Whitewater Rafting

Ohiopyle Whitewater Rafting; first whitewater trip in North America in 2014

Ohiopyle rafting buzz was in the air yesterday.. as the first rafting trip of the year hit the Youghiogheny River.

Ohiopyle group rafting wilderness voyageurs

Wilderness Voyageurs hosted a college group from Illinois on spring break who were working on a Habitat for Humanity project.  Kudos to them for their community involvement and volunteerism.   What a great way to kick off our celebration of being the oldest whitewater rafting outfitter east of the Mississippi; Launching the first whitewater rafting trip in the US of 2014!!  That has us really fired up.

Rafting trip briefing Wilderness Voyageurs

Every rafting trip starts off with a safety and orientation talk.  Today we were focused on how to keep every one warm.  If you fall in, you need to be proactive about getting back to the raft and out of the water ASAP.  Here the trip leader Brian T. explains the proper way to sit in a raft and how to efficiently paddle together as a team.

The Yough River was running 6.9 on the Ohiopyle Gauge and the water was a bit on the chilly side, about 40 degrees.   This water level dictates that we use a bit larger of a raft than during average summer flows.  Today was 8 man rafts, with a guide at the helm. 

Ohiopyle spring rafting wilderness voyageurs

The lucky Ohiopyle raft guides that got to kick off this memorable year were Zane R., Adam aka Sherpa, Adam aka Grizz, and Brian T. Check out their “Blue Angel Formation” as they approach Cucumber Rapid.  These guys are true professionals, you would never know this is the inaugural trip of the year.  Although it is the first raft trip of the year, everyone has been out kayaking creeks and playing on the loop all winter. As a side note, if this sounds awesome and this lifestyle is screaming your name, think about joining our whitewater guide training program this spring.

Whitewater rafting ohiopyle cucumber splash

Well the reason why you come rafting.. to get wet. Hope everyone had their wetsuits and paddling jackets zipped up.  To check out more pictures from this trip, head on over to our whitewater rafting photo gallery on Google +.

Ohiopyle rafting 2014 trip 1

These guys and gals have got game..   Look at these big cheesers, note the snow on the banks of the Yough.   Well they did score  the first trip of the year,, but you can still get in on the early fun.  Our official Rafting Season Kick-off event is April 5th & 6th.  Come experience the Yough River and the Cheat River, get fed good food at the Falls City Pub, and dance to Rising Regina.  An Ohiopyle party to not be missed.  Come on out and have some fun with us.

Downstream is where the fun is!

We have mentioned Ohiopyle a lot,, not sure where or what that is??  Ohiopyle is a town and the largest state park in Pennsylvania.  Read about Ohiopyle.  Check out all the other outdoor fun that Wilderness Voyageurs has to offer: Ohiopyle outdoor adventures.

Wilderness Voyageurs, 103 Garrett Street, Ohiopyle, PA 15470  800-272-4141

#ohiopylerafting

#whitewaterrafting

Categories: Ohiopyle, Ohiopyle rafting, Whitewater Rafting | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Ohiopyle Whitewater River Guide Training

Whitewater river guide!?!  In Ohiopyle!?! The wind is blowing and the patches of black ice are waiting to ambush the unwary and your mind is drifting towards the coming spring.  If you are imagining sore muscles, swimming in cold rivers, feeling equal parts fear and excitement, it may be you are a candidate for whitewater river guide training with Wilderness Voyageurs.  Make sure you check out the guide letter on the employment page link.

2014 is going to be a special year here at Wilderness Voyageurs.  We will be celebrating our 50th year in operation and I invite you to throw your helmet in the ring for a chance to  join the pantheon of river guides who have enjoyed a well earned beverage, sitting in the sun in Ohiopyle, remembering a day on the water, and looking forward to another one tomorrow.

Ohiopyle Raft Guide Training

Getting it Done on the Lower Yough

Being a river guide is not a job for the faint of heart, nor is the training.  It is more than a sexy life jacket tan.  At its core, river guiding is about taking a complete novice from point A to point B, making sure they aren’t killed in the process, while keeping a smile plastered on their faces.  It is responsibility not to be taken lightly.   More importantly, you are a gatekeeper to a wonderful world, a world of wild things!  Everyday you are given a chance to take someone through that gateway, out of their comfort zone and introduce them to a world where the wild things are.  That is a privilege, one that Wilderness Voyageurs does not take lightly, and it is reflected in our river guide training.

