Swiftwater & Technical River Rescue Training

Master Swift Water Rescue and Technical River Rescue with the help of our river guide training courses.

If you are looking for swiftwater rescue and technical rescue training in Montana you’ve come to the right place. Whether you want to become a river guide, a knowledgeable river recreation enthusiast, or trained public safety personnel we have the rescue courses for you. Our courses give you, the student, the opportunity to spend the bulk of the course on the river developing a foundation of real rescue training skills through practical emergency scenarios with hands-on training. 

The courses include an ACA L4 participation card and the Swift Water Rescue workbook. Our Advanced course also includes a form documenting the participants performed skills and qualifications (great to have if you’re intending to apply to work with an outfitter).

River Rescue

The River Rescue is designed for private boaters. This is an excellent course if you want an introduction to river rescue. We work on developing the skills needed for river runners!

The River Rescue is a course designed for boaters. We work on developing the skills needed for river runners! This course is the best fit for people that run rivers and have some ability to read water. The primary focus of this course is prevention of river issues by thinking and talking through river emergencies. The course has sections that focus on rafting, fishing, kayaking and paddleboarding. Make sure to let your instructor know your preferred craft so they can tailor the course to your needs.

Course Dates

May 1-2, 2021
June 19-20, 2021

Private Classes Available

Class begins at 9:00am sharp unless notified otherwise. There will be time for breaks, most people prefer to bring a lunch.

Course Length

2 days

Course Price

 $285

Skills Covered

  • Hydrology and Reading Water
  • Medical Considerations
  • Evacuation Considerations
  • Safety Talks
  • Aggressive Swimming Techniques
  • Defensive Swimming Techniques
  • Strainer Swim and Self Rescue
  • Throwbag Training
  • Shallow Water Crossings
  • Foot Entrapments
  • Body Entrapments
  • Contact Rescues
  • Live Bait Rescues
  • Raft Flip Drills
  • Kayak Pins
  • Wrapped Boats
  • Rope Skills
  • Rope Strengths & Construction
  • Anchor Building
  • Knots & Hitches
  • Mechanical Advantage
  • Tension Diagonal

What to Bring

Required Equipment

  • Personal Flotation Device
  • Drysuit or Wetsuit
  • Helmet
  • Sturdy Footwear
  • Neoprene Gloves

Suggested Equipment

  • Locking Carabiner
  • Throwbag (so you can practice with what you will use)
  • River Knife
  • Whistle

Great Northern has rental equipment available. Call to reserve.

Advanced River Rescue

The Advanced River Rescue is a course designed for professional river guides. The scenarios practiced and discussed in this class are pulled directly from common river issues that professional boaters encounter.

The Advanced River Rescue is designed for professional river guides or those interested in guiding. The scenarios practiced and discussed in this class are pulled directly from common river issues that guides encounter. The primary focus of the course is prevention and developing situational awareness that will help to minimize risks and shorten response times. The Advanced River Rescue also has a night time search component.

Course Dates

June 19-21, 2021

Private Classes Available

Class begins at 9:00am sharp unless notified otherwise. There will be time for breaks, most people prefer to bring a lunch.

Course Length

3 days

Course Price

$335

Skills Covered

  • Hydrology and Reading Water
  • Medical Considerations
  • Evacuation Considerations
  • Safety Talks
  • Aggressive Swimming Techniques
  • Defensive Swimming Techniques
  • Strainer Swim and Self Rescue
  • Throwbag Training
  • Shallow Water Crossings
  • Foot Entrapments
  • Body Entrapments
  • Contact Rescues
  • Live Bait Rescues
  • Raft Flip Drills
  • Kayak Pins
  • Wrapped Boats
  • Rope Skills
  • Rope Strengths & Construction
  • Anchor Building
  • Knots & Hitches
  • Mechanical Advantage
  • Tension Diagonal
  • Searches and Communications
  • Real Life Scenarios
  • Night Operations*

What to Bring

Required Equipment

  • Personal Flotation Device
  • Drysuit or Wetsuit
  • Helmet
  • Sturdy Footwear
  • Neoprene Gloves

Suggested Equipment

  • Locking Carabiner
  • Throwbag (so you can practice with what you will use)
  • River Knife
  • Whistle

Great Northern has rental equipment available. Call to reserve.