Kumsheen Rafting Resort is Western Canada’s premier and most high-end whitewater rafting company. We pride ourselves in providing our guests with a professional experience that exceeds their expectations.
To achieve our goal, all Kumsheen raft guides must complete our in-house raft guide school training program, considered one of the best in the industry.
For more information on a 5-Day Class 2 Recreational Rafter Course click here.
Kumsheen Raft Adventures is Western Canada’s premier and most high-end whitewater rafting company. We pride ourselves in giving our rafting guests a professional experience which exceeds their expectations, and we treat our guide-school trainees with that same goal.
Back in 1975, Kumsheen offered the first Raft Guide Training Course in Canada when Bernie Fandrich, founder of Kumsheen Raft Adventures Ltd (1973), taught a Raft Guide Course through the Continuing Education Centre at Langara College in Vancouver, B.C.
Recognizing the need for and importance of formal guide training, he began an in-house training program each spring at Kumsheen’s headquarters in Lytton, B.C. The Kumsheen Raft Guide Training School has been in operation ever since.
2013 marks our 38th year of raft guide training and our 40th year of rafting operations.
Kumsheen’s Raft Guide Training School is known and respected the world over.
We’re proud to say that graduates of our 12-Day Raft Guide School are working around the world as commercial rafting guides, including in all parts of Canada, in the USA, New Zealand, Iceland, Australia, Zimbabwe, Italy, Nepal, Indonesia, Japan, and beyond.
Some of our Guide School students take our training course in the hopes of obtaining an exciting outdoor summer job with Kumsheen. Others take the course at the recommendation of other rafting companies, who will hire them pending completion of Kumsheen’s Guide School. A few students have taken our course and then gone on to start rafting companies in countries where there is no commercial raft guiding. Still others come to the Guide School with no interest in becoming commercial guides, but do so for the fun, adventure and learning involved in the course, and go on to enjoy whitewater rafting as a life-long hobby.
At Kumsheen, we pride ourselves in having the top equipment in the rafting industry. We use the same superior equipment for our Guide School as for our commercial rafting trips; in the case of the school, most days are spent on 16-ft AIRE rafts and our AIRE cataraft.
Another thing which sets Kumsheen’s Raft Guide Training School apart from the others is the use of our resort facilities during the course. Resort facilities include a swimming pool and giant hot-tub, beach volleyball courts, 3-on-3 basketball courts, disc-golf course, and the licensed Cutting Board Restaurant and poolside bar. All indoor classes are held in “The Loft,” our onsite classroom/meeting room.
While at Kumsheen, guide trainees stay in our deluxe cabin tents and use the staff facilities. The “Staff House” has free internet service, free laundry facilities, and a fully-equipped kitchen for your culinary explorations.
Being comfortable while off the river enables you to focus on learning.
Our Guide School Instructors pride themselves in their jobs, and are truly professional guides. All of our Instructors work full-time as whitewater rafting guides, are Trip Leaders at Kumsheen, and have a genuine “love of the river.”
Our 2013 Guide School Instructors are Ryan Gray and Braden Fandrich.
Braden Fandrich rafted for the first time at age three, and he has followed the rivers everywhere since then. Braden is a former sponsored whitewater kayaker, and has travelled, filmed, and competed on rivers around the world. His photos and articles have appeared in many whitewater magazines, and he has been featured in numerous kayaking videos and on television as a kayaker and rafter. Braden’s guiding career began with passing his BC Government Raft Guide Exams in 1994 at age fourteen, and then working seasons rafting and safety kayaking at a dozen other rafting companies around the world. Braden is also recognized as a Swiftwater Rescue Instructor, as a Raft Guide Examiner for the BCROA, and was formally a Raft Guide Examiner in accordance with the 2002 BC Provincial River Rafting Regulations (while that legislation was in effect).
