It's been on "the list" for a few years now so it was about time to cross it off. I was in Rotorua, New Zealand's adventure playground of the North, one weekend in October helping a friend with an adventure race. I took an extra day to extend my weekend and ended up booking a last minute rafting excursion. As I got into the van to be transported to the company's headquarters, I learned that I was the only one booked in (a Monday pre high-season)! To my surprise, they were keen to go ahead with the booking. I immediately thought about my safety, wondering if the raft would be heavy enough, especially as we were meant to raft down a 7 metre waterfall.
Once at headquarters, I changed into a wetsuit, got fitted with a helmet and we were off to the drop-off point along the Kaituna River. Once in the water, I was given a safety briefing and an overview of how the next 40 or so minutes would go and off we paddled. The solution to the weight issue I was concerned about: bring two instructors.
Now this is not an entirely typical commercial white-water rafting experience as there normally would be several other tourists in the raft. I was fortunate enough to get a private experience which meant I got to do a few "extra" things. Unfortunately they weren't caught on camera but included going through rapids out of the raft and sitting on the front of the raft going down a waterfall. A fun way to mix it up!
Photos courtesy of Rotorua Rafting
|Here comes the first waterfall
|You definitely get a little bit wet
|I swear I'm enjoying every minute
|Ready to paddle again
|Here comes the biggie
|So far so good
|Wasn't looking good at this stage
|Definitely calls for a celebration
|Attempting the no-hands approach
|Feeling pretty pumped after this one
Look out for my next adventure of the month, on the South Island of New Zealand.