If you can’t attend this guide school but are interested in a personalized guide school or attending in 2025
please contact us!
WET River Trips Guide School is unsurpassed.
Our instructors are the most experienced, knowledgeable and personable in the industry. With an average of over 16 years (Minimum 12 years) of full time, worldwide guiding experience and multiple credentials. They are acknowledged as among the best guides in the industry.
We focus on the core skills required to both be a successful commercial river guide and private boater.
Spending 5 intensive days on arguably the best river in the world to learn how to guide the South Fork of the American River (we may also do a day or 2 on more difficult rivers, e.g. Middle Fork American River, North Fork American River, or Slab Creek depending on flows and student progression).
The South Fork of the American is a 21-mile section of river with over 50 class II-III rapids that provide every different style of rapid that you would find any where in the world.
We focus on providing the most on-river and experiential learning time possible. By having the opportunity to see and guide the same rapids repeatedly gives our students the opportunity to actually understand, feel and correct mistakes that may have occurred. This will give you a solid understanding and the confidence necessary to build on and progress.
Our guide school will heighten your likelihood of getting work as a professional guide and your private boating skills
Our Whitewater Guide School will teach you the skills necessary to be a commercial guide (or very skilled private boater).
It’s ideal for students, seasonal employees, 9-5ers who want a fun side gig they can do a weekend here or there, private boaters who want to enhance their skills or those that just want to spend 5 days on the river with incredible people that more often than not become life-long friends bonded by a once in a life time transformable experience.
You do not need any outdoor or river rafting experience to participate in our guide school. You will learn rafting, camping, problem solving and inter-personal skills that you will carry through you life.
Our intensive-experiential Guide School emphasizes learning to read whitewater, raft maneuvering, safety techniques, swift water rescue skills, camp skills, food prep, equipment care, river safety, natural history and the techniques to provide and exceptional, safe and fun river trip.
You will receive personalized instruction in all facets of professional guiding. You will guide and rig boats, give safety talks, train paddlers, flip boats, re-flip boats, scout rapids, rescue swimmers, swim rapids, cook and much more. You will be challenged every day, exhausted every night and more skilled for the rest of your life.
While we focus on getting you on the river as much as possible, your instruction will be augmented with off-river sessions where you will learn details about river anatomy, rescue scenarios, knots, raft repair, rigging and much more.
It is not uncommon for people to excel in some areas and struggle with others. Don’t worry, this school is taught in an inclusive manner. All participants will be encouraged to excel and challenge themselves, no matter where their skill level is or where they are in their learning process. Whitewater guiding is a challenging activity that requires constant practice. Guide school is not the end of learning, it is just the beginning. If you want to be a good whitewater guide you should try to learn something every day you are around the river.
We actually consider our guide schools an investment in our future. While it is definitely open and beneficial to all, and there is no guarantee of employment upon completion, it is our hope to find 1 or more students that have the personality, demeanor and work ethics that we look for in our guides. This is why we actually run our guide school at a loss (a 5 day trip like this would cost $1807.92) and we may even be able to offer finance options to the right applicants.