Glacier National Park Youth River Whitewater Skills Camp

YOUTH WHITEWATER RIVER PROGRAMS

Youth River Camps, NW Montana

Is your child eager to answer the call of the river and white water rafting?  Give your kids more than just a full day river rafting trip, give them an understanding how the river moves.  Our youth river camps, in Glacier National Park, are designed for kids of different ages and experience levels.  The goal of the river sense programs is to heighten awareness and understanding of the river environment while promoting river safety.

Objectives of the youth river camp program emphasize developing self-rescue skills, utilizing existing water dynamics, and handling hazards and obstacles avoidance.  Most importantly develop the skills necessary to stay safe while playing on the river with family and friends.

River Safety & River Sense

Great Northern offers excellent full day youth river camps as well as overnight whitewater rafting camps for the youth adventurer.  These water safety camps are designed around youth river sense for kids who want to learn the basics of river safety.  A big part of youth river safety on the river is understanding swiftwater and river hazards.  Our youth river camps will teach your kids the dynamics of moving water and safe river practices that ensure an exciting and safe experience.  Rest assured the kids will have fun, lots of laughs, and enjoy swimming in the crystal blue waters of the Flathead River.

Our courses are arranged as technical swiftwater rescue modules.  Thus, they are similar to the swiftwater courses we teach for river and rescue professionals. In all of our water safety youth river sense classes we emphasis staying safe.  This brings together an understanding of being aware, thoughtful, and team-oriented—and of course, having fun on the river.

Youth River Safety Program Summary

Our curriculum for youth river camps was developed to create a river safety and awareness program on the Flathead River.  The project has been arranged as a technical swiftwater rescue module similar to the swiftwater courses we teach for river and rescue professionals.  Consequently, we hope this project will become a model for other river communities. Please contact us to explore bringing this program to your community.

Great Northern’s youth white water rafting trips and river school camps run July and August on the Middle Fork of the Flathead River.

Great Northern Youth Swiftwater Rescue

WHITEWATER SKILLS CAMP I

This is a one-day camp designed to introduce kids to a moving water environment and identify dangers while stressing safety. The camp takes place on the Middle Fork of the Flathead between West Glacier and Blankenship Bridge on a thrilling raft trip! Under supervision, kids will have the opportunity to practice self-rescue techniques in a fun, controlled environment.

The goal is to develop an awareness in each participant that might save themselves or a friend should an emergency arise.

Ages: 8-12

Course Price: $90

2020 Dates: July 7, 11 and August 4, 8

WHITEWATER SKILLS CAMP LEVEL I

  • Classroom talk about Hydrology and Hazards in the River
  • Offensive and Defensive swimming techniques, emphasis on Self-Rescue
  • Throw bagging – Kids will practice receiving the throw bag and getting towed to shore.
  • Log Strainer Swim – Woody debris is the biggest hazard in western rivers, knowing how to safely avoid them is critical!
  • Shallow Water Crossings – Practice various techniques of crossing streams and accessing someone in trouble.
What to Bring

Optional Equipment if you have it:

  • Water Bottle
  • Drysuit or Wetsuit
  • Helmet (River helmet)
  • Sturdy Footwear
  • Neoprene Gloves
  • Throwbag (so you can practice with what you will use)

Great Northern has rental equipment available but if you have your own you're welcome to bring it. Call to reserve.




Youth River Camps Swiftwater Rescue

WHITEWATER SKILLS CAMP II

This is a one-day camp designed for high school age teens. It is modeled after a swiftwater rescue program with emphasis on self-rescue and planning for safety. In addition to the skills learned in the level 1 camp, students will also work on simple rope rescue systems and working through rescue scenarios.

Students will also have the ability to practice swimming and catching eddies in whitewater.  The camp takes place on the whitewater stretch of the Middle Fork of the Flathead between Moccasin Cr. and West Glacier. This is a great camp for an aspiring river guide or outdoorsman!

Ages: 13-17

Course Price: $90

2020 Dates: July 8, 12 and August 5, 9

WHITEWATER SKILLS CAMP LEVEL II

  • Classroom talk about Hydrology and Hazards in the River
  • Offensive and Defensive swimming techniques, emphasis on Self-Rescue
  • Throw bagging – Kids will practice receiving the throw bag and getting towed to shore.
  • Log Strainer Swim – Woody debris is the biggest hazard in western rivers, knowing how to safely avoid them is critical!
  • Shallow Water Crossings – Practice various techniques of crossing streams and accessing someone in trouble.
  • Rescue Scenarios – Scenarios are based on potential issues in the whitewater environment.
  • Rope Rescue Techniques – Students learn knots and mechanical advantage systems.
  • Advanced River Swimming – Students get to swim bigger rapids to develop better whitewater swimming skills and confidence in the water.
What to Bring

Optional Equipment if you have it:

  • Water Bottle
  • Drysuit or Wetsuit
  • Helmet (River helmet)
  • Sturdy Footwear
  • Neoprene Gloves
  • Throwbag (so you can practice with what you will use)

Great Northern has rental equipment available but if you have your own you're welcome to bring it. Call to reserve.




Youth River School Summer Camps Shore Lunch at our Glacier National Park Resort

OVERNIGHT WHITEWATER CAMP

This overnight introduction to Whitewater River Skills Camp gives students an opportunity to build the fundamentals of boat handling with a night on the river. Starting with dynamics of moving water, students learn how to read the river, pick their line, and maneuver their boat. We use both oar frames and paddle rafts.

 

This is an excellent course for a beginner boater who wants to learn the basics of running whitewater. We cover fundamental river safety and boating skills, including maneuvering both paddle rafts and oar-rigged boats. After two days you will gain experience reading and running class II-III whitewater.

Course Length: 2 Days

Course Price: $305/person for the group class. *Private and custom tailored instruction is available. Call for details.

2020 Course Dates:  July 18-19

INTRO TO RIVER SKILLS (AGES 10-17)

  • Hydrology and Reading Water
  • Safety Talks
  • Throwbag Training
  • Raft Flip Drills
  • Equipment
  • Rowing Techniques for an Oar-Rigged Boat
  • Commanding a Paddle Crew for Paddle Rafts
  • On Water Practice on the Middle Fork of the Flathead River
  • Discussion of River Rescue Techniques
What to Bring

Required Equipment:

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

Great Northern has rental equipment available. Call to reserve.




Youth River Program Gallery

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