Rivers - Go with the flow!

Go with the flow - Save our Rivers!

Rivers - The blue veins , tears and streets of  Mother Earth

Free our Rivers (John Muir)

Rivers are like trees branching out  into the land.

Ooops, who wants a poetic raft guide?
Rivers are there for fun - fishing, kayaking, rafting, swimming etc.
Surely, they are! But they are also just beautiful passing different landscapes on their way, having different colours, changing there face during the year and sometimes every single day. Exploring something from a river gives you a total different perspective on a landscape, you think you would know.
Travelling on rivers is more than everything else moving without moving yourself - it's fluent like being part of the river.
You can't fight the pure energy of a river - just GO WITH THE FLOW!
But for a flow we need pure, natural and free rivers. A beautiful film, which shows that in a beautiful, sad, human inspiring way is DAMNATION and the BLUE HEART from Patagonia.
Some points mentioned in the films:

"One deep desire/need of human being is to CONTROL nature!"
"We, humans, have to find the patience and faith to let Mother Nature do, what she has always done!"

"Sentiment without action is the ruin of the soul (Edward Alley)

When we feel we ought to do something and yet do nothing, we will slowly die inside.

We know we ought to create and move towards beauty, but we let fear and laziness win in the battle of our will, and so we turn to our tv’s and phones for comfort and distraction, and wonder why we’re depressed.

The good news…
The converse is also true. When we do take action toward that thing we know we ought to do, we bring life to our soul

Raft guide? Going down a river on a big gummi boat. There are more elegant ways. Going down by kayak or SUP, swimming or on a unicorn. But, rafting and working as a raft guide gives you the change to show the rivers to other people and sometimes show them another word. 
Of course, as a raft guide you have often the bachelor party guys who just want to have fun and yes it can be fun going into the big waves, but the trips and things I will remember the most will be the calm morning trip with fog hanging over the river, explaining people what an eddy is and see their suprising face when they underestimate the strength of the stream trying to swim back to the boat.
The nice thing about rafting, it is like a nutshell, people work together as a team and having fun, just playing in the water and another advantage it's fun even when it rains.
There are three golden rafting rules:

1. Never loose paddle/T-grip
2. Smile
3. Always have fun! - It's playtime!

Cons and tips for raft guests:
Rafting at least in Tirol is quite a business. There were Saturdays when our company had more than 7 boats and over 60 people in the water just combined by 2 or 3 other companies with the same amount on only one trip. All doing there Safety Talk at the entrance point. Go an hour on the river, back into the bus and driving back. Business days. Don't do it on a full Saturday and go with small 6er boats.

Apart from Rafting:
Rivers starts normally smaller - as creeks or canyons. Canyoning is the way to explore these form of a river and stone wall gorges by Climbing, Jumping and Sliding. It's fun and often beautiful. The first part of rivers life is like a child - just creative and playful. 

I'm not a kayaker, unfortunately not! It always looked for me like playing even more with the river. While a raft is like a panzer or an LKW, a kayak is like a bycicle going with the flow. I just went down the Imster Schlucht once by kayak. A night kayak trip were I couldn't see anything but feel the flow of the river even more - We don't have to see if we feel!

SUP (Stand up paddling):
I'm a fan of this sport. Not only because the transport is very easy. With one SUP you can even carry it in a bag and going by train or bus, but you can also stand up and surf and challenge yourself. I'm not sure, if I can ever SUP on a lake again. I did two memorable SUP trips. One on the Imster Schlucht, Jan and I were more swimming than standing or even sitting on the board. A great way at the beginning of the season to swim through every single rapid and truly going with the flow. If you have an unplanned adventure at the beginning, you can't shocked later, because you have been throught it. On my second trip we went from Haiming, 45 km, to Innsbruck. We just enjoyed the quit river, even if there are people on the shore, being on the river you're on a total different path apart from the others, an empty road in only one direction. Arriving in Innsbruck during the night was just a special slow feeling of floating into the middle of a city.

There are a lot of other ways of exploring a river but in the end it's always playing and going with the flow.

A sad part: You can see the human trash easily. Damms destroy the full story of a river. Bottles, balls, fridges it all looks super unnatural on a river. Why fridges? While I did my rafting course there was a fridge hanging for quite some time in a tree on our course. The rivers are transporting all this waste into the ocean. Where it is gone, so we don't have to worry about it anymore...
We see it probably a last time on the river. A last very easy chance to just catch it and fish it out, so it not pollutes another world of our earth. The rivers are the veins of Mother Earth. They should be clean and powerful and free flowing like our veins otherwise, we get a heart attack ot so.

The Mata-au (surface current)/Clutha river is the longest river of the South Island of Aotearoa, unfortunately this river is like most of the other rivers today, prisoned by dams, on his 150 miles  way  from the mountains to the sea (ki uta ki tai).

Cheers for reading. It's playtime. Have fun but also please respect the river.

Some thoughts of a raft guide and "river lover".

Inspiring actions for Rivers:

Save our rivers
Artifishal Film
Clean our Rivers


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