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Rafting the Shotover River

Rafting the Shotover River

Posted by Kate Fahey: 28th Oct 2014 @ 14:14:13

The team at Queenstown Rafting have been taking adventurers on the mighty Shotover River since 1996 and are the largest white water rafting company in New Zealand. Safety is paramount and the experience rafting guides will have your complete confidence, as they navigate the grade 3- 5 rapids through the twists, turns, canyons and tunnels of this incredible stretch of water.

Your day begins at the rafting base on the banks of the river, where you will surrender to the fact that for the next few hours you will look more like a New Zealand Fur Seal than a person. The wetsuits, however, will keep you toasty warm should you happen to participate in the full rafting experience by testing the cool waters of the Shotover River.

The guides will kit you out with all the equipment you will need and you’ll jump aboard the bus to head to the start of the rafting trip. Cruising up Coronet Peak you’ll get exceptional views over the Wakatipu Basin before turning into the infamous Skippers Canyon road. Now don’t let the road warning signs put you off, these drivers navigate this road twice a day! You may have guessed the road is all part of the adventure experience. Sheer cliff walls and drops on a single lane road take you down the old gold miners trail deep into Skippers Canyon.

Once you arrive at Deep Creek, your starting point for the rafting trip, you will get a full briefing on what exactly you have signed yourself up for. Meeting your friendly rafting guide, you and 7 people are off on the rafting adventure you’ve been waiting for.

At first the river is tame allowing you to perfect your paddling skills and get to know one another before the excitement really begins. With rapids like Squeeze, Oh Sh*t, Toilet, Jaws and Pinball you’re sure to get your scream on! The Mother rapids take you down a narrow shoot just wide enough for a raft, with all the water in the river rushing through the gap in the canyon walls…get ready to paddle hard and hold on tight.

To finish you will paddle into the darkness of the 170 metre long Oxenbridge Tunnel before shooting down the final rapid slide known as Cascade. Smile for the camera! Upon celebrating your achievements you will head back to the rafting base to exchange stories with fellow passengers and enjoy a hot shower and sauna.

Sound good? For more information and to book your rafting adventure check out our Thrill – Water section.

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