Swan Mountain Wilderness Guide School has teamed with Great Northern Resort who has a 33 year history of providing whitewater and fishing trips and instruction on the Flathead River in Montana. This is a custom designed program where students can learn from the best by attending River Guide Training on the boundary waters of Glacier National Park.

This custom program includes the following combination of essential river-running skills:

  • Reading and running class II-IV whitewater
  • River rescue (Rescue 3 International WRT curriculum)
  • Principals of hydrology
  • Commanding a paddle crew
  • Maneuvering an oar-rigged boat
  • Rope handling techniques
  • Risk management on the river
  • Assessing equipment needs
  • Rigging a boat
  • Camping & cooking on the river
  • Leave no Trace Skills

The course is a Rescue 3 International course, is a comprehensive course is designed for the boater who would like to guide professionally or gain extensive knowledge about rivers and river safety. Learn how to command a paddle crew, maneuver an oar rig and prepare for the unexpected. In addition, become certified as a Rescue 3 International River Rescuer. After six days you will be a confident boater, ready for commercial or private guiding. This course is comprised of a combination of three courses and includes the following.

River Guide Training Course Outline

Days 1 & 2

  • Introduction to River Skills

Days 3 & 4

  • River Rescuer

Days 5 & 6

  • Advanced River Skills: Learn how to assess equipment needs for extended trips, rig a boat, plan meals, set up a campsite, and prepare meals on the river
  • Preparing for an overnight trip; Packing List, Rigging Boats, Choosing a Route & Campsite Selection
  • Camp
  • Heading Home; ” Preparing meals on the River, ” Break down camp

Equipment Needed

  • Drysuit or Wetsuit
  • USCG approved Type III or V PFD (life jacket)
  • Whitewater Helmet
  • Water booties or Tennis shoes
  • Equipment available for rent at the Glacier River School
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