“Are we almost there? How much longer? Can we stop? I really need to pee! My arms hurt! It’s really bright out here! Can you do anything about the sun?” Any paddle guide (including myself) has had that one person, or group of people, who wouldn’t quit complaining the entire 4 hour paddle. Now, whether they are younger children or middle age adults, by the end of that paddle, you can guarantee that guide wanted to drown them. If this is your mission, then by all means, go for it, just remember that you will be the funny story they tell for a while.
One of the most annoying things for a paddle guide to hear is everything that is wrong with the trip. The guide can’t control the sun, and you’re not the only one who has sweat running down their back. The guide also knows that you have to use the restroom, you have said it eighteen times in the past twenty minutes. They can’t necessarily stop every time one person has to go. No one likes to wake up at 6 in the morning just to be at the drop in point by 7, not even your guide. Just keep in mind that your guide has been up longer to make sure everything is in place. So, drink your coffee and get ready to have some fun.
When it is 7 in the morning, no guide wants to have to repeat himself. Safety talks are always boring so listen up and you wont have to pay attention for twice as long. When you are paddling down the river, listen to your guide. If he tells you not to paddle to the right of the fork, then don’t. Your guide knows the water better than you do. Understand that they are trying to keep you safe, not damper your fun. If your guide gives you a list of things to bring before your trip, try and get everything on the list. The items are on there for a reason and you will be happy you brought them.
This is Not a Competition
It seems that anytime someone hops into a kayak and attaches the skirt, they suddenly are the greatest kayaker to ever hit the water. Just keep in mind that it is probably just a nice, relaxing trip down the river, so take a chill pill and enjoy the scenery. Also, you will be getting a work out while you paddle with the correct form. Don’t try to paddle backwards, hold your hands in an awkward position, or do something weird just in the hopes of getting a better work out (yes there are those people out there). You will more than likely hurt yourself or someone else when you start to mess around in your boat. Just stay chill.