EcoFloats - FAQ & Rafter Knowledge Page

Hey, it’s ok! We had questions the first time we went rafting. Here are some of the most common ones we receive from guests. Please read this entire section thoroughly. Still, have questions? Contact us at ecofloats@riverwatch.ab.ca

 

I DIDN’T RECEIVE A CONFIRMATION EMAIL OR DETAILS FOR MY FLOAT
  • Check your junk/spam email folder if you don’t receive your confirmation email within 10 minutes after booking.
  • If you still can’t find it, there may be a typo in the email address you entered.
  • Please email us at ecofloats@riverwatch.ab.ca with the full name your reservation is under and the correct email address you want the confirmation email sent to.
WHEN DO YOU FLOAT?
  • Our summer Ecofloats program runs from Wednesday to Sunday in each city, from mid-June to the end of August.
  • We do not float Monday or Tuesday.
DO I NEED TO BE EXPERIENCED TO GO RAFTING WITH RIVERWATCH?
  • Good news, no experience is required!
  • Within the city limits, the river are classified as Level 1 and are perfect for beginner rafters.
  • Our professional and certified guides will also take you through a safety session with you before embarking on your experience.
WHAT TIME AND WHERE DO WE MEET OUR SHUTTLE? 
  • Each city has specific shuttle meet-up locations and meeting times. These are subject to change.
  • Once you complete your booking, you will receive a confirmation email with details below or changes.
  • Meet your Edmonton shuttle at Dawson Park, 9 am for dayfloats and 4 pm for evening floats.
  • Meet your Calgary shuttle at the Fish Creek Provincial Park Boat Launch 9 am for day floats ad 5 pm for evening floats.
HOW MUCH PHYSICAL ACTIVITY IS INVOLVED?
  • *WARNING – THIS ACTIVITY WILL POSE CHALLENGES FOR THOSE WITH MOBILITY PROBLEMS.* 
  • You river offer a delightful and serene floating experience, falling under the class 1 category within the city limits.
  • Informing your guests to be prepared for some paddling is important. Although the river guide steers the raft, the passengers provide essential power! Rest assured, previous experience is not required, as instructions are provided.
  • Some walking uphill may be involved in getting to and from the rafts. It’s 50 meters from the shuttle drop-off over slightly rocky/pebbly beach terrain. 
  • In addition, getting in and out of the raft requires some flexibility and dexterity. This may pose problems for those with mobility issues.
  • **Kindly note – moderate lifting is involved.** At the start and conclusion of the float, the entire raft group will participate in some light lifting to bring the raft to and from the river’s edge. It’s a team effort that makes the experience even more fulfilling!
WHAT ABOUT CHILDREN ON BOARD?
  • Age/Weight Requirements: To ensure the safety and well-being of children during our rafting activities, we have established a minimum age requirement of 6 years old and a minimum weight requirement of 60 lbs. These criteria are in accordance with the safety standards set by our equipment, including the Personal Flotation Devices (PFDs) provided to each guest.
  • Adult/Child Ratio: To maintain adequate paddle power and ensure a safe experience, we enforce a minimum adult-to-youth ratio of 1 adult for every 2 participants under the age of 13. This ratio is necessary to maintain control and supervision during our rafting activities.
  • We are bound by our licensing and insurance bodies to adhere to these requirements. 
CAN I BRING MY PET?
  • For the comfort of other guests, no pets are permitted on rafts except for service animals.
  • Only dogs with proper harness identification will be recognized as service animals.
  • Service animals must wear a PFD (life jacket) and be on-leash at all times except when performing work or tasks where such tethering would interfere with the dog’s ability to perform.
WHAT DO WE NEED TO BRING?
  • It’s summer in Alberta, and anything can happen! Please dress for the weather and bring warm or cool clothes, a hat, sunscreen and plenty of water.
  • This trip includes time for lunch on the raft or a stop on shore, so please bring a packed lunch.
  • We provide rubber boots for footwear, but if you would be more comfortable, you can bring your closed-toed water shoes that can get wet!.
  • RiverWatch provides all other safety equipment, such as first aid kits, PFDs and rain jackets.
WHO ARE OUR RIVERWATCH GUIDES?
  • All our river guides complete an intense week of training involving rafting, emergency response, health and safety, bus driving, equipment maintenance, water quality monitoring, and local/natural history interpretation.
  • The result is an experienced group of certified and professional river guides ready to provide a safe, engaging and fully immersive rafting experience.
  • Your RiverWatch raft guide will help participants gain new insights and appreciation for our rivers’ history, culture, bio-diversity and stewardship.
  • Everyone will finish the day more connected to nature and the river.
DO YOU FLOAT IN THE RAIN?
  • Yes, we float and SING in the rain!! Don’t worry, RiverWatch provides raingear on each raft.
  • Trips may be modified or shortened in the event of light rain, cold or wind but are usually not cancelled.
  • Forecasts can change or be inaccurate, and in the event of an unlikely cancellation due to lightning or high-water events, you will be notified as soon as possible.
WHAT IS YOUR WEATHER CANCELLATION POLICY?
  • SAFETY TEAM: Our RiverWatch safety team continually monitors weather conditions for air quality (due to smoke), rain, thunderstorms, lightning, potential high winds, rising water levels and high flow rates on both North Saskatchewan and Bow rivers. Rest assured, your safety remains our utmost priority. While we rarely cancel floats just for rain (we love to sing in the rain!), we must consider other factors, including escalating river conditions, that may jeopardize our valued guests and staff’s safety and comfort. 
  • ADVANCE NOTICE – HIGH WATER: Should we decide that it MAY be necessary to cancel the float due to high water levels one the river, we will notify you in advance with a “RiverWatch Update” 24-48 hours before your float that a cancellation “may” occur. If we decide to cancel the float due to high water levels, RiverWatch will notify you 24-48 hours before your designated float time.
  • ADVANCE NOTICE – WEATHER: If we decide to cancel the float due to changing weather, heavy rain, excessive wind and/or lightning, RiverWatch reserves the right to cancel within 24 hrs or less before your designated float time. 
  • RE-BOOKING DUE RIVERWATCH CANCELLATION: If your float is cancelled due to high water levels or weather, our rebooking process will begin within 48 hrs after the cancelled float date. You will receive instructions from our booking team on how to begin the re-booking process asap. Our team will do our VERY BEST to find another date suitable for your group this summer. RiverWatch will rebook at your convenience or issue a credit for cancelled bookings made prior to the cancellation.
WHAT IS THE GUEST CANCELLATION POLICY?
  • We acknowledge that unplanned events may lead to changes or cancellations of your travel plans. Nevertheless, we kindly request your understanding that upon booking your trip, we allocate resources, staff, and make necessary arrangements to ensure a seamless experience. Please note that many of these expenses cannot be recovered quickly.

