Why do we take (and re-take) River Rescue Courses?
It’s simple. Why wouldn’t you spend a couple days on the river while making yourself the best paddling partner you can be?
To me, it’s like the case of a forgotten throw bag: if I’m meeting you to go paddling and you forget your throw bag, guess what? You’re taking mine. Because you don’t carry a throw bag for your own benefit; you carry a throw bag for the safety of your friends and crew. You don’t take rescue courses solely for your own benefit either. If you paddle any level of whitewater more than once a year, you should have river rescue training.
River Rescue Courses are Fun & Challenging
River rescue courses are really fun. You learn new skills, tips, and tricks with each course you take. It’s exhilarating to be in the river all day and running through real scenarios, like unpinning a paddler. The classes are challenging. Course completion makes you feel accomplished because you’re improving your ability to get friends (and strangers) out of sticky situations.
River Rescue Courses, like Wet Planet’s 2-day River Rescue Course (RRC), are affordable. If you think about the course’s “bang-for-your-buck”, the knowledge you gain is invaluable. Also, these courses are very accessible because you can get them done in a weekend.
Whether you’re newer to whitewater or an experienced rafter, cat-boater, kayaker, pack rafter, canoer, riverboarder or SUP paddler, these 2-day river rescue courses are for you. If you’re a whitewater professional, like a guide or instructor, or if you’re an emergency responder or agency personnel, there are also other courses for you.
What Do You Get Into During a 2-Day RRC Course?
What do you get into during a 2-day river rescue course? Courses start out with the basics and work into more technical skills and scenarios. Wet Planet and Sierra Rescue’s internationally-recognized curriculum start with a strong emphasis on identifying and sizing up the rescue scenario.
Like many emergency preparedness courses, students learn that you can’t help the victim if you become a victim yourself. You learn to analyze the situation, think through the risks, both for the rescuer and the victim, and then plan and execute the rescue. The course includes proper use of throw bags, wading and swimming techniques, foot, body and boat entrapments, knots, hitches, anchors and mechanical advantage. Then, you take these skills and use them in scenarios on the water.
With many schools and companies offering courses several times a year at affordable rates, there’s really no reason for a whitewater paddler to have never taken a river rescue course.