After you send in your exhaustive paperwork; cover letter, resume, application, and photocopies of your driver’s license and first aid and cpr cards, we will go through and call your former/current employers and references.  Then we go all “big brother” and look you up on Google and Facebook, so please be responsible and make sure your social media is cleaned up.  After all that is said and done we will send out the invitations to join us for river guide training.  If you accept, get ready for a time you will remember for the rest of your life.

The training will be led by head instructors, Rich Rostauscher

Ohiopyle whitewater rafting wilderness voyageurs

Get used to that look on his face!

and Josh Lawrey.                

Ohiopyle white water rafting near pittsburgh

“Good Cop”? maybe… maybe not.

They will take you under their wings, and put you through the paces, breaking you down and then rebuilding you into a whitewater machine.  Helping you to create the skills that will pay the bills.  Enabling you to safely escort the guests down the river, showing them a great time, and helping them escape for a few hours and reconnect to where the wild things are.

Josh and Rich will take you from the basics of how to hold a paddle (remember, it is not an oar.  You find those on street corners late at night) to how to paddle a raft all by yourself (the J-Stroke), to how to set up a Z-Drag to unpin a stuck raft, to how to swim through a strainer (They’ll even tell you what a strainer is).  Day one will begin with a little meet and greet and be followed up by a nice introduction trip to the river; a little paddling, a little splashing.  Day two and until the end of training, this formula will take over; You will meet in the morning for a little classroom time, then you will get wet, you will be uncomfortable, you will be tired, you may even get to “raft dance,” and you will either be chomping at the bit for more, or you will be ready to hang up your life jacket.  If you feel like hanging up your life jacket, give it a couple days.  Being a river guide is a doorway to whole new world.

Besides becoming a complete whitewater badass, another plus of training with Wilderness Voyageurs is that you will travel!!  This area of the Appalachians is teeming with quality whitewater, and you will be exposed to as much as we can expose you too.  From the Casselman and Indian Creek here in our back yard, to the Stoney Creek to the north, and the Mighty Cheat and the Big Sandy to the south,not to mention even more rivers, you will be able to tick off a number of classics before you are even a river guide!

Training starts with on our kick off weekend of April fifth and sixth, then runs through the weekend of May 17th and 18th.  There will be a break for Easter.  To get a better idea of what to expect and what you need to bring, just click here: I wanna work in Ohiopyle!!  And remember, you don’t have to be a river guide to work with us.  We are always hiring good people to work in our Ohiopyle outfitter store, at our reservations desks, in Falls City Pub and Restaurant, or driving a bus.  Looking forward to seeing some new smiling faces on the water with spring!

#whitewaterriverguide

#ohiopyle

Benjamin Scoville  is the operations manager here in Ohiopyle. He is the guy that has the power of the pencil as we say.. He does all of the scheduling and overseeing rafts & trucks.

Wilderness Voyageurs, Inc.
PO Box 97 
Ohiopyle, PA 15470
 
Categories: Kayaking on the Youghiogheny River, Ohiopyle, Ohiopyle rafting, Whitewater Rafting, Wilderness Voyageurs | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Savage River Whitewater Release: The Bobsled Run of Rafting on June 3rd!

Savage River Rafting

The world class “bobsled run” of whitewater rafting, The Savage River only has 3 releases a year. Catch it Sunday June 3rd on it’s first run of 2012.

Raft like a world champion.  Yep, that’s right on for the Savage. We have a preferred description that’s even better though, and deliciously accurate and imaginative! The world class Savage River run is  “The Bobsled Run of Whitewater Rafting”!!!

What does that mean?  That means raft fast and furious down a wild mountain river that doesn’t have calm long pools to catch your breath. The Savage River is also the river  where World Kayak and Canoe Slalom Champions have been crowned.  It was the site of the 1989 Whitewater World Kayak/Canoe Championships.

The Savage River in Garrett County, Maryland stars in its first whitewater rafting release of the 2012 season this Sunday, June 3rd.  This is one of only 3 guaranteed whitewater releases for all of 2012.  Tucked in the southern corner of Garrett County, this little sister of the Upper Yough is little known and hard to stumble upon (except if you have expert contacts like our Wilderness Voyageurs staff to guide you down it.)

