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A group gaining rafting experience to become a whitewater raft guide in Colorado

How to Become a Raft Guide in Colorado

If you are an adventure enthusiast who loves being on the water and thrives in the great outdoors, becoming a raft guide in Colorado could be the perfect career for you. As a raft guide, you will not only get to enjoy the scenic beauty of Colorado’s rivers, but you will also be responsible for the safety and enjoyment of your clients. Here’s a guide on how to become a raft guide in Colorado.

A group gaining rafting experience to become a whitewater raft guide in Colorado

1. Gain Rafting Experience

The first step to answering your question, “how to become a raft guide” is to gain experience as a rafter. Rafting on your own, with friends, or as part of a guided trip will give you a good understanding of the sport, the equipment, and the techniques used. Aim to gain experience in a variety of settings, including different types of water, such as calm flatwater and fast-moving rapids.

2. Obtain First Aid and CPR Certification

Safety is a top priority at Performance Tours Rafting, and all raft guides are required to have first aid and CPR certification. You can obtain these certifications from a variety of organizations, such as the American Red Cross or the American Heart Association. These certifications are essential to ensuring that you are prepared to handle any medical emergencies that may arise on the river.

Performance Tours Raft Guide Training

3. Enroll in a Raft Guide Training Program

Enrolling in a raft guide training program is a great way to gain the necessary knowledge and skills to become a professional raft guide. Performance Tours Rafting offers raft guide training every year for people who are looking to join our team. The program will cover topics such as river safety, river navigation, and equipment maintenance. We will also provide you with hands-on experience guiding rafts on different types of water. This is a mandatory step in your quest of learning how to become a raft guide.

4. Get Certified by the State of Colorado

All raft guides in Colorado are required to be certified by the state. The Colorado Division of Parks and Wildlife offers a certification program that includes both a written exam and a skills test. The written exam covers topics such as river regulations, river ecology, and river safety. The skills test involves demonstrating the ability to navigate a raft through various types of water and perform rescue techniques. Once you have passed both the written and the skills test, you will be issued a verification card that is valid for two years.

Margo the raft guide

5. Apply for a Raft Guide Position

Once you have gained the necessary experience, certifications, and training, you can apply to be a raft guide with Performance Tours Rafting. If you have not completed raft guide training, you can apply and complete the program with us. After completion, you will be hired for the season!

Becoming a raft guide in Colorado requires a combination of experience, training, and certifications. By following these steps, you will gain crucial experience and know how to become a raft guide in Colorado.