ACA Swiftwater Rescue - Level IV

Pilar Yacht Club
2884 Highway 68
Pilar, NM
See map: Google Maps
From Santa Fe, take Hwy 84/285 to Espanola. In Espanola, take Hwy 68 toward Taos. Continue through Embudo and Dixon along the river, into Pilar. Note the Rio Grande Visitor's Center on the right, and the Pilar Yacht Club on the left approximately 1/4 mile North of the Visitor's Center.
Start Time: 
Saturday, July 23, 2011 - 9:00am - Sunday, July 24, 2011 - 5:00pm

Swiftwater Rescue (Level 4):  Are you an avid rafter or kayaker, who's learned the basics of river running, and wanting to become more of an asset to those you paddle with?  Have you ever wondered what your role would be if you came upon the scene of a pinned raft, stranded paddler or someone who's life may be threatened?  Do you rely on the experrience of others to decide what to do in an emergency?   You need not be an experienced paddler to help in the event of an emergency, but you should know the roles that need to be filled and have a basic understanding of how to lend a hand without becoming another vicitm.

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In this 3 day course, paddlers of all skill and experience levels will learn to work together as a team to solve complex problems using simple tools and proven concepts in a methodical progression.

This course teaches recognition and avoidance of common river hazards, execution of self-rescue techniques, and rescue techniques for paddlers in distress.  Emphasis is placed both on personal safety and on simple, commonly used skills.  Techniques for dealing with hazards that carry greater risks for both victim and rescuer, such as strainers, rescue vest applications, entrapments, and pins, also are practiced.  Scenarios will provide an opportunity for participants to practice their skills both individually and within a team/group context.

Day 1 will cover how to tie simple, but effective knots, strategies for how knots evolve into systems, and self-rescues.

Day 2 will apply the knots and systems learned in Day 1 to rescues in a horizontal plane (across the river), group management as well as roles and responsibilities for each member of the team.

Day 3 will apply the same knots and systems learned in Day 1 to rescues in a vertical plane (extractions from above the river).

Although new technical skills will be taught, this class focuses on developing judgment and applying skills in rescue scenarios.  Scope and content of the course will vary, based upon participant needs, interests and experience. This is a ACA sanctioned class and participants who complete the training will receive an ACA Card of completion for SWR level III, IV, V based on performance and aptitude.

$250.00 Before Tax
An $80 non-refundable deposit is needed to reserve your spot in class. Classes are booked on a first-paid, first-reserved basis, so send in your deposit today!
I have to say, Kelly covered EVERYTHING!  I've taken this weekend class twice to absorb everything that goes into whitewater kayaking.  Since my class, I've paddled on class III whitewater and felt like I had a great sense of what [maneuvers, compound strokes or techniques] to do, when to do it, how to do it, and why to do it!   What Kelly teaches would be pretty much impossible for a self-taught paddler to figure out alone.  I feel safer, and more confident each time I'm on the river with a foundation of strokes and concepts to practice outside of class, and most importantly, I feel in control on the water.
Bob Pennington  -  home-builder

I want you to know how much I benefitted from your white water and roll classes.  Kelly your presentations Saturday and Sunday were always clear and packed with vital information.  The way you sketch out the hazzards and river features makes them surprisingly easy to remember on the river.  On the river you worked hard with each of us and I thought we class members got far more feedback and individual attention than in other kayak classes I have taken.  Glenn and Michael also seemed genuinely interested in our progress and were always willing to answer my questions and provide good feedback.  All in all the class was both challenging and a lot of fun and I feel it greatly accelerated my development as a white water kayaker.

Reed Mencke  -  Retired


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