The Savage is 5 miles of continuous whitewater.  The largest eddy we will encounter all day is large enough for only 2 rafts at a time. Translation, it’s wicked fun and fast!

  • Raft the Savage on Sunday and raft the Upper Yough on Monday and save $35 a person. :)
  • 2012 Release Dates:  Sunday June 3rd, Sunday July 1st, and Saturday September 29th.

Where is the Savage River?        View Savage River Whitewater here on a Google map

Learn more about rafting the Savage River.

Contact the Wilderness Voyageurs office at 800-272-4141 if you have questions or would like to join us for a great day on the river.

Categories: Upper Yough, Whitewater Rafting | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

Savage River Whitewater Release: The Bobsled Run of Rafting on June 3rd!

Savage River Rafting

The world class “bobsled run” of whitewater rafting, The Savage River only has 3 releases a year. Catch it Sunday June 3rd on it’s first run of 2012.

Raft like a world champion.  Yep, that’s right on for the Savage. We have a preferred description that’s even better though, and deliciously accurate and imaginative! The world class Savage River run is  “The Bobsled Run of Whitewater Rafting”!!!

What does that mean?  That means raft fast and furious down a wild mountain river that doesn’t have calm long pools to catch your breath. The Savage River is also the river  where World Kayak and Canoe Slalom Champions have been crowned.  It was the site of the 1989 Whitewater World Kayak/Canoe Championships.

The Savage River in Garrett County, Maryland stars in its first whitewater rafting release of the 2012 season this Sunday, June 3rd.  This is one of only 3 guaranteed whitewater releases for all of 2012.  Tucked in the southern corner of Garrett County, this little sister of the Upper Yough is little known and hard to stumble upon (except if you have expert contacts like our Wilderness Voyageurs staff to guide you down it.)

The Savage is 5 miles of continuous whitewater.  The largest eddy we will encounter all day is large enough for only 2 rafts at a time. Translation, it’s wicked fun and fast!

  • Raft the Savage on Sunday and raft the Upper Yough on Monday and save $35 a person. :)
  • 2012 Release Dates:  Sunday June 3rd, Sunday July 1st, and Saturday September 29th.

Where is the Savage River?        View Savage River Whitewater here on a Google map

Learn more about rafting the Savage River.

Contact the Wilderness Voyageurs office at 800-272-4141 if you have questions or would like to join us for a great day on the river.

Categories: Upper Yough, Whitewater Rafting | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Upper Yough Rafting Opens Friday April 20th

Horizon lines, Dream Stream, Sang Run, and Anticipation: what do these things have in common? Yep – Upper Yough season is upon us!

We’re getting excited…. our favorite Class 5 river is 3 days away from launch time! Deep Creek Lake will open up her gates on Friday April 2oth for the inaugural water release of the 2012 Upper Yough Whitewater season.  We call this section of the Youghiogheny River, the “Dream Stream“. You’ll can find out why – during your trip.

A day on the Upper Yough goes like this: You meet your expert Upper Yough guides at our Wilderness Voyageurs rafting center in Friendsville, Maryland. You start your rafting adventure at a tiny bridge in the middle of the Appalachian woods, called “Sang Run”.  The river is kind and gentle at this point, giving you two miles of gradually increasing swiftness and slowly growing canyon walls.  You get to loosen up your paddling muscles and learn how to work together with your raft team. Oh yeah, and the anticipation

This next bend in the river looks a lot like the last few; towering hemlocks, red bud trees and dogwoods in bloom, but the view of the river has changed.  Is that what you call a horizon line?  It really rocks on from here on the river! Check out the Class 5 whitewater action on the Upper Yough – 11 miles, Class IV and V whitewater.

If this is your idea of fun, learn more about the Upper Yough rafting trip here.
Bookings available 24/7 thanks to our friend the Internet. Reserve your space in the boat here.

Categories: Upper Yough, Whitewater Rafting | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Meet The Cheat! Opening Weekend Video Action of Cheat River Canyon

Oh it was a MAGICAL first day on the mighty Cheat River Canyon. Opening rafting weekend at Wilderness Voyageurs in Ohiopyle started with a Saturday trip down the Lower Youghiogheny River and finished with a Sunday Meet The Cheat experience and gorgeous weather. A little grey on Saturday but the Lower Yough was fun, a great level, and perfect warmup to the Cheat River Canyon the next day.

