Rafting trips that focus on quality, not volume | PostIndependent.com

Rafting trips that focus on quality, not volume

An experience in Colorado’s great outdoors shouldn’t include a bus ride with hoards of people

By Lauren Glendenning Brought to you by Up The Creek Rafting
Courtesy of Up The Creek Rafting
River rafting in Colorado is one of the quintessential outdoor recreation experiences.
Courtesy of Up The Creek Rafting

Small, affordable, safe and fun

Up The Creek Rafting prides itself on its guide-to-guest ratio (1 to 4!) and its wide range of trip options for all ability levels and budgets. Gear is included for all guests — it’s never an upsell.

To learn more or to book a trip, call 970-947-0030 or visit  upthecreekrafting.com.

When you head out on a river rafting trip, do you want to remember the experience of being on an scenic and adventurous trip in the great outdoors, or do you want to remember feeling like you were at an amusement park?

River rafting in Colorado is one of the quintessential outdoor recreation experiences. You get to work as a team with your guide to paddle through the river, experiencing its energy all while taking in the incredible views of our mountain landscapes and wildlife such as the great blue heron, bald eagles, mink, deer and more. This experience is often diminished by rafting companies that shoot for volume over quality.

At Up The Creek Rafting, there’s no school bus ride with 50 other people that dumps you off at the river’s edge. Up The Creek’s guide-to-guest ratio is 1 to 4.

“We want to be able to focus on the guest instead of running people down the river like a herd of cattle,” said Ryan Moyer, former owner of Up The Creek who now serves as a guide instructor and consultant.

Courtesy of Up The Creek Rafting
At Up The Creek Rafting, the guide-to-guest ratio is 1 to 4.
Courtesy of Up The Creek Rafting

The trips

Up The Creek offers three levels of rafting trips: moderate, adventurous, and intense.

Moderate trips require that customers weigh at least 30 pounds. These trips offer a mix of action and calm moments, making for a great introductory or beginner trip.

“In our moderate trips, the rapids are spaced farther apart with some mellower sections,” Moyer said.

Adventurous trips on the Upper Roaring Fork offer perfectly paced splashing, with continuous rapids throughout the entire length of the trip. Moyer said it’s not necessarily “white-knuckle adrenaline,” but it is a fun enough adventure for beginners to more experienced paddlers.

Adventurous trips are for anyone 50 pounds and over, and intense trips have an age requirement of 18.

“The intense trips are further up on the Roaring Fork River, which gains intensity as you move upstream,” Moyer said.

The only trip for which guests need prior experience is Slaughterhouse Falls in the Aspen area.

Daily Express Trip in under an hour

A river rafting trip is often a time commitment equal to at least half a day. For people trying to fit a lot of activities into their vacation, or for those who aren’t sure they’re interested in paddling the river at all, there might not be a compelling enough reason to make such a time commitment.

That’s why Up The Creek offers Express Trips, which are fairly out of the ordinary for Colorado raft trip options. Every day at noon, Up The Creek tackles a fun 5-mile stretch of river in under an hour. It’s the most affordable rafting trip around, too, at $39.

“You can get the best part of the experience without committing a half day or more to it,” Moyer said.

Guests come first

When Up The Creek takes out guests on river rafting trips, guides don’t want them worrying about things that might take away from their river experience. Guests wearing the wrong gear, for example, can get cold and wet, which makes for a pretty miserable trip.

Up The Creek includes splash gear, helmets, wetsuits, river shoes and personal floatation for guests with all river packages. Moyer doesn’t believe in trying to upsell the guests for items that he says are essential for a fun — and safe — day on the river.

“The upsell might steer people away from it, but it’s important that everyone has the gear because it makes you comfortable and safe,” he said. “That’s important especially for visitors, because they don’t always know what they need on the river.”

Keeping guests comfortable also goes hand in hand with keeping them safe. Moyer said Up The Creek Rafting hasn’t had any serious issues on its river trips since the company started in 1997. He’s really proud of that.

“We want our guests to have absolute safety and comfort,” Moyer said. “Guests come first.”

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