Adam Forseth is our former Head Instructor and both developed and led our Raft Guide Training School for many years. He was also a Kumsheen Trip Leader and our River Safety Manager; he is still a consultant for our guide training program and is a Swiftwater Rescue Instructor. He started his rafting career as a graduate of Thompson Rivers University Outdoor Recreation Program, and began working for Kumsheen in 1997. Adam is currently recognized as a BCROA Guide Examiner and formerly as a Provincial Raft Guide Examiner (while that legislation was in effect). He now works full-time as an ambulance paramedic and still manages to work part-time at Kumsheen as a raft guide.
Ryan Gray is our Head Instructor. Ryan grew up in New Zealand and started his whitewater rafting career there in 1995. He first came to British Columbia and Kumsheen in 1999 and for a number of years worked year-round as a whitewater rafting guide, following the summer seasons. Ryan was formerly the River Operations Manager at a major rafting company in New Zealand; he has now immigrated to Canada and works at Kumsheen for 10 months of the year as our River Safety Manager and our top Trip Leader. Ryan has also worked internationally at rafting companies outside of New Zealand and Canada, and is as at home rafting the 20-foot waterfalls of the Kaituna (NZ) as the 20-foot waves of the Fraser (BC).
Andrew Hoar has been a Kumsheen Rafting Guide since 2001 and has worked the BC summers rafting at Kumsheen since then. He is originally from the UK, travels in the winters, is fluent in Spanish and French, has a degree in marketing, and is also a PADI Scuba Instructor. He’s an avid rock climber and loves rope work and mechanical advantage, and he has also worked seasons as a rafting guide in both Costa Rica and Chile. Andrew is the enthusiastic Head Instructor for our motor-raft training course.
Ben Richet began his whitewater rafting career working in the campground and restaurant at Kumsheen in 1996 at age 13. He rafted every opportunity he could and by the time he was old enough to guide commercially, he had literally hundreds of river trips already under his belt. He quickly aced his Provincial exams and began his guiding career at Kumsheen, and he has worked here ever since. With the exception of two part-time seasons to explore other career paths directly related to his degree in Business, Ben has been a full-time River Guide and Trip Leader, and his love of being on the rivers is obvious.
British Columbia has been recognized as a world leader in the whitewater rafting industry since implementation of Provincial Standards in 1989. Upon completion of Kumsheen’s 12-Day Raft Guide Training School and a successful pass of the accompanying exams, the student is issued a Certificate of Competency stating that they have met the BC Provincial Rafting Standards (dated April 2002) for commercial whitewater guides.
After meeting the 2002 Provincial Standards by passing the course and exams, the next stage towards obtaining your BC River Outfitters Association (BCROA) Guide Certification is by doing some familiarization trips with a BCROA Member Company, such as Kumsheen. When these “Fam” trips have been completed and the company feels that you are ready to take clients down the river by yourself, the company issues your BCROA Commercial River Guide License.
A comprehensive Training Outline & Study Package is provided to you after submission of your payment.
Specific topics covered in the program are:
River dynamics and “reading” whitewater
Safe river navigation and boat control
River safety and river rescue
General knowledge of rafts and equipment
Understanding the whitewater industry
This is accomplished primarily through daily on-river practice. Additionally, dry-land training, classroom lectures, and briefing and debriefing sessions occur regularly. Our goal is to graduate skilled, knowledgeable and marketable whitewater guides with the confidence to run rivers safely.
The past 36 years of raft guide training have shown us that the best way to teach guiding skills is to focus solely on the individual students. Rather than students doing tag-along trips with commercial trips, our course is run by itself; freedom from the trip’s time schedule allows us to take the time to customize the material to each individual student and ensure thorough comprehension.
Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for a complete Course Information Package, including various course fee options.
To register for the Kumsheen Raft Guide Training, call our office at 1-800-663-6667 or email email@example.com. A deposit of $500 CDN is required to confirm your booking. The balance of the registration fee is due 30 days prior to the commencement of the Guide School.
Deposits are fully refundable if cancelled in writing up to 30 days prior to the commencement of the Guide School. NO REFUNDS WILL BE ISSUED FOR ANY REASON FOR CANCELLATIONS REQUESTED AFTER THE 30-DAY DEADLINE.