on bigger rapids on our White Salmon Rafting trip. With an experienced Wet Planet guide in each raft, the students not only had a fun day on the river, they also learned how to read water and maneuver through rapids.
Having groups like these to share our passion for river travel makes our day exciting. Wet Planet is grateful that our trips meet the high standards of other incredible outdoor education programs.
-Susan Hollingsworth, Wet Planet Lead Kayak Instructor