california rafting trips & vacations

South Fork American 1/2 Day PM Gorge Run

North Fork American River is a GO this Spring

50% Off Kids on Weekdays

Guide School

Pacific Northwest /

Level: Beginner to Intermediate /

Class 2-5

White Water Rafting Guide School

Spring 2023 Guide School

Now offering California & Oregon Training Sessions!

  • California Guide Training: Saturday May 6 – Friday May 12, 2023

  • Oregon Guide Training: Monday June 19 – Friday June 23, 2023

Our whitewater guide school will teach you the skills to become a commercial river guide.

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Trip Info

This River Guide School is ideal for college students or winter recreation workers interested in summer employment. We also welcome those who would like to learn the skills, but are not seeking employment. Our minimum age to participate is 16, but to be eligible for employment one must be at least 18.

We are looking for people who are safety conscious, team oriented, hard working, responsible, personable, fit, environmentally conscious, and ready for challenges! Rafting instruction is in paddle boats. If you are interested in the skills needed for oar boats or inflatable kayaks, let us know. Completion of our guide school does not guarantee employment.

First-Aid and CPR certification are mandatory for commercial river guides. These are not included with our guide school training, in order to maximize on-river time. We highly recommend obtaining these certifications prior to the guide school.

Whitewater Rafting Guide School Emphasis:

  • River hydrology
  • River navigation
  • Reading whitewater
  • Raft equipment rigging
  • Equipment maintenance and repair
  • Personal rescue equipment & signals
  • Commercial safety put-in talks
  • Camp/kitchen operations
  • Knot tying
  • Leading safe, enjoyable whitewater rafting trips

How to become a River Guide?

  • Love the outdoors & nature
  • Attend Raft Guide School – a multi day training program to gain the skills and knowledge to commercially guide white water rafting trips
  • Have a flexible schedule for full time/seasonal work between Memorial Day weekend & Labor Day weekend
  • Enjoy new adventures & exploring river canyons

Meeting Location

California Training Meeting Location:

Tributary Whitewater Tours
South Fork American River Campground
6500 CA-49 (Historic Highway 49)
Lotus, CA 95651

We will provide transportation from Lotus to any other river locations.

Oregon Training Meeting Location:

Tributary Whitewater Tours
206 Elrod Ave
Maupin, OR 97037

We will provide transportation from Maupin to any other river locations.