My name is Chris Kay and I am the owner of an Adventure Tour Company called FreeBird Adventures based in Cochrane, Alberta; a small town just outside of Calgary. We run trips and tours throughout Western Canada, with a focus on adventure activities and outdoor pursuits. Our trips can range from 1-13 days in length. We cater to corporate groups looking for team building activities, families looking for a memorable outing, or an extended vacation for foreign travelers looking to experience the beauty that Canada has to offer.
Alpine Rafting in Golden, BC is one of my favourite companies to connect my clients with. I am so confident in the overall rafting experience, from being greeted by the staff when they walk in the front door, to getting off the raft and shaking their guide’s hand at the end of the day. I strongly encourage all of my clients to choose rafting as their activity of choice when we stop in Golden.
When you arrive at the main office to check in, you are immediately impressed with Alpine’s organization. They greet everyone within the first few seconds and move you through that boring process of signing your waiver quickly. Once all the paperwork is done you are sent downstairs to get “suited up”! You are greeted by a few of the guides that will be on the trip with you. They go through a brief introduction to the clothing and equipment you will be wearing, make a few jokes about cold water, and then send you out to your car to get changed. Once everyone is feeling fashionable in their new wetsuit and boots, you get on the bus where you are taken to the exclusive Alpine Rafting put in spot (which is higher up than any other rafting companies) on the Kicking Horse River.
When you arrive at the put in spot, the Alpine staff and guides are already on site getting the rafts setup. You are given a life jacket, helmet, and a quick demonstration of some of the scenarios that may happen while you are on the water. You meet the other members of your team and come up with some fun cheers, who will sit where, and get introduced the guide you will have for your group of 8. My groups have had 10+ different guides, and each one has been completely different. Many of them talk with a funny accent, have really interesting backgrounds and experience navigating wild waters from all over the world, and all of them have an amazing sense of humour. You must be a little bit crazy to want to raft down the Kicking Horse River with strangers every day for a living!
The guides do a terrific job of preparing you for the water you are about to face, the safety concerns, the verbal commands, and the actions required in an emergency. They make all of this fun, informative, and it doesn’t drag on and get boring. All of the guides are in constant communication and have up to date information on how the river is flowing that day. Once the raft is on the water and everyone is loaded in, the guides have you practice some of the strokes and commands. Forward, backward, left forward, right backward, all to one side, etc. There are lots of extra things you can do if you have a really daring group to make your trip even more exciting!
The camaraderie amongst the other people in your boat, and the friendly competition between the other guides and their boats make for an added experience. Races, splashing, team cheers, or extra stunts add an element of friendly competition. It is clear right from the start that the Alpine Rafting guides thoroughly enjoy their jobs. Not only do they navigate a pretty intense river and make it look easy, but they enjoy working with people. They get to know each person in the boat and by the end of the day you might even have a new nickname!
Clients and staff of FreeBird Adventures have only had first class experiences with Alpine Rafting. When we meet our clients at the end of their day, they are smiling, excited, and talking about some of the fun events that happened on the water. We have never had someone say they didn’t like their guide, or found it too boring. We have also never had someone say they felt scared or that it was too challenging. You are never forced to do something you are not comfortable with, but if you thrive on adrenaline, you are given ample opportunity to challenge yourself and your friends! FreeBird Adventures is happy to recommend Alpine Rafting in Golden to anyone interested in a fun, challenging activity that will leave you wanting more. For corporate groups and team building, a day in the raft with 8 of your colleagues or teammates is an excellent way to build relationships, create memories, and see each other in a different environment.