  • REFUNDS FOR REGULAR BOOKINGS (7 persons or less) are subject to a 72-hour Refund Policy. All refunds requested by guests require a minimum of 72 hours/3 day notice. Bookings are 100% non-refundable within 72 hours of departure. Only a future float credit will be issued if the guest requests a refund within 72 hours of the scheduled foat time.

  • GUEST RESCHEDULE POLICY Our rescheduling policy provides you with the option to reschedule your booking* or receive a gift certificate, provided that the request is made at least 24 hours before your last booking. To initiate the rescheduling process, please email us your last name, booking ID, and the desired date and time for rescheduling (*subject to availability). Please note that a $10 administration fee will apply for all rescheduling requests. Rescheduling within 24 hours of the booking is not permitted.*Exceptions to the Cancellation Policy can only be made by RiverWatch Management on a case-by-case basis.*

  • REFUNDS FOR GROUP BOOKINGS (8 or more persons) are subject to a 7 day Refund Policy. Full refunds for group bookings (8 or more persons) require a minimum of 7 days’ notice. Group Bookings (8 or more persons) are 100% non-refundable within 7 days of departure. We reserve the right to cancel with a full refund or modify any trip at our discretion. Only a future float credit will be issued if the guest requests a refund within 7 days of the scheduled float time.

Questions? Email ecofloats@riverwatch.ab.ca

 

Our Partners: RiverWatch, Alberta’s largest non-profit river rafting organization, promotes adventure, science, education, and stewardship of our province’s waterways. These programs are made possible by our presenting sponsor EPCOR. RiverWatch is pleased to welcome back the City of Calgary as our lead partner in Calgary and MEC / Kenwood Canada as our guide technical gear and safety partners.