Enough talking already! Check out the action here in our first video of the season on the terrific rivers of our Ohiopyle region. Haven’t been on the Cheat yet? Well, maybe this is the year to meet the biggest free-flowing river east of the Mississippi! Cheat River Canyon!

Categories: Cheat River West Virginia, Ohiopyle, Ohiopyle rafting, West virginia rafting, Whitewater Rafting | Leave a comment

Cheat River Rafting season 2 days away

Are you as fired up about this weekend of rafting the Cheat River as we are?

 Pictures of a day of rafting on the Cheat

Do you have some good photos of you having a blast on the Cheat?  Add them to the  post.

Categories: Cheat River West Virginia, West virginia rafting, Whitewater Rafting | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Cheat River season Countdown

Can you say Spring time rafting action!

The Cheat River is the largest undammed watershed east of the Mississippi.  The whitewater action gets going in Albright, West Virginia where the Cheat River narrows and drops into the Cheat Canyon.  At this point the might Cheat River is draining 1000 Square miles of mountainous territory.

Image

A shredder going big at Coliseum Rapid

When a river is draining this amount of land, the levels become quite unpredictable. This is what makes this river such a gem.  You literally never know what you are going to get until you wake up in the morning and check the river gauges.  Fortunately, these days we have internet access to water level gauges for 50 miles upstream of the Cheat Canyon put-in.  This helps for operational planning on the day of a rafting trip, most importantly what size raft are we going to use.  The Cheat can fluctuate 6 to 8 feet in 24 hours,,, yeehaw.  That is why we keep 3 different sizes of rafts at our Albright rafting base to accommodate the water of the day.    So if you are looking for something out of the ordinary and something to shake you out of your winter funk,,,  11 miles of Class 4+ whitewater rafting is what  Cheat River Rafting is sure to provide.

Also check out our 2012 kickoff rafting weekend for Cheat and Youghiogheny rafting specials..

Trying to decide what whitewater trip is appropriate for you, call us at 800-272-4141

Categories: Cheat River West Virginia, West virginia rafting, Whitewater Rafting | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Upper Yough Class 5 rafting fun

Fridays during the summer mean Upper Yough releases.  And that translates into Class five, yes I said class 5 whitewater rafting.  Well some of you may ask what that means… check out these pictures from last week

Heinzerling rapid

It means big fun.  The Upper Yough is a technical river, so that means lots of twisty turny rapids as opposed to large water obstacles.  The Upper Yough has a maximum gradient of 120 feet per mile, lots of rocks to navigate around.  The Upper Gauley has a maximum gradient of about 60 feet per mile, and alot more water volume, so your rapids are more of the water obstacle nature.

Tommy's Hole Rapid on the Upper Yough

Tommy's Hole Rapid on the Upper Yough

Tommy’s Hole is one of the class 5 rapids in the Miracle mile.  This is the “guts” of the Upper Yough, 5 rapids in quick succession with the longest pool less than 50 yards long.

With scheduled dam releases from Deep Creek Lake we are lucky enough to be able to paddle this perfect piece of whitewater 3 times a week all summer long.  SO CAN YOU!  Get in your car and head to Friendsville, Maryland.   This is the closest class 5 rafting to Pittsburgh 1.25 hours, closest rafting to washington DC, 3 hours and also Cleveland.

What are you waiting for?  As my wife often says,  “what will you remember in 5 years?  Another day at the office, or a beautiful rockin day on the river?

see you out there.

Wilderness Voyageurs

Categories: Upper Yough, Whitewater Rafting | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

School Is Almost Out….Time To Go Rafting in Ohiopyle!

School is almost out, and it’s time to celebrate summer break by planning a rafting trip with Wilderness Voyageurs!!   With temperatures in the 90’s this week, going on a trip down the Lower Yough here in Ohiopyle is the best way to cool off.  Come on out and enjoy the fun times waiting to be had.

The Lower Yough offers excitement and adventure for folks starting at age 12 and up, so bring the entire family!  You’ll get  some sun and cool off in the river, while enjoying the natural beauty of the Laurel Highlands, all on your rafting adventure!  So pack up the kids and head to Ohiopyle, PA.  Hope to see you soon!

Categories: Family Fun River Trips, Ohiopyle, Ohiopyle Family Fun, Ohiopyle rafting, Whitewater Rafting | Tags: , | Leave a comment

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